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If you’ve been fishing without gloves you probably already know the dangers of doing so firsthand. There are countless ways to get injured — a flailing fish sends a treble hook deep into your palm; careless handling of a catfish results in being stabbed by a venomous spine; or a filleting knife slips and cuts your finger to the bone. Fishing gloves safeguard you against such mishaps. Some are also meant for weather protection, whether you’re at risk of frostbite on an icy Michigan lake or liable to get sunburnt on the Bahamian sand flats. There are many different types of fishing gloves. The right one for you depends on where and how you fish and which specific activity you need them for. Read on for all of our specialized picks.
Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Lindy Fish Handling Glove
Most fishing gloves have a specific purpose, but the Lindy Fish Handling Glove is a reliable choice no matter your fishing conditions. You can use it to remove fish from live wells, to land and unhook toothy monsters, to handle braid and wire lines, and even to fillet your catch at the end of the day. It’s also meant for use in fresh and salt water. The key to this glove’s versatility is its SuperFabric material; made with armor technology, the manufacturer claims that the fabric is 800% more puncture resistant than similar gloves and will deflect even the sharpest hooks.
The Lindy Glove also provides a solid grip on slippery fish and is chemical-resistant. This means that gas and oil slide straight off and fish odor takes longer to permeate; when the glove finally starts to smell, simply throw it in the washing machine. There are two colors to choose from — orange or yellow, and three sizes — S/M, L/XL, and XXL. Use the adjustable Velcro wrist strap to ensure a snug fit. These gloves are sold separately in left and right-hand orientations.
Best Budget: Berkley Fishing Gloves
Looking for a pair of protective fishing gloves but don’t want to spend upwards of $30? Berkley Fishing Gloves cost less than $4 and receive great feedback from reviewers who appreciate their simple yet effective design. They are made from coated fabric with a textured, waterproof grip on the palm and fingers. This grip is long-lasting and makes it easy to hold on to slippery fish whether you’re selecting bait from the live well or returning fish to the water during a catch and release tournament.
The gloves also afford good protection from hooks, spines, and abrasive lines, and when they get dirty, they're easily washable. Inevitably with a product that’s so much cheaper than its competitors, there are some downsides: the gloves’ coating can affect its flexibility and the one-size-fits-all design can be problematic if your hands are particularly small or large.
Best for Fly Fishing: Glacier Glove Alaska River Series Fingerless Gloves
It takes a special pair of gloves to meet all the requirements of the cold weather fly fisherman. You need something that can protect your hands from freezing temperatures while also maintaining the dexterity needed to tie flies and strip line. That’s where the Glacier Glove Alaska River Series Fingerless Gloves come in. The gloves have a windproof fleece back and a neoprene palm with a G-Tek 2mm fleece lining. The neoprene gives you a good grip for removing fish hooks and releasing your catch back into the river.
Although the gloves aren’t waterproof, the neoprene construction means that trapped water is soon warmed by your body heat. The fingerless design allows you to perform fine motor tasks with as much freedom as you would in warmer temperatures. The gloves come in five sizes from S to XXL and have a Velcro wrist strap for minor adjustments.
Best for Ice Fishing: Stormr Typhoon Ice Fishing Gloves
The Stormr Typhoon Ice Fishing Gloves are made with the serious winter fisherman in mind. They are crafted from 3mm, high-stretch neoprene for unparalleled flexibility and are naturally windproof and water-resistant. This means that if your hands get splashed with water, it beads and slides off before it has time to soak in (although they won’t keep you dry if you immerse them completely). The extended wrist gives you added protection when retrieving and releasing your catch, or when posing with a trophy fish for photos.
The gloves are designed to fit like a second skin which helps to trap body heat. The micro-fleece lining feels cozy when you slip them on and also wicks moisture if you work up a sweat reeling in the big one. Use the palm’s rubberized honeycomb grip to get a firm hold on hooks, bait, and struggling fish. Other highlights of these gloves include their durable blind-stitched, liquid-taped seams, their easy on and off design, and their natural flotation. There are five available sizes ranging from S to XXL.
Best for Saltwater Fishing: Pelagic Battle Gloves
Saltwater fishing requires a sturdier glove capable of tackling powerful game fish in an offshore environment. Made with Kevlar reinforcement, the Pelagic Battle Gloves are up to the challenge. They will protect your hands from the heaviest monofilament, braid or wire lines, and can handle a variety of other tasks from fish handling and filleting to grabbing billfish at the fighting end. Open fingertips give you the dexterity you need to tie traces and set up intricate bait systems.
It’s important to note that these gloves are not meant for keeping your hands warm. Instead, they’re designed with tropical bluewater destinations in mind, boasting lightweight material, moisture-wicking properties, and a performance sweatband. Use the adjustable Velcro strap to keep the gloves firmly in place. There are three sizes to choose from — S/M, M/L, or L/XL.
Best UV Protection: Glacier Glove Abaco Bay Sun Gloves
If you’re looking for protection from the sun rather than from fish spines and tough lines, the Glacier Glove Abaco Bay Sun Gloves could be exactly what you’re looking for. Made from an ultra-light blend of Lycra and spandex, they offer 50+ UV protection and will stop you from getting burned even if you fish from dawn to dusk. Gloves like these are a great alternative to sunscreen, which has to be reapplied throughout the day to be effective and may affect the scent of your bait.
Four-way stretch allows for incredible flexibility — so much so that you’ll barely notice you’re wearing them. Although they won’t protect you from wayward hooks or snapping teeth the gloves do give you a better grip on slimy fish, making it easier to unhook them safely. This grip also comes in handy when transferring bait from the live well to your hook. The gloves are quick to dry and come in three sizes: XS/S, S/M, or L/XL. They are the most affordable sun gloves in the Glacier Glove range.
Best for Filleting: Rapala Fillet Glove
You’ve had a successful day out on the water and now it’s time to clean your catch for dinner. Scaling, slicing, and sawing through tough bone and cartilage can be a difficult and dangerous job — especially if you’re still at sea and the water’s a little rough. The professionals at top fishing brand Rapala know that even the sharpest knives can slip, which is where their Fillet Glove comes in. Made of trademarked Tuff-Knit yarn, it blends natural and synthetic fibers with stainless steel to deliver just the right combination of comfort and protection.
Because your other hand will be safe behind the knife’s hilt, these gloves are sold solo but can fit on either hand. There are three sizes to choose from: small, medium, or large. Note that the glove is exclusively meant for filleting; it won't save you from puncturing hooks nor will it protect you from the cold.
Best for Braid Casting: Gamakatsu Casting Finger Protector
Although it’s not a true glove, the Finger Protector from respected hook manufacturer Gamakatsu is a lifesaver for anyone casting with braid. Essentially a sleeve for your index finger, the protector prevents the braid from slicing through your skin. It’s also handy for fly fishermen as a defense against the friction burns caused by stripping line all day long. The protector is made of long-lasting, chafe-free neoprene and reinforced with heavy-duty material underneath the finger. It’s kept in place by an integrated wristband. One size fits all and you can wear it on either your left or right hand.
Our writers spent 4 hours researching the most popular fishing gloves on the market. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 13 different fishing gloves overall, screened options from 8 different brands and manufacturers, read over 30 user reviews (both positive and negative), and tested 1 of the fishing gloves themselves. All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.