There are two areas you want your winter motorbike gloves to excel in: they have to be warm and they have to be waterproof. If they let you down in one of these departments, they’re as good as useless.
If your gloves are also comfortable, flexible and offer decent crash protection then you’ve hit the jackpot. With this review of the best waterproof winter gloves, you don’t have to take a lucky dip on your next set of gloves – the jackpot is within reach.
There is a CE-standard for motorcycle gloves, EN 13594:2015. It is broken down into two categories, Level 1 and Level 2.
Motorcycle gloves with Level 1 performance provide a lower level of protection but offer greater flexibility than Level 2, whereas Level 2 gloves provide increased protection but due to their increased amount of protective armour, they may not be as flexible as a Level 1 glove.
When it comes to buying, the usual mantra of buying the best you can applies to gloves as it does any product. Always look for the certification tabs (even if, annoyingly, some still don’t state exactly which they adhere to…).
Some people also like the RiDE magazine reviews. You can find some gloves with a RiDE Recommended rating or a RiDE Best Buy which might be all the validation you require.
If you want a bit of a boost, check out our guide to the best heated motorcycle gloves. If you’re riding long distances (50-miles+) even the best winter gloves will struggle on a seriously cold day.
You can also beef-up your glove’s abilities with handlebar muffs (not cool, we know, but they do work) or heated grips. Or both!
Do your homework before purchasing and try on as many pairs as you can, to get a good understanding of what works for you.
We’ve set strict criteria for this winter gloves buying guide because – with 100s of pairs of motorbike gloves on the market – we can afford to be picky.
There are a lot of winter gloves on our longlist but we boiled this down to 5 great gloves for our shortlist.
It’s impossible to say ‘this is the best motorcycle winter glove’ as different gloves fit different riders in different ways and we all prioritise different features, brands and budgets differently.
However, the best gloves all have build quality, protection and comfort in common.
Your gloves need to be comfortable, you’ll be wearing them for a long time. They need to be warm and waterproof but not so chunky that you feel like you’re wearing boxing gloves.
As you have seen from our strict criteria above, all the gloves in this review have met a very high bar.
What should you pay for a quality set of winter motorbike gloves? There are plenty of great options under £100, so why pay more?
As you’ll see from our review below, the most expensive gloves aren’t just down to brand snobbery – they often pack in more features and use higher-priced materials such as Gore-Tex and goat leather instead of cowhide. It’s up to you to decide what you must have and what’s nice to have and from there you’ll be able to make the easiest decision, which is: what can I afford?
Although the price has been a factor in our considerations, we’ve recommended the gloves that we think are the best available right now – we haven’t just gone for the most expensive.
If our top picks don’t work for you in terms of budgets, brands or features, then refer to our shortlist where you’re sure to find a great option.
Rukka is well-known for their quality kit and these Virium gloves are another great product from the Finnish brand. Textile construction, with a Gore-Tex waterproof and breathable membrane, they feature knuckle, scaphoid and finger protection. They feature a visor wipe, extra-grip palms and they’re also touchscreen capable.
Built with a mix of leather and fabric, the Equinox featured Primaloft insulation and is bonded with patented Outdry to keep them waterproof. It features hard-knuckle armour, a finger bridge, PU coating on the palm and thumb for added grip. There’s a finger-mounted visor wipe and additional reflective strips. A quality waterproof glove without the bulk.
Generally speaking, cheap motorbike gloves that claim they’re fit for winter are often only water resistant, not waterproof and they’re either really bulky or thin but not in the least bit warm.
If you go to a motorbike shop and take a look at a budget set of gloves and a more expensive set, you’ll be able to see and feel the difference.
That said, you can still buy quality winter motorcycle gloves on a budget, you just need to know what you are looking for.
You don’t need to spend £100 on a pair of motorcycle gloves; there are lots of decent sets around the £50 mark. This pair of Probe waterproof gloves from Richa cost just £24.99 on SportsBikeShop and represent great value for money.
They’re made from abrasion-resistant textile with a leather palm. They claim to be waterproof with a Hipora lining and feature a useful drawstring cuff closure system.
The only thing missing is any hard armour, but they get great owner reviews and for the money they look like a great buy.
For a bit more cash but still under £50, you can grab a pair of these Spada Blizzard 2 WP gloves. Again, no hard armour but they feature a claimed 100% waterproof membrane, Thinsulate, a leather reinforced palm and a visor wipe. Really good set of features for those after a cheap pair of waterproof gloves.
While the price of waterproof gloves varies from under £50 to over £250, the best ones all have the same core features in common. These are the features that we think you should be looking out for.
A finger bridge lowers the risk of your little finger bending back and breaking in the event of a spill. Some people find them restrictive - you can always snip this with scissors.
You can buy waterproof sprays which are pretty good at improving the waterproof qualities of your existing gloves.
We found over 650 pairs of winter or waterproof gloves on the market in the UK, it’s easy to see how you can get stuck by the huge amount of options
Our strict criteria quickly eliminated 75% of these gloves. We then picked a maximum of two pairs of gloves from each manufacturer that made the grade, leaving us with 30 options.
From here we picked 7 great gloves to cover all budgets.
So if our two picks above don’t work for you, one of the pairs of gloves from our shortlist will.
Alpinestars Equinox Outdry – Our Runner Up – Built with a mix of leather and fabric, the Equinox featured Primaloft insulation and is bonded with patented Outdry to keep them waterproof. It features hard-knuckle armour, a finger bridge, PU coating on the palm and thumb for added grip. There’s a finger-mounted visor wipe and additional reflective strips. A quality waterproof glove without the bulk. Approx £130.
ARMR Moto WPS340 – At under £40 these made it into the shortlist as a great budget choice. Featuring a cowhide and goatskin construction, Hipora waterproof membrane and a Thinsulate thermal liner plus a TPU knuckle protector. If you’re looking for one pair of gloves for all-year riding, these tick a lot of boxes. Approx £40
Dainese Tempest D-Dry Long – Lightweight and waterproof gloves for bikers who like a bit of style. Built with Dainese’s D-Dry membrane (their equivalent of Gore-Tex), these gloves feature pre-curved fingers, an abrasion resistant Amica suede palm, an integrated visor wipe, knuckle protector and they’re compatible with touchscreen devices. Approx £80.
Held Air ‘n Dry Gloves – These are genuinely clever gloves from Held. They feature a Gore-Tex membrane and, odd as it sounds, you choose which ‘chamber’ to put your hands in when you put the gloves on. Put it in the upper chamber and you’re protected by a Gore-Tex membrane, which is fully waterproof. Put them into the lower chamber and you’ve got a breathable glove, perfect for warmer days. Truly an all-weather glove – it gets rave reviews from journalists and owners alike. Approx £160.
Rev’it Stratos GTX leather gloves – Featuring Gore-Tex and Thinsulate, these low-profile gloves feature a simple and secure closure system, comfortable Seesoft knuckle protection and added foam protection in the palm, fingers and thumb. Quality goatskin outer delivers lightweight without sacrificing protection. Approx £110.
Richa Cold Protect Gore-Tex Gloves – Richa dominate the budget market and these quality Gore-Tex lined waterproof gloves are great value for money. They feature PU knuckle protection and hard armour in the finger joints. There’s added abrasion protection on the little finger and palm and a thermal lining to keep you warm on cold rides. At around £100 they’re one of the cheapest Gore-Tex winter gloves you can buy.
Rukka Virium Gore-Tex – Our Pick – Rukka is well-known for their quality kit and these Virium gloves are another great product from the Finnish brand. Textile construction, with a Gore-Tex waterproof and breathable membrane, they feature knuckle, scaphoid and finger protection. They feature a visor wipe, extra-grip palms and they’re also touchscreen capable. Approx £140.
What are those two finger gloves called?
You could be talking about ‘Lobster Claw’ gloves, which have two ‘fingers’ and a thumb, meaning that your fingers sit side by side rather than individually. Some bikers swear by these gloves as they have a lower surface area allowing your fingers to move around and share their warmth. They are a bit odd to use in the first place but you quickly get used to them. These Held Nordpol gloves are a good example.
How do I stop rain running up my sleeves?
This is a common issue for all-weather bikers. Some motorcycle gloves have a double cuff system which really helps. The inner cuff goes inside your jacket and the outer cuff goes outside your jacket. It keeps the glove in place and provides an extra barrier against water seeping in.
Thanks to the following websites which helped us research and write this review of the best waterproof winter motorcycle gloves:
Motorcycle clothing CE Ratings: