The 9 Best Mittens of 2021

Options for serious skiers, kids, and those glued to their smartphones

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The Rundown
These mittens would perform just as well on a ski slope as they would on an impromptu winter walk with the dog.
These mittens will give you that warmth you’re looking for, and they let you sneak your fingers out..
Equipped with a removable liner and PrimaLoft Gold insulation, they'll keep your fingers from getting cold.
White goose down insulation is the workhorse of the design, while a removable waterproof liner adds a further layer of protection.
Each thumb also features a "nose wipe," or a soft bit of fabric that’s gentle on the skin.
If you find yourself switching between being too hot and too cold, this is a great option.
One of the hidden gems of this design is an interior name label.
Not only are they touchscreen-friendly, but they also have a small zippered pouch for housing small objects on each hand.
If you’re looking for a pair of mittens you can toss in the washing machine, you found them.

There are few things cozier than slipping your hands into a warm pair of mittens once the temperatures dip. Whether you’re outside hitting the ski slopes or just taking in the wintry views with a cup of hot chocolate, keeping your hands warm is a key to comfort. There are a lot of options out there, so carefully consider what kind of work you’ll be putting your mittens through.

If you’re planning on getting into the snow, opt for something waterproof with a warm lining. There are plenty of lighter knit mittens on the market, as well, if you just need an extra layer of warmth to combat the fall air. Keep in mind that material really matters when it comes to picking the right mittens for you: thicker materials like leather will hold up longer compared to wool or knit options.

Ahead, we picked out some of our favorite mittens and researched them for a number of qualities: warmth, material durability, water resistance, and fit.

Best Overall: The North Face Women’s Montana Futurelight Etip Mitt

North Face Montana Futurelight Etip Mitt
What We Like
  • Very warm

  • Water resistant

  • Touchscreen compatible

What We Don't Like
  • Bulkier than other mittens

Water resistant: Yes | Liner: Yes

The Montana mittens from The North Face have a little bit of everything: water-resistance, touchscreen-compatible fingertips, warmth, and a full-coverage design with an elastic wrist guard that will keep snow and rain out of the mitten. These mittens would perform just as well on a ski slope as they would keeping your hands warm on an impromptu winter walk with the dog. This mitten is also offered in a slightly adjusted fit (with all of the same features) for men.

Best Fingerless: ViGrace Winter Knitted Convertible Fingerless Mittens

What We Like
  • Convertible design

  • Warmth

What We Don't Like
  • One-size-fits-most sizing

  • Not water resistant

Water resistant: No | Liner: No

Sometimes you want the best of both worlds: a full-on mitten to keep your hands warm and the option to pop out your fingers for a few minutes of fresh air. These convertible mittens from ViGrace offer just that. Made of 50 percent wool and 50 percent acrylic, these mittens are not water resistant, but they will give you that warmth you’re looking for. The unisex style is great for any mitten weather. The finger flap is attached with a piece of velcro on the back of the mitten. The palm/thumb of the mitten also features a piece of leather for better grip. These mittens are best worn when you know you won’t be digging around in the snow.

Best Leather: Hestra Wakayama Insulated Mitten

Hestra Gloves Wakayama Insulated Mittens
What We Like
  • Removable liner

  • Wide sizing range

  • Luxe leather material

What We Don't Like
  • No touchscreen compatibility

Water resistant: Not listed | Liner: Yes, removable

These unisex leather mittens from Hestra are stunning, not only for their buttery leather construction, but also for the punch they pack when it comes to insulation. Equipped with a removable liner and PrimaLoft Gold insulation, your fingers won’t go cold. This design features a handcuff to better secure the mitten to your hand. and a paracord around the wrist will allow the wearer to adjust the fit to their liking. These mittens come in six different sizes, as well, so there’s a fit for any hand.

Best for Extreme Cold: Canada Goose Arctic Down Mittens - Women's

Canada Goose Arctic Down Mitts
What We Like
  • Fantastic temperature control

  • Waterproof liner


What We Don't Like
  • Bulky design

  • No touchscreen compatibility

Water resistant: Yes | Liner: Yes

Choosing a pair of mittens for an extreme environment is serious business, and these mitts from Canada Goose will keep you warm and safe from the elements. White goose down insulation is the workhorse of the design, while a removable waterproof liner adds a further layer of protection. The cuffs also feature a fleece lining and a drawcord to ensure a close fit. These will be entirely too warm for a walk around the neighborhood, but you’ll be thanking yourself for packing these mittens if you’re ever off to ski slopes...or the Arctic during the winter. These are available in an adjusted fit for men.

Best for Skiing: L.L. Bean Men's Gore-Tex PrimaLoft Ski Mittens

Men's L.L.Bean Gore-Tex PrimaLoft Ski Mittens
What We Like
  • Nose wipe on thumbs

  • Waterproof liner

  • Palm grip

What We Don't Like
  • Not touchscreen compatible

Water resistant: Yes | Liner: Yes

These polyester ski mittens from L.L.Bean combine the power of a polyurethane palm and a waterproof Gore-Tex liner to make sure you start warm and your ski poles stay put. Each thumb also features a “nose wipe,” or a soft bit of fabric that’s gentle on the skin. A chase leash is also designed into the mittens, so you won’t lose them after any spills or tumbles.

Best Knit: Ugg Knit Flip Mitten with Conductive Leather Palm

UGG Knit Flip Mitten
What We Like
  • Convertible design

  • Leather grip patch

What We Don't Like
  • Not water resistant

Water resistant: No | Liner: No

Ugg’s Knit Flip mitten is a convertible design, meaning it can be worn as a mitten or a glove. If you find yourself switching between being too hot and too cold, this is a great option, since you can seamlessly switch between the two styles. These mittens are made of nylon, wool, and acrylic and feature a magnetic flip closure so you won’t have to deal with any wool flapping around in the wind. There’s also a leather patch on the palm of the mitten, adding to your grip power. These unisex mittens are simple in style, so they’ll pair perfectly with all kinds of outdoor wear and wouldn’t look out of place with a pair of jeans and a flannel shirt.

Best for Kids: L.L. Bean Cold Buster Waterproof Mittens

L.L.Bean Kids Cold Buster Waterproof Mittens
What We Like
  • Waterproof

  • Name label

What We Don't Like
  • No leash or cable

Water resistant: Yes | Liner: No, but they are lined

There are a couple of things you want in a kid-approved mitten: water-resistance, warm lining, ease of putting on and taking off, and protection against misplacement. The Cold Buster mittens from L.L.Bean check all of the boxes, and then some. One of the hidden gems of this design is an interior name label. What this means: You can mark your child’s mittens, which are bound to get lost in a mountain of outdoor gear at some point. There’s an easy-to-use Velcro closure on each of the wrists, as well, so you can make sure they’ll stay put through any adventure.

Best Touchscreen: Eddie Bauer Powder Search Touchscreen Mittens

Eddie Bauer Powder Search Touchscreen Mittens
What We Like
  •  Zip pocket

What We Don't Like
  • Touchscreen compatibility

Water resistant: Yes | Liner: No, but they are lined

Not only are the Powder Search mittens from Eddie Bauer touchscreen friendly, but they also have a small zippered pouch for housing small objects on each hand. That may not sound super helpful until you have to find a spot for your house key while taking your daily winter stroll around the block. You can even store an extra heating pad in there for extra warmth. These mittens are packed with ThermaFill insulation and a soft-brushed lining and feature cuffs that seal out snow and other moisture.

Best Wool: Smartwool Knit Mitt

Smartwool Knit Mitt
What We Like
  • Touchscreen-compatible thumbs

  • Minimal style

What We Don't Like
  •  Not water resistant

  • No liner

Water resistant: No | Liner: No

If you’re looking for a pair of mittens you can toss in the washing machine, you found them. These unisex wool mittens from Smartwool are beautifully minimal and come without any major bells and whistles. The design does feature a touchscreen compatible thumb, which certainly comes in handy, but don’t expect these mittens to keep you warm and dry in the middle of a snowstorm. They're more for everyday wear. Available in three colors, they also have a ribbed cuff to help keep your body heat inside. While there are more serious mittens out there, the simple design of these is actually quite eye-catching.

Final Verdict

There’s a surprising amount of variety when it comes to mittens. For something that will fit any situation, opt for the North Face Montana Futurelight Etip Mitt (view at North Face), which will keep you warm and dry, if a little bulky. For a lighter option when you don’t need waterproof protection,  the Smartwool Knit Mitt (view at Smartwool) is a simple option that will look great with whatever you’re wearing. For extreme warmth, the Canada Goose Arctic Down Mitts (view at Canada Goose) will keep you safe from the elements.

What to Look For When Buying Mittens

Material

Many mittens are made of wool, nylon, or acrylic fabrics. While not water resistant, wool is a great insulator for dry environments and will keep your body heat maintained in the mitten. Nylon will keep your hands dry as it’s generally water resistant. Make sure to keep your winter activities in mind when choosing your mittens.

Waterproofing

Unless you know you’re only going to be wearing your mittens in dry environments, it’s best to get a pair that can withstand a little rain and snow. Luckily, most sports mittens are equipped for handling these scenarios, while trapping in your body heat.

Removable Liners

Some mittens come with removable liners—which are often waterproof—to help add a layer of heat and dryness. The perk of removable liners is that they can be washed (check with the manufacturer for washing instructions) or taken out to lighten your mittens for warmer weather.

FAQs

How do I wash my mittens?

It’s best to check with the manufacturer for washing instructions. Generally, spot clean all of your mittens with a damp cloth and a bit of dish soap or laundry detergent. Do not put any wool mittens in the washer or dryer—they’ll shrink up beyond recognition. Removable liners should be spot cleaned and aired out instead of sent through a washer or dryer.

Do I need a removable liner?

You don’t need one as many mitten designs come with built-in liners made of fleece or other insulation materials. Removable liners are great if you want to wear your mittens in warmer temperatures. Taking the liner out will give you hands extra breathing room.

Why Trust TripSavvy?

Erika Owen is a cold-weather enthusiast and had to find the perfect pair of mittens for a January trip to the Swedish Lapland a few years back. Needless to say, warmth and temperature control were top of mind. She researched each of these products and owns (and loves) the Hestra Gloves Wakayama Insulated Mittens.

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