Ski Gloves Guide – All You Need To Know

Last updated 31. March 2020


Skiing is a superb leisure activity to adopt, although you will need numerous pieces of equipment and items of clothing before you can even reach the slopes.

This equipment can be very expensive, so when you do purchase your skiing equipment, you will want to find items which possess longevity and which also provide you with comfort and value for money.

One essential item which you will need before you can ski is a pair of ski gloves, keeping your hands warm amidst the freezing weather conditions while maintaining dexterity and ease of use.

You will need to consider what type of ski gloves suit your preferences, for example, short-cuff or long-cuff, fixed liners or removable liners and what type of insulation.  Our guide will help you through each of these decisions to enable you to buy the best pair of ski gloves for you.

Type of Ski Gloves

Short-Cuff vs. Long-Cuff

Do you want to buy short-cuff ski gloves or long-cuff ski gloves?  A short-cuff ski glove will slide under the sleeve of your jacket, providing a traditional and inconspicuous style which may be more comfortable for the novice Skier.

Conversely, the long-cuff glove is pulled over the sleeve of your jacket, covering your forearm and providing more thermal protection.  However, this style may suit the more experienced Skier who is seeking something extra from their equipment or for when the weather is particularly treacherous.

The short-cuff ski glove may be a lightweight option as well as a more user-friendly choice, providing benefits to both the wearability of the glove along with the practicalities of packing them away in your suitcase.

Additionally, a lighter option may help benefit your flight baggage allowance.  The short-cuff ski glove choice may afford you an increase in wrist mobility when gliding down the snow-crusted hills.

The long-cuff ski glove is a paramount item of skiing equipment which defends you from the treacherous weather conditions.  Fastening with an elasticated grip, the cuff covers the forearm and furthermore allows you to wear with an open cuff to provide practical temperature control.

Long-cuff ski gloves may permit the wearer flexibility and ease of use, being easier to put on and take off.  This option may, however, appeal to the more advanced Skier, with a variety of fashionable styles available to make your mark on the Ski scene.

Fixed Liner vs. Removable Liner

Ski gloves usually come with an extra layer of lining, which may be fixed or removable.  Ski gloves with a fixed liner will always hold their shape, which is a huge benefit, particularly in slippery weather conditions.

A rigid liner will never get lost but may in turn actually improve their ease of use due to heightened dexterity along with providing the user with assistance in putting the gloves on and off their hands.  However, a fixed liner may prove more difficult to dry and of course, cannot be replaced.  Furthermore, a ski glove with a fixed liner may not be as warm as other gloves, offering reduced thermal protection.

Alternatively, you could choose to purchase ski gloves with a removable liner, allowing you to take the liner out of the glove when desired; this may mean that your gloves dry much faster than usual.  When purchasing ski gloves with a removable liner, you are effectively buying two pairs of winter gloves as the liners themselves are able to be worn alone, or you could wear the ski gloves without the liner entirely.

This option provides you with a few different choices of how to wear your ski gloves, allowing you to change your combination depending upon the weather and your specific needs from time to time.  Removable liners may also be replaced at a lower cost than buying the full ski glove again.

While there are many benefits to purchasing ski gloves with a removable liner, such as the additional warmth they may offer, there are some drawbacks which you should also be aware of.  Some removable liners and their respective ski gloves may not fit back together very easily, providing an uncomfortable wearing experience.

To combat this issue, try the gloves and their removable liners on for size, ensuring that they come apart and fit together again with ease and comfort.  A degree of dexterity may be lost with the use of removable liners so trying numerous types of glove on your own hands may be the best option.  A further issue is that ski gloves with a removable liner may be much more expensive so ensure you are buying the best brand and the best fit for your needs.


Another option you have when choosing your ski gloves is the type of insulation which is used.  As well as finding the best insulation to keep you warm, you must also consider the most practical and fast drying type of insulation.  Choices of insulation include wool, cotton, Thinsulate ®, Breathefil (™), Thermolite ® and PrimaLoft ® to name a few.

The poorest choice of ski glove insulation has got to be cotton as once it is wet, it stays wet; it takes a long time to dry and is not very practical for the ski slopes.  On the other hand, wool is able to dry very quickly and stays warm even when it is wet.  Wool can be a heavy material, however.

Synthetic insulation may be a smarter choice, with Thinsulate ® and Breathefil (™) coming top for general everyday use when either snowboarding or skiing.  A much warmer synthetic insulator for extreme weather conditions is PrimaLoft ®, although for extra thermal protection you also lose some dexterity.

When purchasing your ski gloves, you can assess the level of warmth which the gloves may potentially offer you by the weight of the insulation stated on the packaging.  Measured in grams, insulation measuring around 100 grams is an average amount for the standard cold weather temperatures of around 30 degrees Fahrenheit.

Insulation weighing less than 100 grams maybe more suitable for warmer ski days while insulation weighing more than 100 grams may be needed for especially cold days of under 20 degrees Fahrenheit.  The heaviest weight for ski glove insulation is around 200 grams, although this level of insulation is for the most extreme weather conditions imaginable.

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