The Best Mountain Bike Gloves

Mountain Biking is hard on the hands. A high quality pair of mountain bike gloves protect your hands from injury and keep your grip steady. We've found the front-runners and listed them here with justification.

Biker With the Best Mountain Bike Gloves

Mountain bike gloves are an essential piece of kit for any mountain biker. Second only to your head in terms of importance, your hands need protection. A comfortable glove to keep your hands safe and greatly improve your grip will work wonders to improve your riding technique.

Choosing the right mtb glove isn’t as straightforward as picking out a single pair. Different people prefer different qualities. We’ve tried a good few pairs of mountain bike gloves out before and during writing this article. We settled on Fox Racing Ranger Mountain Bike Gloves as the best mountain bike gloves in the game right now.

We’ll tell you why we fell in love with them shortly.

Best Mountain Bike Gloves

ImageNameStylePadding
Fox Racing Ranger Mountain Bike GlovesFull FingerLittle
ZOOKKI Mountain Bike GlovesFull FingerEnough
GEARONIC New Fashion GlovesFingerlessEnough
Giro DND Gloves Full FingerLittle
INBIKE MTB GlovesFingerlessPlenty

Each of the gloves on this list are perfectly capable of offering you grip and protection for a reasonable price. We’ve included a selection of fingerless and full fingered mountain bike gloves to cater to as best we can to the different preferences. It’s a similar story with the amount of padding too.

The quality of padding was consistent across each of the models we tried. The only difference was the quantity. Some gloves offer little to no padding, which we surprisingly found to be better. We agreed that the added grip and better mobility made us feel safer on our bikes. Below are the best mountain bike gloves for riders looking for comfortable protection and superior grip.

Fox Racing Ranger Mountain Bike Gloves

At first, we were skeptical that gloves with such little padding would feel good out on the track.

We’ve never been more happy to be wrong. These gloves are amazing and we fell in love with them almost immediately. For mountain bike gloves, they have barely any padding.

You’re thinking that’s a bad thing right? We did too, but after trying these gloves it’ll be hard for us to look back to heavily padded mountain bike gloves.

The freedom of movement and grip these gloves give makes you feel more comfortable on the bike and safer than ever.

There’s an aspect of personal preference about it, for sure, but our initial skepticism hopefully shows that we really weren’t expecting to like these gloves.

On top of feeling like the most comfortable mtb gloves we’ve had the pleasure of trying, they also look gorgeous. They’re available in a wide range of different colors, each as lovely to look at as the last.

Silocone grip fingertips give you all the grip you need. A wrist tab closure keeps them secure during even the bumpiest of rides. The micro-suede thumb is absorbent for wiping brows or visors. The list goes on.

We can’t imagine anyone being disappointed after giving these gloves a try.

ZOOKKI Mountain Bike Gloves

Maybe our love for the previous lightweight mountain biking gloves influenced our feelings towards this pair too.

Between trying those and trying these, we did test out some gloves with heavier padding. Putting these back on was a reminder of why we loved the Fox Racing Ranger gloves so much.

These have a bit more padding than those, but the feeling of mobility is still much improved over traditional foam padded mtb gloves.

The material is super comfortable and feels like it will hold up for a long time, despite the low pricetag.

If we have one recommendation to those who want to wager their money on these being the best mountain bike gloves, it’d be to measure your hands carefully first.

For us, they ran pretty true to size, but there are plenty of comments scattered all over the retailer reviews section from people who didn’t feel the same.

GEARONIC New Fashion Gloves

Time to look at a pair of fingerless mtb gloves, at last!

These GEARONIC “new Fashion” shockproof mountain bike gloves offer incredible value for money.

While we’ve never personally been big fans of fingerless mountain bike gloves, these are actually more than alright.

The padding is excellent and covers all the right places. We often find that the positioning of the padding leaves areas that come under a lot of pressure poorly covered, but these gloves managed it perfectly.

A mesh material back allows your skin to breathe, while an elastic microfibre ensures they stay tightly attached to your hands.

These offer insane value for money and are some of the best cheap mountain bike gloves out there. If fingerless biking gloves are your thing, it’s between these and the INBIKE mountain bike gloves, which we’ll get to shortly.

Giro DND Gloves

These super comfortable mtb gloves fit very snugly and feel very lightweight.

There’s no velcro strap to secure them. Instead, they rely on their stretchy material to hug the hands and stay put. It might not suit everyone, but the not having a velcro strap stick to everything we touched was a nice “feature”.

Of all the gloves we tried, these stood out in wet conditions. They disperse water very well on the back of the gloves.

A breathable mesh that doesn’t result in your entire arm soaked was a pleasure to have.

We think these are an excellent pair of full fingered mountain bike gloves. They don’t quite meet the expectations that the previous two pairs we reviewed set though.

They might suit some people well and if you can get them at a bargain, do so.

INBIKE MTB Gloves

This isn’t our first time raving about the INBIKE mtb gloves.

They cropped up as one of our top cycling glove picks due to their incredible value for money.

The padding these gloves provide is plentiful and excellently positioned. For a pair of gloves that we picked up at less than $20, that’s amazing.

Our only slight annoyance is that the velcro pad sticks to everything in sight. It’s a small annoyance but something we didn’t find with any of the other mountain bike gloves on our list.

The grip is fantastic and despite our reluctance to enjoy wearing fingerless gloves (it was winter when we tried them!), they were quite enjoyable.

You’ll never beat these gloves on value for money. At the very least they make an excellent backup pair if your primary pair fall to shreds.

You can guarantee these won’t.

A Guide To Buying Mountain Bike Gloves

Best Mountain Bike Gloves

Mountain biking is an intense activity and you need to be sure to wear the proper gear when riding. Your hands are one of the most important parts of your body that need to be protected. Sweaty hands can slip off the handlebars, leading to crashes.

In the event of a crash, the best mtb gloves will help protect your hands from being scraped up. Wearing your gloves every time you ride can also prevent blisters from forming.

Mountain bike riders need a different type of glove than other cyclists. Due to all of the bouncing around you do on the trail, your hands and handlebars need to be connected well.

Grip is key for mountain bikers. They also need a good amount of padding to protect your hand from all of the knocking around that happens on the trail.

Finally, mountain bikers are more likely to wipe out than almost anyone else, so the ability to withstand impacts is crucial.

Types of Mountain Biking Gloves

There are four types of mountain biking gloves on the market. Two are quite common while two are more unusual. The best type for you depends on the weather conditions you ride in and the trail types you ride on.

Full-Finger

These are the preference of professional and serious mountain bike riders. Extra padding is added to these gloves for downhill racers. Most of these gloves are designed for all-season riding, often being made of leather and waterproof materials.

You can find full finger gloves that are made of lightweight material for summer as well as ones that are heavier for winter riding.

Half-Finger

Popular for summer riding as well as short trails, half-fingered gloves are exactly what they sound like. Most often they are made of leather so that they can protect your hands but are still breathable.

They should have double-stitching in areas that are put under the most stress, namely between the thumb and the forefinger.

Three-Finger

These odd gloves are meant to be worn in the fall and the winter. They do indeed have three fingers: one for the thumb, one for the forefinger and middle finger, and one for the ring and pinky fingers.

It is meant to let your fingers warm each other up. Some mtb riders swear by these, while others find them to be way too unusual to be comfortable.

Pogies

Attaching directly to the handlebars of your bike, these are shaped like traditional mittens. They should cover both the handles and the brakes so that you can still ride your bike safely while your fingers stay cozy and warm.

If you want even more warmth and protection, you can even wear a pair of thin mountain bike gloves underneath the pogies.

Parts of MTB Gloves

Parts Of Mountain Bike Gloves

When shopping for the best mtb gloves, you should know the names of the different parts. Here are some brief summaries of the key parts:

  • Cuffs: The part of your gloves that goes around your wrist. It will either be made of a stretchy material or will have a pull tab to customize your fit.
  • Uppers/Back/Top: Any of those words are referring to the part of the glove that covers the back of your hand. There is a lot of variety in the materials used here depending on the time of year the gloves are designed for.
  • Palm: This part obviously covers the palm of your hand and is where padding is most often found.

What Makes the Best MTB Gloves

As with every purchase you make, there are some qualities you want to examine closely before deciding what you are going to buy.

Material

What your gloves are made out of is very important. You want something that is durable, that will protect your hands from wind and rain, and something that improves your grip. Polyester is a common material for summer gloves because it is quite breathable but does little to protect your hands in colder weather.

Polypropylene, on the other hand, is the preferred material for riders in extreme cold. Acrylic lands somewhere in the middle, being a nice and stretchy material that offers more protection from the cold than polyester.

It is likely that your gloves will be made of more than one material.

The material on the inside of the glove should add to your comfort and be absorbent. For the outside of the glove, durability and grip are the most important factors.

Fit

Finding the right fit is a huge deal when it comes to mtb gloves. If they are too tight they will reduce your circulation. Numb hands during an intense ride would be a very bad thing.

If they are too loose, your hand will move around inside them, which can greatly impact your grip. They should also have a way of closing at the wrists so that there is little chance of them falling off when you are riding.

Durability

Any time you invest in new gear, you want to make sure it is built to last. Not only should the gloves hold up well, any material added to them to increase your grip should be designed to stay around for a long time.

Protection

If you often ride trails with a lot of overgrown trees and bushes, you may want gloves that offer a lot of protection for your knuckles as well as the back of your hands.

You can find knuckle protection as simple as some padding or it can be full armor plating. How much protection your knuckles need will depend on how rough you ride.

Obviously, they should be designed to take as much of the impact as possible if you fall and brace yourself on your hands. Some of the more expensive gloves even offer a wrist-brace to add even more defense in the event of a fall.

Warmth

Like with all bike clothing, the weather should dictate what you wear. In the winter months, look for layers and layers of insulation to keep your fingers from freezing or becoming numb.

In the summer, that insulation will just serve to make you sweaty and uncomfortable. Always dress for the weather.

Water Management

There are two key features when it comes to moisture and your gloves: wicking and waterproofing. Wicking is what allows the moisture your hands create to be drawn away from your skin so that it can evaporate.

Waterproofing is what protects your hands from the rain or from water kicked up from splashing through puddles. Both are important to your comfort level when you ride.

Special Features

You can find gloves that have added bonuses built right in. Many people want gloves that are touchscreen compatible in case they need to use their phone on a ride.

Silicone on the fingertips is a great tool because it helps with gripping the gear shifters and breaks. Towelling is a feature that is designed to allow you to wipe the sweat off your brow.

While that is pretty gross, it is also super useful. If numbness in your hand is a common issue for you, look for mtb gloves that have padding in them. It will stop some of the vibrations and make the ride much more comfortable.

Wrapping Up

Ultimately, no one knows what the best mountain bike gloves are for you better than you. The best purchase you can make will depend greatly on your physical needs as well as the conditions you ride in.

If you do not protect your hands, the prolonged stress that mountain biking puts on them can lead to health issues. These can be things as minor as simple soreness to more serious conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Be sure to invest in the best mtb gloves to keep your hands happy and healthy.