Did you know that the part of your body that you use the most is also the part that starts to freeze up the fastest?
Many people think that your core or legs are the most vulnerable parts of the body because they’re the biggest, so make sure they’ve got a quality ski jacket and a decent pair of ski pants (rightly so, too) but can overlook ski gloves.
We’ve researched and discovered the best ski gloves.
The Importance of Ski Gloves for Men
Your hands are the part of your body most prone to cold and extreme weather. It’s your extremities that feel the first bite of winter, and could suffer drastic effects with too much exposure.
But that’s not going to stop you from going outside and enjoying some skiing, is it?
There’s so much fun to be had on the slopes. Every snow day, every fresh dump of beautiful powder is just another excuse to head out for some downhill skiing.
But you need a pair of men’s ski gloves to make sure that your hands are not only warm, but safe too.
You probably have a pair of thick gloves that you wear in winter that you might think will be suitable for skiing? Unfortunately not, regular gloves and ski gloves are different. You might even find the best winter gloves you’ve ever had here.
So what is the right pair of ski gloves for you to add to your ski wear? It depends on what is important to you, and what you plan on doing with it out there in the snow.
This guide should help you in your quest to find the best men’s ski gloves you can get.
Why Use Ski Gloves?
Your body does a great job of regulating your core temperature. It maintains a constant temperature around your vital organs to keep you alive. But when you start to expose yourself to cold, your body goes to work to protect yourself. It reacts quickly to save those vital organs and maintain your heat.
That means pulling blood away from the outer, less crucial parts of your body, such as your toes, your nose, your earlobes, and your fingers.
In severe cases, wind chill can freeze these extremities in as little as 10 minutes. You need good protection against the chill with a pair of the warmest ski gloves you can get.
But it’s not just about protection from the wind and cold.
You also use ski gloves to have fun, or to work outside.
That’s when you need to look for other features such as waterproofing, moisture protection, and windproof materials.
Your gloves should do more than act as a barrier from the cold. Your hands get sweaty and so your gloves should be able to wick moisture away.
Cold hands lose some of their dexterity so gloves help you retain that grip you need.
Gloves also keep snow and ice out while keeping your hands warm and dry. It’s worth finding the right pair for you.
Features of the Best Ski Gloves for Men
To buy the right gloves, you should be aware of the features you will come across. Let this be a guide to the best features you can buy for snow gloves.
The shell of the glove is the outer layer exposed to the elements. This layer requires a good protection against both water and wind. Look for shells using materials like leather or a high-quality synthetic like nylon.Normally, this layer doesn’t provide warmth as good snow gloves come with several layers, each performing different tasks.
This fact is surprising:
The most common way for your hands to get wet while outside is not from the snow and ice. It’s actually from the sweat of your hands.
And when you get wet hands, it doesn’t matter how good your gloves are, your hands are already at risk.
That’s why the warmest ski gloves have a membrane layer. It acts as a material that wicks away the moisture from your hand so you don’t get wet. It allows your hand to breathe inside the glove, providing adequate ventilation. Some membranes can even have vents to allow for extra moisture during strenuous activity.
The third layer common to ski gloves for men is the liner. It’s the part that you put your hand into. Normally, it’s made of a breathable soft fabric like wool or fleece. Liners can often be removed, washed, or replaced if required.
If you’re going to be outside all day, experienced skiers use an extra pair of liners to ensure their hands don’t get too cold. They simply swap out the old ones for a fresh new pair, a great convenience in the back country.
In between the layers, you should find some insulation in your glove. The insulation is the added warmth for your hands, so it’s important to care for your glove’s insulation protection.
The most common insulator is goose or duck down. It’s affordable, sustainable, and provides excellent protection against the cold. It also isn’t heavy, so your gloves don’t feel chunky on your hands.
But insulation can get wet, and that’s why you need a good shell to keep the snow and ice out.
You should almost never consider a glove that doesn’t have a cuff band. It’s an adjustable band that tightens around your wrist so that water, wind, and cold can’t get to your hands. Look for Velcro, buckles or adjustable elastic straps on the wrist.
Always find a cuff that tightens up right against your skin. It will keep the glove from falling off, and it will protect you, even in deep snow or driving rain.
You probably didn’t know this:
There are two different types of cuffs that each have their own benefits to you.
- Under the Cuff – These gloves have a shorter cuff length. They are meant to be worn with the jacket sleeve coming over the top of the glove. Normally, you would wear this glove if you needed extreme mobility in your wrists and hands. A shorter cuff doesn’t hinder your movement. You can do just anything you need to with a shorter cuff. You simply tighten the cuff straps on the glove and jacket to prevent water from getting inside.
- Over Cuff – For more serious riders, these ski gloves have a large cuff that pulls over the sleeve of their jacket. It’s usually just a membrane and shell that tightens up over the sleeve. It still allows for a good range of movement. It also provides maximum protection from ice and snow.
For most people, it’s simply a personal preference for what they use. If you’re comfortable with it, use the style you like, and it will still work to protect your hands.
The most common complaint about using ski gloves is that they restrict your hand’s movement and strength.
Good men’s ski gloves use grip pads on the palm and fingers of the glove. These rubber or soft plastic pads allow you to keep your dexterity and grasp the ski pole, the chairlift, the shovel, or that snowball you’re about to throw. Look for gloves that use some form of grip and padding on the inside of the hand.
Beyond those basic features that you expect from any good snow gloves, here are just a few of the bonus features you might in other gloves.
- Zippered Pockets – Unless you have heated ski gloves, these zippered pockets allow you to insert heating pads to help during extremely cold seasons.
- Articulated fingers – Pre-curled fingers on an otherwise stiff glove. This lets you hold curved objects better, like poles or chairlifts
- Squeegee – It’s a little band of rubber often sewn on the thumb to help clear your ski goggles during blustery conditions.
- Nose wipe – The most common time that you’re going to take your gloves off is to wipe your nose. Some gloves come with an ultra-absorbent patch that is soft against your sensitive skin.
- Extra Knuckle Padding – If you’re going to use your gloves in extreme situations (like downhill racing or forest skiing), extra padding on the back of the hand will keep your knuckles safe from sharp hits and bumps.
Buy the Best Men’s Ski Gloves
Here are just a few of the options you can find online. Any of these gloves will be more than adequate for an average day. We’ve listed some powerhouse options as well as more budget-friendly choices.
Let’s start at the top of the range. These are the gloves you’ll be buying and keeping for life.
One look at these gloves, and you’ll know they’re high quality. The tough outer shell (that will need a bit of wearing in) is made from a combination of nylon and leather.
The inner liner is a Gore-Tex insert that you can swap out should you need to replace them
These men’s ski gloves are popular around the world for being the top of the range. They’re completely waterproof and windproof, and they’re practically mini-furnaces for your hands.
Salomon is a name synonymous with snow sports, sponsoring some of the world’s top skiers and snowboarders and worn by skiing enthusiasts all around the world.
These gloves are designed to offer more flexibility with movement and comfort rather than being filled with large amounts of insulation. They’re made from a thinner, stretchier material allowing the gloves to be breathable and offer more movement.
The thermal layers inside will fool you into thinking you’re not wearing gloves at all. But the rest of the glove is working hard to protect your hands against the elements of even the harshest winters.
You’ll wake up happy to the next snow day with these gloves, They come with grippy points on the palms and fingers. They are incredibly dextrous for movement’s sake, and they are waterproofed to last you a whole day outdoors.
If there was one complaint, it’s that you’re not getting the same warmth as the Black Diamonds, but for a good day in the slopes, you can’t go wrong with these.
These ski gloves from MCTi are an ideal option if you’re looking for a pair of gloves that will keep your hands warm but not be too big or bulky.
Containing 40g of 3M Thinsulate and 140g of cotton insulation means that your hands will remain warm when you’re on the slopes but the slim styling allow for a smaller, more comfortable glove. A softshell exterior also means the gloves are water resistant and windproof too.
The Trespass Gohan II is a great budget option if you’re looking for reliable gloves without spending out too much money.
The small price tag doesn’t mean you’ll be compromising on quality with the gloves featuring a padded waterproof outer shell and knitted glove interior. If you’re a beginner looking to give skiing a go for the first time, we’d recommend checking these gloves out.
The folks at Outdoor Research have based their company out of Seattle, so they understand bad weather. Which is why they have such an impressive ski glove at a very reasonable price.
This glove is the extended cuff version for those who prefer this style. The glove is a tough outer layer of nylon with a soft fleece interior liner.
The dexterity of these gloves is unparalleled at this price point. You won’t find another glove more suited to your hands. You can mountain climb and ski on the same day, wearing the same pair of gloves.
Sometimes, you just need a glove that works. You need a glove that you can throw around, use for just about every winter task from changing a tire to skiing down the black diamond runs.
That’s what the Storm Troopers offer you.
They’re cheap enough that you won’t be hesitant to use them, and they’re warm enough to keep your hands dry and comfortable in brisk winds and chilly snowfalls.
You can’t remove the inner liner, which isn’t ideal. The Megaloft insulation microfibres do the necessary job of keeping you warm and dry, an added bonus to a good all-rounder glove.
The St. Anthony ski gloves from Columbia is a stylish option that offers practicality and quality all in one decent looking package.
With touch screen functionality so you can take pictures using your phone from the top of mountain without freezing your hands off, the St. Anthony is a great glove that is well priced within the £35-40 bracket.
The Final Word on the Best Men’s Ski Gloves
Look, the bottom line is this:
Don’t compromise on your hands. You need them. You use them. You probably want to keep them, we’re guessing.
And you’ll use them better if you have them fitted with the right set of ski gloves. Keeping your hands warm and dry will keep you safe from frostbite outdoors, but it also allows you the freedom to actually enjoy the winter.