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Best gym gloves 2022: Get a grip with the best gloves for weightlifting

Rory Mellon
15 Dec 2021
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Seize your potential with the best gloves for weight training and general gym use – these are the ones you need to pack in your gym bag

If you’re an avid fitness fanatic, then you’ll know just how sore your hands can be after a heavy gym session. While some gym-goers wear their blistered palms as a badge of pride, the best gym gloves can help you get more from every workout – and also make sure they’re in tip-top condition for the next session.

When it comes to fitness apparel and accessories there seems to be an almost endless array of options available – and the same goes for gloves. Lightweight fingerless gloves are best suited to general all-round gym use, while thicker leather or padded gloves are often best for weightlifting and provide more wrist support for heavy weights.

To make things a little easier we’ve put together a guide to help you select the pair that best suits your needs as well as a list of our favourite gym gloves.


Best gym gloves: At a glance:


How to buy the best gym gloves for you

Why do I need gym gloves?

One of the biggest reasons to invest in a decent pair of gym gloves is the protection they offer your palms and fingers from calluses and blisters. After all, no one wants to lift weights with sore hands.

The other benefit is an obvious one: grip. When lifting heavy dumbbells or a weighted bar, a solid grip is critical. The last thing you want is slippy, sweaty palms weakening your hold when pushing through the final few reps of a difficult set.

Of course, gym gloves aren’t going to enable you to lift heavier weights on their own, but the improved grip and additional comfort they provide could be the difference between good and bad form – and in the long term that will make a huge difference to the results you see from your workouts.

What are the different types of gym gloves?

The most common type of gym gloves are half-fingered gloves. These look like normal gloves but cut off at the knuckle so the wearer's fingers are exposed. This gives you a better feel of the bar in your hands than full-fingered gloves, and they’re less likely to make your hands hot and sweaty during longer sessions.

You’ll generally find that half-fingered gloves with more heavyweight leather construction and wrist supports are designed with the needs of weight lifting in mind, whereas more lightweight pairs are just designed to soak up sweat and offer a bare minimum of padding and support. Be realistic about which type is best for your workouts.

Full-fingered gloves can be a good choice, too, though, and especially for novices who crave as much added grip as possible. They’re also a sensible choice for outdoor workouts.

If you crave a barely-there glove, then there are a variety of different options: fingerless gloves, palm protection gloves or hand grips can all be a great option. Bear in mind, though, that manufacturers often use the names interchangeably. In most cases, these tend to hook around your fingers and cover the central portion of your palm while leaving the back of your hand exposed. These come in a variety of types, from tough, minimalist ones designed for bar gymnastics, CrossFit enthusiasts or avid weight lifters, right through to ultra light-weight types which are more like stripped-down fingerless gloves designed for more general (and less intense) gym usage.

How important are wrist straps?

If you take lifting seriously, then they’re a crucial addition. Lifting-specific gym gloves feature a long strap that can be wrapped around your wrists in order to provide additional support and comfort when lifting heavy weights. This extra support is just what your wrists need when you’re pushing yourself.

READ NEXT: Best gym shoes

The best gym gloves to buy

1. Adidas Essential Adjustable Gloves: Best cheap gym gloves

Price: From £9 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’re after a no-frills set of gym gloves at a bargain price, then these Adidas gloves will get the job done. At this price point don’t expect anything more than basic protection for your palms, though they do help wick away sweat during a workout.

The lack of wrist straps means these are not a great option for those who frequently lift seriously heavyweights, but they’re a great pick for less intense gym work. The included quick-remove pull tab, located in between the middle and ring finger, makes it easy to get them off at the end of your workouts, too.

Key specsGlove type: Half-fingered; Wrist straps: No; Material: Suede

2. RDX Weight Lifting Gloves: Best tough weight lifting gloves

Price: £21 | Buy now from Argos

Offering just about everything you could want from a pair of gym gloves, the RDX weight lifting gloves are the ideal choice for anyone looking to take their workout up a notch. The leather construction looks good and is tough-wearing. The gloves also feature grippy textured palms and neoprene straps which will give your wrists much-needed support and cushioning during intense lifts. Furthermore, the pull tabs make them a breeze to take off after a sweaty gym visit, which is a nice touch.

Key specs Glove type: Half-fingered; Wrist straps: Yes; Material: Leather/neoprene

Buy now from RDX


3. FREETOO Weight Lifting Gloves: Best open-backed weight-lifting gloves

Price: £15 | Buy now from Amazon

If you don’t fancy stuffing your soon-to-be sweaty hands into a set of gloves before every gym session, then these Freetoo gloves are a perfect choice. They still offer protection from blisters and calluses but leave the back of your hands exposed for breathability.

These offer decent support thanks to the wrist straps, and fully cover your palms so you’ll get that little bit of extra grip when you need it most. Bear in mind, though, that the webbed design does limit flexibility in your fingers, so these aren’t an ideal all-round gym glove.

Key specsGlove type: Fingerless; Wrist Straps: Yes; Material: Silicon/neoprene

4. Bear Grip Open Workout Gloves: Best hand grips

Price: £12 | Buy now from Amazon

If the thought of your hands being enveloped in a pair of gloves throughout your workout sounds a bit too, well, sweaty, then these Bear Grip wraps might be for you. Their open design allows airflow around all areas of your hands and grants a substantial ventilation boost over conventional gloves. What’s more, their padded silicone grips give both a boost in grip and protection against blisters.

With adjustable wrist wraps, sizes ranging from XS to XL, and a unisex design, the Bear Grips are a great option no matter your gender or build. If you often lose things then don’t fret because the Bear Grips also come with a bag to keep them in.

Key specs – Glove type: Fingerless; Wrist Straps: Yes; Material: Cotton

5. BIONIC Full Finger Fitness Gloves: Best full-coverage gym gloves

Price: £25 | Buy now from Amazon

Full-fingered gym gloves won’t be everyone’s cup of isotonic sports drink, but the added grip they provide certainly comes in handy for intense gym or CrossFit sessions.

Bionic’s carefully-placed relief pads provide your hands with some much-needed protection, and the leather palms provide plenty of grip. The touchscreen-friendly pads on the index finger and thumb will come in handy for those mid-reps Instagram posts, too.

They are a little warmer than more minimalist rivals, but they’re not overly toasty – and the extra warmth they provide may be welcome if you prefer to tackle your gym sessions in the great outdoors.

Key specsGlove type: Full-coverage; Wrist straps: No; Material: Lycra/leather

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