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Best Overall: Outdoor Research Illuminator Sensor at Amazon
"These dual-shell winter gloves offer incredible warmth and waterproofing."
"A great all-rounder that can take users from garage to ski slope at a great price."
"They provide three layers of maximum protection against strong winds and winter cold."
Best Leather: Downholme Leather Cashmere Lined Gloves at Amazon
"In classically styled leather, they deliver top quality for a relatively reasonable price tag."
Best for Winter Sports: Arc’teryx Fission at Moosejaw
"They offer almost unbeatable water-resistance, warmth, protection and dexterity."
"With their perforated fingers and snappy design, they bring modern flair to a classic look."
Best Golf: Bionic Gloves at Amazon
"The company swears they’ll last up to four times as long as your standard golf glove."
Best Wool: Fox River Four Layer Glove at Amazon
"With a match-anything color, these stylish wool gloves provide layers of warmth."
Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Outdoor Research Illuminator Sensor
These dual-shell winter gloves are likely to become a quick favorite, thanks to their incredible warmth and waterproofing. Made from a nylon-spandex shell and a second polyester-elastane layer, the two combine to deliver maximum cold protection plus maximum dexterity. We like that you can loop these gloves to your wrist via the attached cuffs, so you never have to worry about setting them down and promptly losing or walking off without them (or, in severe weather, having a gust of wind that blows one away).
They’re also breathable and wicking, so if you’re mountaineering or even shoveling snow outside, you won’t have to worry about these making your hands clam up. We also love that they’re touchscreen-friendly (no need to take these off to text a friend or family member back) and fit gracefully under jacket cuffs. The only downside is that these aren’t great in weather colder than 10 degrees Fahrenheit, though they’ll be plenty warm in standard winter conditions.
Best Budget: Carhartt Men’s W.P. Waterproof Insulated Glove
Carhartt is known for making clothing that’s made for working: durable, high-quality and long-lasting denim, shirts and hats are all parts of this everyman company’s heritage. They also do great gloves at very reasonable prices, especially if you’re going to be breaking a bit of a sweat outside. These are incredibly waterproof — with a bonus waterproof insert — and do great at wicking away sweat, too.
The palm is reinforced with a polyurethane palm for extra strength, while inside, the lining is cozy and soft. There’s a built-in nose wipe, because we all know that happens during an icy day, and although they’re old-school levels of bulky, they’re surprisingly nimble — to the point where users report they can pick up individual bolts up off the floor wearing them. These are a great all-rounder that can take users from garage to ski slope at a great price — though they might not hold up for that Everest expedition.
Best Winter: MCTi Waterproof/Windproof Men’s Winter Gloves
If you’re looking for an all-around workhorse, these MCTi gloves will be a great defense against practically anything winter throws your way. The windproof quality is great if you’re on a motorcycle when strong winds can be your worst enemy, and the waterproof quality makes these great for skiing, snowboarding or building a snowman in the front yard.
There are three layers to these gloves, which are what help the elements keep from getting in, plus a three-millimeter foam cushion to help reduce the impacts of shocks and fatigue (great for the 50th time you haul the little ones up the hill via the rope on their toboggan).
Inside, a Thinsulate layer (150g) keeps hands warms, while FAN-TEX keeps moisture away (yep, these gloves wick, too). We also love the adjustable wrist buckles and drawstrings, which help to keep snow from sliding under the gauntlet cuff and chilling vulnerable lower hands.
Best Leather: Downholme Leather Cashmere Lined Gloves
These incredible, classically styled leather gloves deliver top quality for a relatively reasonable price tag — especially considering that they’re lined with an ultra-soft, 100-percent cashmere lining, giving hands an extra layer of plush to envelop them. The outside is gorgeous, too — the gloves are sewn from 100 percent sheepskin leather that naturally molds to the hands.
The leather is strong, but supple enough so that hands and fingers have a full range of motion. Despite the delicate feel of the gloves, however, they hold up over time and don’t get too scratched up with use. You won’t mistake these for a pair of expensive leather gloves — there’s a bit of a telling sheen on the leather — but it’s a great entry product into this luxury category, especially as a birthday or holiday gift.
One downside is that the full range of colors isn’t currently available on Amazon, but keep an eye out for a restock.
Best for Winter Sports: Arc’teryx Fission
No, these certainly aren’t cheap — but they offer almost unbeatable water-resistance, warmth, protection and dexterity when you need it most on the trail. These gloves are great across a wide variety of uses, though we consider them particularly apt for winter sports.
We love the ergonomic shape that cradles your hand the moment you slip it into the glove, as well as the tough leather palm for traction and a flexible, stretchy exterior that lets you move and bend your hand like the glove was a second skin (speaking of, that exterior involves Gore-Tex weather protection, so you know these will keep snow from making your hands damp and cold).
Inside, the glove is soft and warm, thanks to its cozy lining. The downside here is the gauntlet shape, which sometimes allows a bit of snow in to touch the lower portion of your hand, but the benefits honestly outweigh that little critique on an otherwise practically perfect winter sports glove.
Best Driving: Pratt and Hart Touchscreen Leather Driving Gloves
One of the things we love most about driving gloves is the vintage aesthetic that runs through many of them — a look that takes you back to classic cars and the wide open roads. Romanticized? Definitely — especially when your morning commute is the same dreary ordeal each morning.
These gloves, with their perforated fingers and snappy design, add a little more joy back into that daily ritual. We also love that these are touchscreen-comparable on the forefinger and thumb — great if you need to look up or change your GPS directions while on the go. They’re unlined, but at a price this great — much cheaper than other driving gloves we’ve seen — we’d go for them anyway.
And did we mention the price? This pair is far more reasonably priced than other driving gloves we’ve seen, though they’re still constructed from top-quality leather and stitched to last — another reason these are a winner in the driver’s seat.
Best Golf: Bionic Gloves
Golf gloves’ primary purpose is preventing blisters, sure — but that doesn’t mean you’re going to wear any old work gloves on the course. You want something supple and elegant, that envelops the hand and moves with it. Incredibly — for as expensive as these can get — the best pair out there comes in at less than $20.
Relief pads placed exactly where a hand’s natural pressure points are for golfing swoop in to save the day after dozens (well, maybe hundreds) of swings and help to promote a lighter grip in the process, which helps in turn to improve swing speed and exactly how accurate that swing will wind up being. Who knew a glove could do so much? The glove manufacturers also have built-in motion and web zones that help hands move as naturally as possible and ventilate after a few tough holes.
Best of all? These gloves are made to last — the company swears they’ll last up to four times as long as your standard golf glove.
Best Wool: Fox River Four Layer Glove
With a match-anything color, these wool gloves provide a heck of a lot of warmth along with a serious dose of style. Made from 85 percent wool, plus 15 percent nylon for stretch, these go-anywhere gloves are great for everyday winter wear. They’re not cheap, breezy knit, either: They’re lined with ultra-cozy 3M Thinsulate fleece and have an added layer of deer leather reinforcement on the palm and fingers for tougher jobs and to maximize durability.
Also great for grip? The anatomically knit left- and right-hand design, so the glove perfectly fits each hand. Given that these gloves have a few layers to them, they’re a little thicker than you might expect, but the extra padding can come in handy in the winter. Fox River knows how to make quality, too: The company started making socks for lumberjacks at the turn of the 20th century, and it now knits its gloves in the United States before finishing them off in Haiti. If you’re buying these as a gift and aren’t sure of the recipient’s size, the gloves are returnable for a year with a dated receipt if they don’t fit.