I hope you’ll agree with me when I say:
“Motorcycle gloves are a big investment! Not only in money, but also in the time it takes to find ones that meet your needs.”
Lucky for you, we have you sorted with a review of the best motorcycle riding gloves for your every need! You will be able to decide on a pair of gloves that provides a balance between protection, functionality and aesthetics in no time.
Best Motorcycle Gloves Reviewed
Here are our recommendations for the best motorcycle riding gloves for a guaranteed protection, warmth & dexterity:
1.DAINESE 4 Stroke Evo
So you’re a rider that doesn’t like the gauntlet style and is looking for short gloves with superior protection? Then consider the Dainese 4-Stroke Evo. A pair of high-end backed by the trusted reputation of the Dainese brand, these CE certified, full cowhide and goatskin leather offer unrivalled protection. Super stylish, it comes in two colours – black,red or white.
The bulk of Stroke Evo come from its long list of highly protective features. The most noticeable are the split metal plates on the back of the hand and the knuckle protectors, also made of steel. There are plastic inserts in the finger joints for added protection and elastics where necessary to allow movement. The palm area is reinforced, with strategic placement of plastic sliders along the pinkie area. The entire lateral side of the hand extending halfway into the palm is also protected with plastic sliders, but this falls short of the scaphoid area.
Even with the extensive protective features, users remarked that Stroke Evo still allow feel and feedback while riding. There is perforation all over the palm and thumb to index finger areas and therefore breathability is ensured. These are full leather and once broken in, allow for 5-10% increase in size. The gloves are fairly warm, suitable at least for three seasons of the year.
The manufacturers claimed that it is designed for the most demanding street riders – and it fulfils this promise, offering superior protection with its metal plates and knuckle protectors. For those not wanting to go full gauntlet, these short motorcycle gloves keep you safe and lets you enjoy your ride. A slight let down with the slightly less robust scaphoid protection.
|Short gloves – not gauntlet style|
|Very protective with steel armoury|
|Great all weather gloves|
|CE certified & Breathable|
|Available in many colours|
|Stiff – needs breaking in|
|Less robust scaphoid protection|
2.RS Taichi GP EVO
Being in the business for well over 30 years, Japan-based RS Taichi knows what they’re talking about with these version. These gauntlet gloves are made with cowhide outer construction and kangaroo skin palm, added with protective features are made from plastic and foam, internally lined with heat resistant and strong fibres.
Users rave about the superior protection provided by RS Taichi – particularly the Scaphoid Protection System or simply put – the palm sliders. These are Knox sliders, split to allow movement, but at the same time prevent the palms from catching and binding against the pavement should there be a crash. In addition to this, there is the external protection for the back of the hand, knuckles, wrists and fingers as well as an additional leather layer on the side of the little finger for abrasion resistance. The cuffs are also designed to further protect the bones in the area.
RS Taichi require little to no break in period – it shrunk where it needed and stretched where it is supposed to. The palm is pre-curved cut, following the anatomy of the hand and seams are sewn on the outside in no impact zones, giving the gloves a close fit and better feel. Condensation inside the gloves is minimized with perforation in the gusset area. These are gloves that remain comfortable in summer and winter.
The protection is top notch: palm sliders, knuckle and finger guards, etc. – everything to be expected from a quality race/track-day glove, making this a worthy purchase. Be sure to check your sizing carefully to ensure perfect fit and comfort.
|Little or no break in period|
|Extensive protection – with Knox palm sliders|
|All season gloves|
|Great feedback and feel|
|Seams can fray with time|
|Sizing – check carefully!|
3.Alpinestars GP Plus R
These gear can be considered as entry-level track gloves. It is the first in the of Alpinestars lineage namely, the GP Plus R, GP Pro R II and the GP Tech and the Super Tech. These GP Plus R keeps it conventional, made with a mixture of cowhide and goatskin with no synthetics. The gloves are CE rated gauntlet style, has dual cuff closures, patented racing bridge as opposed to a sports bridge in the 3rd and 4th finger, internal Kevlar lining in vulnerable areas and comes in a wide range of 6 colours.
The cushioned knuckle area has plastic protection, meant to protect and slide during a crash. The finger area also has added raised protection and elasticated bands in the finger area allow dexterity. Most importantly, the patented 3rd and 4th finger bridge guards the pinkie finger from dislocation or breakage in a low side crash.
The lateral side has a whole cowhide leather protection, extending to the palm area, housing the Alpinestars Dynamic Friction Shield (DFS) additionally seated on top of foam. This is intended for slide protection, dampening vibration and absorbing shock from crashes or falls. A pad underneath the thumb area also serves the same purpose.
Alpinestars GP Plus R are highly ventilated with perforation holes on top of the knuckle are and the thumb. The palm is pre-curved with a large area of goatskin for comfort and external seams for a close fit.
As these are track gloves, they are meant to be tight, and break in is about 10%. As these are more Euro fit – refer to the size chart to make sure!
These are good starter motorcycle gloves before spending more, as it is suitable for track day enthusiasts or aggressive sports riders. The protection offered especially with the 3rd and 4th finger bridge gives a sense of security, and another plus point is the breathability and comfort. Take note on sizing and allow the gloves time to be broken in.
|Versatile – for street and track|
|Stylish design & lovely colours|
|Good protection – 3rd and 4th finger bridge|
|Not touch screen compatible|
|Lack of durability – tendency to fray at the finger seams|
|Stiff – needs to be broken in|
|Pinch on the pinkie|
If you ride a motorcycle, you can appreciate the many features of these gloves. And if you prefer a vintage look, this is the pair for you.
There are many features engineered into the KLIMs for safety and comfort. There is knuckle armor in case you skid down the road. Your hands do not get overheated in the KLIMs, as there are many ways this pair is vented. The visor wipe is convenient for making sure you can see at all times, without having to stop and look for a cloth. The striping is an added safety feature for night journeys. The outside stitching adds to long-distance comfort, and the inner padding is ergonomically designed.
Besides, the KLIMs come in several colors. Since the material is goat leather, KLIMs are durable yet flexible. The zipper closure and the pull-on loop make it easy to pull on the KLIMs, but when done up, the pair fits snugly. The accordion stretch on the back of the hand provides some flexibility and room to move. If you need to check your GPS for location, you will appreciate the touch screen capabilities.
Every street rider knows the importance of hand protection when gliding down the road. You will be well protected with the KLIMs. However, this pair is very comfortable as well. Many folks will admire the vintage look of the pair.
|Goat leather for durability|
|Easy entry with zipper closure|
|Accordion stretch on the back of the hand|
|E Touch for the use of phones|
|The fit is small, take care when ordering|
Staying true to the BMW brand, these are meticulously made mid-length cuff gloves specifically designed for adventure riding. Using kangaroo leather and cowhide, not a stitch is out of place in these gloves. It is for all weather, with the 2 in 1 technology – which means you can use them with the Gore Tex liner when it is cold, or go straight to the leather in warmer weather. It comes with hard knuckle protectors and palm sliders and is also smart screen compatible.
BMW Gemuime come in 7 sizes – there should be something for everyone, but as always, best consult the measurements to get it right. It has medium-length cuff and BMW has designed two chambers, one lined with Gore Tex material, making it waterproof and windproof. The second chamber is more for grip and tactile feel and is made of kangaroo leather, perforated in the palm area for breathability.
Protective features include tough kangaroo leather and hard plastic palm sliders on the outer palm to withstand abrasion. The top outer back of the hand is made of cowhide, with hard shell knuckle protectors, further topped with foam padding. Additionally, there is a rubber strip on the side of the left finger – designed to allow you to wipe off moisture from your helmet visor. The cuffs are thick and are fastened with Velcro. Reflective strips are added to the sides of the gloves to increase the rider’s visibility at night.
Meticulously made, not a stitch out of place and of high quality. These are truly all weather and would probably be the only motorcycle gloves you will ever need. The price is a little steep for what they are – but hey! You’re basically getting two gloves in one!
|Little to no break in required|
|Touch screen compatible|
|Protective features available|
|Gore Tex – waterproof, windproof|
|Year round use as it is 2-in-1|
|Excess fabric in the gloves|
|Can be too warm for summer|
|Available only in one colour|
6.Scorpion SG3 MKII
The Scorpion SG3 MKII is a gauntlet gloves, constructed in goatskin leather with Knox palm sliders, knuckle and finger protection and is touchscreen compatible. It is suitable for street and track use, available in three colours. The protective features of Scorpion SG3 ticks all the boxes, crash protection is in all the right places and these features do not hinder dexterity or input from the front end of the motorcycle.
In terms of fit, this product is comfortable and fits perfect true to size, requiring almost no break in. Do consult the sizing chart to be sure of your size. It is ergonomically designed with the perfect pre-curve of the palm and fingers. The leather on the back of the hand allows for good airflow and it is overall comfortable, where the split knuckle protection flexes well, giving good feedback when gripping the bars. In high impact areas, seams are made on the inside and for comfort.
These are three season motorcycle gloves and you can look into extending them into the winter with grip warmers making them perfect for cruising or full on racing. The Scorpion SG3 MKII are priced on the low end of the spectrum but did not compromise on protection and style. Its versatility means that you can use them all year round in comfort either in the street or track. The touch screen compatibility is a great extra feature!
|Won’t break the bank!|
|Knox Palm Sliders|
|Versatile – for street and track|
|Touch screen compatible index finger|
|Little to no break in required|
|Small cuff – might not fit with race jacket|
|Weak finger stitching – tend to fray|
7.Venture Heat 12V
These gauntlet design are geared towards the sport touring rider, sport rider and adventure touring rider who wants comfort coupled with warm, dry hands. Made with lambskin leather, its internal construction comes with 3M Thinsulate Insulation and a waterproof membrane. Heat is felt in just 10 seconds once turned on and it is controlled via the singular touch-button located on the back of the hand. The carbon fibre knuckle guard offers protection and the touch screen capability is an added bonus.
On the more positive side, Venture Heat are ready to go – it comes with all the accessories and you just need to plug it into the existing battery of your motorcycle, and a red light will appear on the control button on the back hand of the glove to signify that it is working. This also allows the flexibility for the gloves to be used with the ATV, snowmobile and scooter.
Its interior is soft and comfortable, and once turned on, heats up faster than a battery would. It comes with a built in temperature control in three levels of heating. For use in 1 – 5 degrees Celsius for example, even when set at medium heat, Venture Heat offers pleasant warmth. It is also flexible enough for use in warmer conditions, without the heating function on.Venture heat in one of the best heated gloves available on markets.
The heating elements are focused along the thumb and fingertips. The palm area is left thin and free for better grip and feedback from the bars. The gloves can also be paired with the 12V Heated Jacket Liner from the same maker. Ready to use with hassle free setup and fast heating. While it does work as intended, it is not waterproof and offers slightly less protection than unheated gloves would. The touch screen capability is an added bonus, and these gear can be used on its own if unheated.
|Touch screen finger function for smartphones|
|Heat control on each glove|
|Flexible – can be used without the heating feature|
|Accessories are included with the gloves – ready to go|
|Only one colour|
These are simply good spring/summer riding gloves made from soft, strong leather. No carbon, plastic or anything eye-catching other than Velcro straps on the wrist for secure fit and padding on selected areas. These are very durable, lasting over 5-8 years in normal conditions. The leather for these brand is dyed into two colours – black and tan.
That being said, comfort is definitely at its maximum with Tour Master. Deerskin is much tougher and provides better abrasion resistance than cowhide, while at the same time remaining soft with tons of flex even when wet. The gloves mould to the shape of your hand over time like no other.
The outside seam makes for a closer fit and strategically placed pads on the palm and thumb area as well as its pre-curved shape reduces grip fatigue. They work well enough for touch-screen devices, and can be easily taken on and off. Ventilation is ensured with perforation on the fingers, and in spring/summer, these ensure pleasant touring. With heated liners and heated grips these can be taken for winter rides as well.
Tour Master fit true to the size chart, not much of a gauntlet and fits well under jacket cuffs. These are extremely comfortable, simple and basic designed deerskin gloves for spring/summer rides. Lacks knuckle and palm protection, but it is sufficient against road debris. Plus points are given for its longevity and durability – expect it to last for years to come. Use with touch screen possible.
|Long lasting and durable|
|Possible use with touch screen|
|Well ventilated & very good fit|
|Little or no break in required|
|Stains on first few use, bleeds when wet/sweat|
|Lack protection – knuckles, palm|
The Shima Caliber are straight forward leather gloves made from goatskin. It is aimed at those looking for comfort and style, with basic protective features. It is carefully designed in the vintage style with decorative stitching and comes in black and black/brown.
Overall, these product do not skimp on comfort. The overall goatskin is soft and the gloves are designed with a pre-curved palm and finger profile to ensure a good grip. Breathability is maximised with perforation holes located along the fingers and back of the hand. The gloves come up to just slightly above the wrists, and this area is strengthened with additional leather panels and elastic inserts to keep the gloves in place during rides.
Shima Caliber are CE rated. For impact and abrasion protection, foam absorbers and hard knuckle protectors are included in the gloves’ design. This is much more protection than is provided for similar motorcycle gloves in this category.
Shima Caliber are true to fit and the leather is of high quality, requiring little to no break in. The palm area is slightly thicker but does not affect dexterity of the hands and there is still good feedback from the front end of the bike. These are more spring/summer riding gloves and additional layers would be needed to take it into winter. The stylish vintage gloves are well made and comfortable. While the colour might not be what it seems, it is still a good buy, especially with protective features such as the knuckle and palm protectors.
|Little or no break period required|
|Basic protection – palm and knuckle reinforcements|
|Does not work on touch screen|
These are old school designed full leather gloves that are comfortable and won’t break the bank. Entirely made of sleek black dyed cowhide, these gloves give the rider full feel and feedback from the front end of the bike.
Joe Rocket fit true to size and the sizing is spot on, with additional sizes for those with wider palms. Do consult the manufacturers measurements to be exact. Ergonomically designed with pre-curved fingers, a thin layer of gels is placed in the palm area. This feature cushions the hands and makes these hand protectors extremely comfortable for long distance rides. As it is not bulky with armour, hand dexterity is at its maximum and the full sensation from the throttle is not compromised, making rides all the more thrilling.
This brand are simple to put on and take off, without the hassle of straps on the wrist area. It just has comfortable elastic bands to keep the gloves in place. There is just a reflective logo on the top of the back of the hand area to assist with rider visibility in the dark and otherwise these are solid black.
For the price, these are good quality full leather gloves that are designed for utmost comfort. It lacks protection, but allows full riding sensation, not to mention being designed to suit those looking for old style, classic gear.
|Stiff – requires break in|
|Easy on and off|
|Basic, simple design|
|No protection – basic leather gloves|
|Only comes in black|
Motorcycle Gloves Buyer’s Guide
When riding a motorcycle, getting the right pair of gloves is of utmost importance. It is the second most protective gear after the helmet – you are programmed to put your hands down in a crash and therefore it is highly likely that the gloves will serve as the first line of protection.
Choosing a good pair of hand protectors depends on several factors – protection, function and your own style. Consider the type of bike you ride, what time of year you are going to be riding and then make sure that the pair you choose fit – and that they fit really well. Here is a guide to choosing the perfect motorcycle gloves for you:
Every moto glove you encounter, there will be a size chart and a guide for measurement. Pay attention to these as there is a difference based on where the gloves are designed. For example, European cut gloves are smaller sized compared to American ones.
In short, there are no shortcuts. Measure your hands! To measure, lay your palm onto a tape measure and get the measurement of the widest area of your palm (typically below the knuckles). Similarly, if a circumference is needed, also measure around the widest area of your palm, and do it for both hands – your left and right hand usually differ in size – get the average. Refer back to the chart and choose your size accordingly. If your gloves are too tight, you will have a hard time manoeuvring your controls. Bear in mind that textile gloves do not break in and allow 5% break in for leather gloves. For ladies – remember that the palm is thinner than men’s and therefore measuring the circumference would be best.
2.Type of Bike You Ride
The ergonomics of the motorcycle glove depends a lot on the type of bike. If you are a sports rider, choosing a snug, pre-curved pair of gloves would feel more natural and provide good support. Sports riders also need gloves that allow a lot of movement and feel as well as feedback from the front end of the bike.
Cruisers or touring gloves would be more relaxed, and are usually the best all round gloves. Protection should nevertheless be highly considered, either as safeguard in the unfortunate event of a crash or from other elements during a journey – road debris and the likes.
3.When you will be riding
If you are riding mostly in cold weather – definitely consider winter gloves. These come with different features – it could be heated plug-in gloves, or battery powered heated gloves . Material for winter motorcycle gloves may include Gore Tex that is waterproof and windproof or added material for lining and insulation. Also consider longer cuffs in winter gloves for added protection against the elements.
Look for perforation in summer motorcycle gloves to ensure breathability and airflow. You should never go with fingerless gloves, as these do not provide any protection for your hands.
In terms of what the motorcycle gloves are made of, lets start with the different leathers used. You will encounter cowhide, kangaroo, goatskin and also sometimes, deerskin.
Cowhide is stiff and heavy but is able to take abrasion well. Kangaroo is somewhat similar but lighter compared to cowhide. Goatskin is soft and supple. Deerskin also takes abrasion well, and is soft and comfortable. The harder leather – cowhide namely, is mostly used as a hard shell i.e. the outside or form of the gloves. The softer leather is usually used to form part of the palm.
Also on materials, various plastic composites and even metal can be used. The positioning of these components determines the level of protection provided by the gloves. For maximum protection – look for protection in the palm and scaphoid area i.e. the area beneath the thumbs, in the form of hard plastic sliders positioned in a way such that thedon’t get in the way when riding, but to slide when you put your arms in front of you in the case of a crash. Also to look out for is good protection on the lateral side of your hands, extending all the way along the pinkie area. Additionally, a bridge or a link between the 3rd and 4th finger would also protect against abrasion and breakage.
Again, you have to weigh in these protective features against the comfort you want in your ride as these can be bulky and reduce feel and feedback from your bike.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why do bikers wear gloves?
Every safe bike outfit recommends a set of quality protective gear. Regardless of being a seasoned bike rider or a beginner, a complete set of safety gear IS essential. Among the top 3 essentials for riding a motorcycle that anybody is likely to mention are, a helmet, jacket and a pair of gloves.
Out of the 3 mentioned above, motorbike gloves are the most ignored of all. Here are some good reasons why you should think of investing in a pair of good motorcycle gloves for yourself.
- Grip: bike Gloves offer a good grip that always counts for a delightful riding experience as they help the fingers curve around the clutch and prevent them from slipping across the asphalt surface of the handle. Spending on a pair of waterproof bike gloves goes a long way in ensuring safety in case of wet or sweaty hands.
- Comfort & protection: motorcycle gloves tend to absorb the vibrations, thereby preventing any numbness or tingling sensations, that riders often feel on longer routes. Further, hand gloves safeguard your skin from wind, and dry weather. A pair of long gloves also provide good support to wrists and prevent multiple wrist fractures in case of injury. Also feel free to look at some bike gloves with closure systems that keep the gloves on in case of a crash landing.
- Style: getting the best pair of hand gloves is not only essential for safety but also style. Long leather styled bike gloves can easily set a pair of hearts to flutter!
Why do motorcycle gloves have hard knuckles?
Motorcycle gloves with hard knuckles or Weighted knuckle gloves, as originally known, were meant to be used as a weapon in combat. Made of leather, or any other synthetic material, the early weighted knuckle gloves were stitched with small lead or steel pouches to cover the knuckles. In some designs, the entire hand glove was stitched with lead pouches to provide more resistance and damage to the opponent.
As awareness for comfort and safety increased, bike riders started using weighted hand gloves for a complete riding experience. Motorcycle riders have a full range of hard knuckle bike glove options available such as leather, compact foam, metal, fibres, rubber etc. to choose from.
For regular commuting, hard knuckle bike gloves provide you with protection from occasional road accidents, low side slides in particular and offer a high level of security in case of aggressive riders or bike sport. The hard knuckle fitted hand gloves offer a sustained and stronger grip as compared to normal hand gloves which makes bike maneuvering relatively easier on harsh terrains.
Usually, made from light weight – high quality material, weighted knuckle gloves can be a little expensive as compared to the regular bike gloves, however the neat stitching and round fitted knuckles with anti slip designs and self dry material properties make it worth adding it to your bike gear!
How to clean smelly motorcycle gloves?
With increased awareness among bike riders to spend on and use high quality bike gear including motorcycle gloves, it becomes even more important to ensure the longevity and maintenance of the expensive gears.
With regular usage and weather impact, bike gloves can eventually wear out, get stiff and stink unless they are taken care of at regular intervals. With some steps to follow, you can ensure a good life for your gloves. Here are some tips:
- Never dump your gloves in a jacket pocket, or a helmet after riding! Let them out and dry.
- Rinse the gloves in warm water (avoid high pressure) and soak them for a 2-3 minutes before adding a mild detergent or any kitchen soap. Wash them thoroughly inside out with a soft brush or a small towel.
- Rinse again with clean water and place a small towel or tissue paper to absorb any remaining water.
- Allow the gloves to completely dry out, avoid the sun or any form of heat .Check the best gloves dryers here.
- Lastly, apply a good leather moisturizer, to allow the material to breathe and move freely. Wipe off excess conditioner and let them dry out before you use them again. Avoid using the conditioner frequently (use only once or twice in 3 months). Make sure to condition the gloves during season change, or if you use them frequently.
A good pair of motorcycle gloves should be well fit to enhance your grip and allow you a lot of control. They should not hamper your enjoyment of the ride while at the same time guard you in any unforeseen circumstances. They should be your best friends. By no means is this guide exhaustive, but they should assist you in choosing your perfect pair of gloves.
Now It’s Your Turn
Your opinion matters, and we welcome discussions! Do leave your thoughts in the comment section below.