Gear list developed by: Simon Bertram and Brittany Morrow
Alongside your feet and your posterior, your hands are two of the five major contact points that control a bike. Clutch, throttle, front brakes, trip computer, signals, headlights, and so much more are at your literal fingertips, so you should be keeping those fingers and hands protected.
Long cuff gloves, also known as gauntlet style, are some of the best gloves you can wear. The extra length over the wrists and forearms provides a layer of abrasion and impact protection above and beyond your jacket or one-piece race suit. As well, many long cuff gloves have multiple closures, reinforcing the strength of the gloves and preventing them from coming off your hands unless you want them to.
We have read reviews, done our research, and come up with this list of the 7 best long cuff or gauntlet gloves you can get on the market right now. This is, as always, a list based on our opinions and a lot of feedback we’ve seen on forums and Reddit about real life usage of many of these models.
The Alpinestars SP-8 V2 is one of their best gloves at the $100 mark for both men and women. You get full grain leather construction, with resilient double stitching and reinforcements on the palm and heel of the glove. Knuckle and finger armor is in the form of a polymer impact structure knuckle guard and finger guards, and outside and inside edge slide zones with reinforced dual layer leather.
A neat feature of the glove is that without compromising on safety, Alpinestars have managed to add a capacitive touch area to the index finger tip. As more and more bikes feature smartphone integration or touch screen GPS and computer systems, having that touch screen capability is a forward-thinking move.
REV’IT! League and Xena 3 gloves are technically the same glove, but named differently for men and women. Featuring a combination of goatskin leather and cowhide leather, the gloves feature a full range of protective armor and slide zones to keep your hands safe.
The knuckles are protected by a dual set of TPU hard shell impact plastic with EVA foam behind it. The palms, heel, and gauntlet closure all feature impact absorbing EVA foam, while the cuff, base of the outer thumb, and outer edge of the hand feature hard TPU sliders. The cuff and gauntlet also feature a secure double closure with Velcro fastening.
The Rukka Virium gloves are designed for long distance touring or day trips. Fully waterproof due to a Gore-Tex liner, the gloves nonetheless breathe well and will not be overly hot or cold. The finger and thumb have touchscreen capacitive membranes without sacrificing protection, allowing you to adjust settings on your bike’s touchscreen or use your phone once safely pulled over without having to remove your gloves.
Protection comes in the form of impact resistant foam in the knuckles and fingers, and a double strength layer along the edge of the hand. The palms and heel feature padding and slide zones, but also have extra grippy surfaces to keep your hands on the controls without slipping in the wet. Lastly, and in a nod to long distance riding, there is a visor wiping blade along the left index finger should you ride through rain.
The Dainese Steel Pro gloves are CE rated for track and street use. Basically, these are racing gloves that offer some of the best protection for trackdays. The Steel part of Steel Pro comes in the form of shaped composite inserts on the back of the hand that hold preformed stainless steel and thermoplastic resin, aka the stuff that helmets are made out of, on the knuckles as well as the back of the hand.
The palms are fully padded with multiple slide points of hard resin, while the entire glove is made of double reinforced goatskin leather. Fingers are also lined with the stainless steel inserts, preventing your fingers from bending in ways that would break them, and the little finger has anti-twisting inserts to prevent rotational forces from causing it to break or dislocate. The cuff is double secured with a tightening strap, followed by a full cuff strap.
For the budget conscious rider, the Scorpion Exo Tempest is a great waterproof glove that also gives great protection for under $100. The glove is line with Hypora lining that allows for heat and moisture to escape, but not let water in. There is a thinsulate liner backing the waterproofing, so during even the coldest mornings or evenings, your hands will stay warm.
The glove has a full goat leather palm that does not have the thinsulate lining to allow for heat from heated grips to pass through, as well as give excellent tactile feel on the controls. Protection is in the form of hard armor on the knuckles and soft armor on the fingers, with slide areas on the palms and heels of the gloves. The gloves are secured with double closures to prevent any splashes of water from sneaking down to your wrists, and both gloves have a visor wiping blade on the inside of the index finger.
The REAX Ridge gloves are designed from the get go to be super durable, yet allow for rider comfort. Cowhide leather comprises the back of the hand and along the sides of the hand and fingers. The palm is made of double thickness goatskin leather. Capacitive touch areas are built into the index finger tip and the thumb pad area.
Protection is in the form of heavy duty impact resistant foam wrapped in leather over the knuckles, with a reinforced slide pad that covers from the side of the hand to the heel of the glove. Reflective highlights make the gloves highly visible at night, and due to a special liner, the gloves are fully breathable but also fully waterproof. A wrist strap allows for fine tuning the fit, while a large velcro closure seals the gauntlet to your forearm or jacket.
The ICON Hypersport GP Gloves are absolutely unbeatable at this price point for the features provided.
The chassis features a perforated french cowhide backhand. A kangaroo palm provides great abrasion resistance and a supple already-broken-in feel from the very first wear. The TPU and titanium molded knuckles are fully CE impact rated. Extra value comes in the form of palm, thumb, fingertip, wrist and side-of-hand TPU sliders that prevent the glove from gripping (and ripping) with the tarmac in case of a crash.
These gloves also feature a two-step closure system for maximum security, a pinky-to-ring finger connection panel, a double-wrapped inner thumb to prevent wear and tear from cranking on the throttle, and all stitching is double reinforced for maximum durability. The only thing these gloves don’t have is waterproofing – so just avoid that wet stuff at all costs and you’re golden.