A list of the top 5 neoprene gloves or wetsuit gloves to keep your hands safe while doing watersports
You can’t protect yourself fully and complete your look with only a wetsuit on. Sure, wetsuits do a fantastic job of keeping you warm in the water, but you need solid neoprene gloves and neoprene boots too.
If you follow the link above you’ll see thorough information on all things related to wetsuits and for the best neoprene boots on the market, so now it’s time we talk about wetsuit gloves.
All about how to choose the right pair for yourself and exactly why you need neoprene gloves instead of any other gloves.
How to choose the right neoprene gloves for yourself?
Getting the right gear for whatever watersports you may do or want to try isn’t an easy task today. Especially with the plethora of products on the market, some great, some bad, some average.
With the intention to save you time and cut the research hours yet make an informed decision, I have gathered the 5 top neoprene gloves on the market and have reviewed them thoroughly with additional customer reviews to give you an insight about each pair.
With that said, before moving on to the product reviews, I want to talk about the technical things before you spend your money. Namely, you need to determine when and where you’ll be using your neoprene gloves and how often and for what.
By determining each of the following aspects, you can truly find the ones that work for you.
Warm water vs. cold water
Neoprene gloves vary in the thickness of material from 1 mm to 5 mm, and the thicker it is, the more resistance to the cold it provides. However, this comes with a disadvantage.
The thicker the neoprene is, the more it impairs your fingers and blocks your control from using your gloves effectively.
So, if you are paddle boarding, kayaking, or surfing, or doing any other activity in the water where you don’t need your fingers as much for fine work, then it is ok to go with thicker material gloves that will provide more warmth.
However, if you are working with tools, or you need better control of your fingers, then you should get thinner neoprene gloves no matter the weather or water temperature.
Use of fingers
Now, speaking of the use of fingers in more detail, basically, the glove should give you the ability to use and stretch all your fingers comfortably, no matter the thickness.
Let’s say, if you are surfing, you will need a glove that will provide more grip in the palm instead of the fingers and to make it easier for you to fold your hand into a fist. Like this, a glove can add better grip and strength while surfing.
1 mm to 5 mm are the most common thicknesses of neoprene gloves on the market. Anything thinner and your gloves won’t provide you with warmth; anything thicker and they won’t be as flexible and give you freedom of movement via your fingers.
If you are in very cold conditions, then the 5 mm would be optimal, but for better control and grip, I would recommend going with the 3 mm neoprene gloves that provide a solid balance between warmth and flexibility. However, if you are diving, paddling, or surfing in temperatures below 18 degrees C, then the 5 mm are inevitable.
On the other hand, if in water in warmer temperatures but you want to wear gloves for better grip and convenience, then the 1 mm or 2 mm would be good without overheating your palms.
How to pick the right fit in neoprene gloves?
Choosing the right-fitting wetsuit gloves requires to check the measurement guide or each manufacturer separately when buying. Each pair can have different measures even when numbered in the same way, so measuring in inches will be the correct way to do it.
Also, note that wetsuit gloves do stretch when worn several times, and neoprene remembers your palm shape. But even with that in mind, they do not stretch by a lot, so you don’t need to buy one size smaller because of that.
Because having neoprene gloves that are too tight will make your hands go numb, and the feeling of wearing them will be extremely uncomfortable.
On the other hand, having neoprene gloves that fit too loosely will have water flowing in each time and cooling you off, which is again something you want to avoid if you are looking for warmth.
And what about the length?
If you are looking for neoprene gloves to connect to your wetsuit sleeves, then the length of each glove should be long enough to reach at least halfway up your forearm. This way, you can fit it up inside your wetsuit for added warmth and protection against water. Some gloves will even have straps that you can tighten to stop them from slipping down your arm.
On the other hand, if you are wearing gloves for convenience and better grip only, and maybe you aren’t wearing a long-sleeve wetsuit, then usual wrist-high gloves will do a great job.
Different types of wetsuit gloves
There are many manufacturers of neoprene gloves, and they all differ in some way and even though the standard neoprene gloves for paddling are the most commonly used ones and best, there are the webbed fingers gloves and gloves with a different grip surface depending on what you are using them for.
The best on the market are the 100% super stretch neoprene gloves that provide your palms with flexibility and enough warmth and control when in water.
Windsurfing and spearfishing also require highly stretchable neoprene gloves, but for swimming, professionals usually use webbed finger gloves. They are lightweight, water-resistant thanks to the neoprene or the skintight rubber used, and they may have entirely closed fingers or open tips. No matter the design, these gloves allow water to pass through without staying inside.
The most popular brands for neoprene gloves.
O’Neill, originally a Californian surfwear and surfboard brand, started in 1952 by Jack O’Neill. The man perfected the first wetsuit in the 1950s, and since then, O’Neill has been at the forefront of not just developing high-performance wetsuits but surfing as a whole. Being famous for almost 70 years now, the brand has expanded towards a clothing line, but they have also perfected their water suits line for men, women, children, and plus-size models. Combining a classic feel with groundbreaking technologies at its exclusive Area 52 facility, O’Neill is always ahead of the game when it comes to wetsuit feature possibilities. You can learn more about the company here.
TWF International Ltd has a vast array of water gear, wetsuits and beach accessories, supplying since 1969. They have over 50 years of experience in manufacturing and designing wetsuits and up to date have developed a high quality range of summer wetsuits, rash vests, baby wetsuits & accessories as well as variety of footwear and body boards. In 2008 they have joined forces with Sola Sports Ltd, a well-known wetsuit brand that has been going since the 1980s. Find out more about the brand here.
Osprey was born in California in 1974 at the seat of a single sewing machine, with a head full of ideas and a desire to design & build innovative backpacks to the highest quality. Today, Osprey products continue that pioneering spirit, being used on the highest mountains to the remotest islands and everywhere in between. Learn more about the company here.
The top 5 neoprene gloves on the market
When diving or doing any other watersport and you are in constant contact with water, your extremities are the first ones to cool off and feel uncomfortable. In situations when you need speed and agility, your gear can help you maintain focus. So, the O’Neill’s 3mm neoprene gloves will provide you with the perfect combination of flexibility, durability, and insulation for all watersports environments.
- Abrasion-resistant palm and fingers for increased durability
- Sealed glued and blindstitched seams
- Anatomical fit for comfort
- Adjustable velcro wrist strap with D-ring
- Exterior: kevlar palm
- Exterior: fluid foam neoprene
- Interior: fluid foam neoprene
- Pull-on closure
- Textured vinyl for added grip
- Elastic wrist seal with Velcro closure provides ease of entry and exit
Erin, a verified customer, says:
“Great glove overall. I wore these in 50-60 degree water and my hands never got cold. The velcro strap really helps keep the water out. They are thick, which helps you keep your mobility in cold water. I also pulled these over my wetsuit sleeves, which helped too. The fingers aren’t rigid so it’s easy to hold on to a wakeboard handle, etc. I would recommend these to anyone!”
O’Neill’s Glove arsenal will regulate your body’s core temperature but won’t overheat your palms with the super-stretch 1mm neoprene body. They have a suede palm-textured vinyl for optimal grip and anatomical fit for better comfort. The Velcro closure protects against water, and the abrasion-resistant palm and fingers increase their durability.
You can use these male and female neoprene gloves for many other water sports such as sailing, wakeboarding, kayaking, paddle boarding, and kite surfing.
- Abrasion-resistant palm and fingers with textured vinyl
- A good seal is provided from the elastic wrist and Velcro closure
- Suede palm and fluid foam backhand
- Anatomical fit
- Elastic wrist seal with Velcro closure
- Fluid foam backhand
- Suede palm for better grip
Kir, a verified customer, says:
“Size M, Fits well according to description. Quite thin and allow to move fingers for precision job. Pinkie a bit long, but I guess it’s hard to fit all. Topside fabric feels a bit gentle, might get worn too fast.”
Made from 2.5mm neoprene, these wetsuit gloves are the ideal balance between fit and warmth. Made with a blind-stitched construction for increased durability, strength, and reduced flushing of water.
The neoprene gloves have textured palms so that the grip is better, and TWF offers a full, no-quibble guarantee for 12 months from the date of purchase against faulty materials and low quality.
- The perfect balance of 2.5mm neoprene
- Textured palm print for improved grip
- Glued and blind-stitched construction for reduced flushing and strength
Mrs. Anne Youngman, a verified customer, says:
I was introduced to these gloves when I met two women swimming in the sea who spoke highly of them. The gloves are a very reasonable price so I ordered a pair. They arrived in good time . They appear well made ( seams are well stitched).
They fit well and are reasonably easy to get on and off even After swimming. I would have given them five stars for fit if it was possible to tighten the wrist straps a little more. Having said that I never feel they are going to fall off when I am in the sea. (I am just aware they could be held more tightly around my wrist.
I swim in the sea nearly every day and wear the gloves for colder days. Today (15 Nov 2019) the sea temperature was 10 degrees and the outside air temperature around 5 degrees centigrade. I was swimming for 20 minutes and my hands did not feel uncomfortable either during or after the swim.
For anyone new to open water swimming who doesn’t want to spend a fortune on kit I would certainly recommend
UPDATE July 2020
Love my gloves. I have continued my swimming throughout the year since November at temperatures down to 4 degrees . They are still in really good condition. I am wearing them in summer as protection against jelly fish! Highly recommend.
With these 3mm neoprene gloves, your palms are guaranteed not to lose feeling or control and feel cold while doing any watersports in waters around 20 degrees C. They are good for canoeing, diving, paddle boarding, windsurfing, or kayaking and provide an optimal grip whether for your paddles or your camera on board.
- PU super grip ensures greater stability when using hands to maneuver
- SBR foam and nylon inner shell fabric makes the gloves comfortable to wear in and out of the water
- 3 mm thickness will help keep your hands warm and insulated in colder temperatures
J.J Clark, a verified customer, says:
“I bought these gloves, based on a recommendation of a friend who does a lot of kayaking and has owned a pair for years.
My son is studying for a degree in Outdoor Adventure activity and has worn these gloves a lot. He finds them very comfortable,pleasantly warm and hard wearing.He uses them mainly for kayaking and coasteering and is very happy.
Based on my son’s feedback and my friend’s, I would recommend these gloves to anyone who wants a hard-wearing,comfortable and warm,grippy pair of neoprene gloves.
VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED – and the seller sent them quickly and were competitively priced. BOARD MASTERS are the sellers I bought them through,via Amazon.”
The Aotlet neoprene gloves are suitable for men and women and come in various sizes that match all palm’s dimensions. Always follow the manufacturer’s sizing instructions to pick the best pair for your hands.
An added bonus of these wetsuit gloves is that they have the touch screen feature, so you don’t have to take them off to check your phone or adjust your camera. These gloves are quite versatile and can be used for watersports activities, skiing, horse riding, riding a motorbike, cycling, hiking, and everything else.
They use a non-slip, wear-resistant silicone in the palms that provide a firmer grip so nothing can slip your hands no matter what you do. With the super-durable neoprene, these wetsuit gloves have three insulation fabrics, making them waterproof and windproof for all environments.
With the gloves’ elegant and seamless design without visible caps or additional lining on fingers, you can match them with all your fancy sportswear.
Manufacturer’s size chart:
S: 5.91 “- 6.69” (15cm-17cm)
M: 7.08 “- 7.48” (18 cm-19 cm)
L: 7.48 “- 8.07” (19 cm – 20.5 cm)
You have to measure for yourself, but as a little hint of help, the preferred size for women is S/M and made by men is L.
With these neoprene gloves, you also get a 12-month warranty, and should anything happen, and you need a replacement, their friendly and effective customer services will take care of everything immediately.
- 12 Month Warranty
- Touchscreen feature
- Waterproof (not completely, so you can use it in rain or snow day, but not soaked in water)
- Great sizing
- Excellent customer services
Hamill, a verified customer, says:
“I bought a size small for myself which were a bit big for me but perfect for my brothers hands – he’s 19 and a typical size boy for his age. I purchased another pair but an extra small and they fit very well. Really comfy, and having the grip helps massively. For reference, I wear a size small nitrile gloves comfortably (the blue or purple science gloves). Very happy with these!”
Frequently asked questions – buying neoprene gloves
1. Why do I need wetsuit gloves?
Wetsuit gloves are widely available for all types of water sports today on the market. They can be found in a number of shapes and sizes, and apart from the other multiple benefits, there are two main reasons why you’d want to wear neoprene gloves.
- Firstly, they are essential when diving, kayaking, paddle boarding, spearfishing, or doing any other water sport in winter. Cool water will limit your hand movement and may cause damage to the skin if you are staying in the water for a long time. Neoprene gloves help keep your palms and fingers warm.
- The second reason why you need wetsuit gloves is that for many water sports, you need plenty of good grip in your hands. Neoprene gloves enable you this through two channels: First, they warm you up because cold fingers become stiff and chilled and limited in movement.
And then, the second way wetsuit gloves give you a better grip is by using a textured palm design that is sticky (not literally) against flat and smooth surfaces. This means that you will be able to hold your paddle better.
Or when spearfishing, you get a better grip on the spear and protection of your palms against the abrasive rocks and sharp underwater debris. Neoprene gloves are highly recommended when taking part in active sports such as windsurfing or kit surfing. Better grip in those cases can give you a serious advantage.
2. How to Choose The Right Size Neoprene Gloves?
Picking gloves that will fit and serve you well means to pick a pair that fits snug but not overly tight. It is true that neoprene expands over time and memorizes your hand shape, but it won’t expand by a number, which is why you should pick your exact number size and not go one down.
Otherwise, your hands will be pressured too tightly, you will be uncomfortable, and your fingers’ movement will be reduced. On the other hand, when too loose, your neoprene gloves will let in too much water, which in turn will cool you off and collect an excess of water, and trust me, when you are paddling in the cold, this is the last thing that you need.
3. How to Prevent Water from Flowing Into My Wetsuit Gloves?
Just to continue from the first answer, choosing the right fit for your neoprene gloves will prevent too much water from flowing in. For additional protection against water, look for neoprene gloves that have taped seams and a blind-stitched design that keeps the water leakage to an absolute minimum.
4. What Are The Best Wetsuit Gloves?
The most effective and durable wetsuit gloves for all watersports are neoprene gloves. They may have some mixed materials alongside the neoprene, such as specialized rubber or nylon, but the majority will be neoprene because of its heat-controlling and water warming properties.
When buying a pair of neoprene gloves, you will get water-resistant and stretchable gloves that will protect you from cold water, wind, and sun. On top of all that, they provide you with a better grip for your paddle or your tech gear.
In cold weather, pick gloves with more than 3mm thickness that will warm you up in icy waters.
5. How Do I Clean My Neoprene Gloves?
Just like you would wash a wetsuit, it is the same with neoprene gloves. You need to gently hand-wash them without any chemicals or detergents that might damage the neoprene’s elasticity.
Do not forget that cleaning thoroughly with fresh water is the most crucial part of keeping your neoprene gloves clean and prolonging their lifespan.
6. How to Dry My Wetsuit Gloves?
Do not dry them in a dryer, but instead, dry them in the open air away from direct sunlight.
7. How to Take Proper Care for Wetsuit Gloves?
Apart from cleaning with fresh water and drying in the open air away from direct sunlight, there are a few other things you can do to care for your water sports gear even more.
Namely, even though the regular clothing detergents, soaps, or cleaners might damage your neoprene gloves, there are detergents and neoprene cleaners made explicitly for neoprene accessories like wetsuits, gloves, and shoes.
So, if your gloves stink or start to get unpleasant smells, simply wash them with such detergents to remove any bad odors, excess dirt, oils, and chemicals.
Also, as part of your proper care, you should wash wetsuit gloves every time you use them. Especially if you use them in salty water. The salt damages the neoprene and the seams, so if you want your neoprene gloves to last, you have to wash them off after each use.
If you haven’t washed them in a while, then soak them in cold water for about an hour and then hand wash them thoroughly. This will help remove any salt or chlorine from the material that had built up over time.
8. Can I Wash My Wetsuit Gloves In The Washing Machine?
It is not recommended as the best way to wash your neoprene gloves is hand washing, but if you don’t have the time and want to put them in the washing machine, then use the low spin setting and a cool wash temperature. Also, don’t forget to only use a capful of special wetsuit detergent.
9. How to Properly Store My Wetsuit Gloves?
When not in use, storing your neoprene gloves, wetsuit, and neoprene shoes is crucial in maintaining their efficiency and optimal performance for the years to come.
Firstly, you always have to clean your neoprene gloves before storing them away thoroughly. If left with any chlorine, salt, oils, or other chemicals on, then they will degrade the rubber over time.
Your gloves need to be completely dry because if you store them damp, then bacteria and mold will grow out and cause unpleasant smells.
Lastly, your neoprene gloves should be stored in a well-ventilated place, dry, and dark place. As you know, UV light degrades neoprene, so keeping them away from direct sunlight is crucial. And store them flat and make sure they are not bent or creased because creases in neoprene can become permanent.
Neoprene gloves Summary
When starting with any watersport, you may not consider getting any sort of equipment like a wetsuit, neoprene boots, or gloves. However, as you learn and get addicted (and trust me, you will get addicted to surfing or paddle boarding), you will see that summer isn’t the only season when you can paddle.
But being in cold water can be challenging, which is the time to think about gear like neoprene gloves. While the proper wetsuit protects your core from the cold, neoprene gloves will protect your hands and warm them up, which is very important.
In more frigid waters, the winds are stronger and temperatures lower, so your hands and grip will not work as efficiently. And this is when wetsuit gloves become a priority!
Thankfully there are an array of good manufacturers for neoprene gloves on the market today. However, with so much choice, it is hard to make a decision, which is why I have comprised this list of the five best neoprene gloves.
Of course, if you have any questions or you would like to share your experience with neoprene gloves, feel free to comment down below. You never know who you might help with your experience.
And, in the meantime, I’d love to connect with you on my Facebook and Instagram accounts for more cool tips and recommendations on water sports gear and wetsuits.