From the get go, let’s just make sure that everyone is on the same page, in that coming off a scooter at 30 MPH is pretty much the same as coming off a motorcycle at 30 MPH. Both instances are going to hurt, you will most likely tumble and skid, and you need to have appropriate protection for both types of two wheeled transport.
This isn’t to say that scooters or motorcycles are inherently dangerous. It’s just that neither has the safety cell around you like a car does, so you need to dress appropriately for your ride.
With that in mind, we have brought together some of the best motorcycle gloves that are also suited for scooter use. In general, these are lightweight, ventilated gloves that will have you arriving at your destination without your hands being slicked with sweat. These gloves also carry enough protection that if you do come off, your hands will be safe and protected.
We break these gloves down into three segments: Entry Level (sub $75), Mid-Range ($75 to $100), and High End ($100 and over).
Cortech is a manufacturer that understands not everyone can afford to spend $200 or more on a good quality glove, and as such has become one of the best known “budget brands.” That is in quotes because while their prices are low, their gear quality is not.
A warm weather glove, the Hyper-Flo Air uses genuine goat leather on the palm as well as across the knuckles, with airflow mesh along the fingers and near the wrist on the back of the hand. As well, the knuckles and the fingers include ventilated TPU armor to provide maximum cooling air around your hand, even under the armor.
The gloves even include small TPU blade edge and thumb sliders, so if you do come off, your hands are protected from pretty much every angle. To top it off, at a price of $40, the gloves are also touch capacitive on the thumb and index fingers, so you can set your navigation before setting off without having to take the gloves off!
If you’re looking for a glove that combines a more subtle approach to armor and also allows your hand to breathe as much as possible, the Icon Anthem II’s are hard to beat at $40. While they do not carry as much full armor as the Cortech’s above, they do still offer protection for the speeds that most scooters cruise at.
Using a synthetic leather palm, the biggest feature of the Anthem II gloves is the massive air mesh backhand, which allows the most cooling air in of almost any glove on this list. This material is rip-stop polyester with some spandex mixed in, giving it stretch and durability. The knuckle armor is of Icon’s D3O TPU style, which is soft and flexible normally, but will harden to near steel-like density if impacted because of some clever materials engineering and design.
The thumb and finger are touchscreen enabled, and the neoprene cuff is soft and hypoallergenic against your skin. The only thing that these gloves are missing, honestly, is waterproofing, as the mesh will allow moisture to pass both ways, wicking sweat away from your skin and allowing it to evaporate, but it will also let rain in if you are caught out in the weather.
While the Cortech Hyper-Flo Airs and Icon Anthem II’s above are some of the best budget gloves on the market, we do understand here at MotorScooterGuide that often, your scooter choice is also a bit of a personal statement, an accessory to fit your aesthetic, and having a “sporty” glove with big armor points does not align well. For you, we present the AlpineStars Shore (mens) and Stella Shore (womens) warm weather gloves.
At first glance, they may not seem to offer much, if any protection, yet these gloves pack a lot of advanced protective features into them at a budget price. A full leather palm provides abrasion protection, while a synthetic suede knife edge and on the fingers help provide structural strength without stiffening the glove.
A non-Newtonian impact foam covers the knuckles, one of the newest styles of armor on the market that is highly effective, while the back of the hand and the fingers provide maximum mesh airflow while also providing rip-stop and abrasion resistant protection.
Topping it all off, the index finger of each glove is touchscreen enabled, and the wrist closure is a stretch neoprene and spandex combined material to provide some light waterproofing in case it drizzles down while you’re riding and won’t let water seep up into your jacket sleeves. For $50, you get great protection and subtle, understated style, and we can’t think of a better glove at this price point that combines both so well.
Rev’It is one of the most respected motorcycle gear companies in the world, constantly balancing between supreme protection and affordable prices, as they pass down all the research and development that goes into their powersports professional gear to the consumer market. The Mosca is a perfect example of this, the offspring of enduro and multi-day rally research and development to make a comfortable, budget-friendly riding glove that can take a beating.
The palms are full drum dyed goatskin with a water resistant finish, giving you both excellent handle feel and abrasion protection. The palm, finger knuckles, and thumb knuckle get a full non-Newtonian foam treatment, meaning when not protecting against an impact, these areas are soft and comfortable, but will harden when force is applied to them.
The main knuckle is made of visco-elastic armor covered in the same non-Newtonian foam. This means that it will stretch and move with your hand, while also providing that same level of softness when riding, and armor during an impact.
The back of the glove is made of Rev’It’s durable polyester-based PWRShield material, in a tight knit that provides some water resistance, massive abrasion resistance, and allowing air to pass through and wick away sweat. This means you can get splashed from a puddle, ride in light rain, or simply enjoy a sunny day’s trip without having to worry about your hands getting too hot or getting wet.
Leaving behind the budget marketplace and entering into the mid-range, the first glove here is the excellent Scorpion EXO-Talon. While Scorpion, much like Cortech, is all about bringing top level protection to the budget friendly consumer, the Talon is bringing what could easily be a top tier sport glove to a reasonable price for everyone.
The Talon may not look all that different from previous gloves, yet it is the small details that make this glove easily worth every penny. Top grain goatskin covers the palm and fingers, with synthetic leather on the outer palm and between the thumb and index finger for both grip and structural support. A breathable, water resistant mesh covers the back of the hand and between the fingers, and carries a comfort liner inside that helps wick away moisture to be evaporated through the mesh.
In terms of protection, the hard, ventilated TPU knuckles provide surprisingly high airflow, while the fingers get extra leather on the tips and first knuckle sliders. What is particularly impressive, and shows some excellent design from Scorpion, is that the Talon also features ulnar protection with a patch of leather extending up the outside of the arm to cover the tip of the ulnar bone, which is very close to the skin surface.
For $75, this glove is among the best sub-$100 options on the market. Plus, one of our writers uses it as his go-to warm weather pair of gloves on his motorcycle.
Let’s face it, there is an entire market sector of scooters aimed at those that want to ride in classic Italian style. Vespas, Piaggios, Aprilias, you name it, people want to ride it. So having a classic leather glove with inimitable Italian style is what Dainese has brought forth with the Blackjack gloves.
As they proudly print on the wrist closure, these gloves are styled to look like they’ve been through a time warp from 1972. Using a full leather construction, of course using premium Italian goatskin, the Blackjack’s are designed to fit in with the usual ¾ helmet and light leather jacket vibe of most classic and retro scooter riders. This is not to say, however, that their protection is from the 1970s as well.
Semi-hard knuckle protectors, and soft foam impact protectors along the fingers provide protection against the pavement. A double reinforced, triple stitched palm and palm heel area give you a lot of abrasion protection, while leaving the upper palm and fingers at a single layer to feel the handlebars and what the front wheel is doing while riding.
Dainese is famous for their sport-oriented leather gear, and that same level of protection and quality is brought over to these retro styled gloves for the retro scooter and motorcycle rider.
One of these products is the well-reviewed and highly-rated Induction 3 season glove, which while not being renamed with each iteration, has been updated a couple of times since their introduction as personal protection technology does not sit still for anyone.
With the chassis being made of full premium goat leather, you have a soft but highly abrasion resistant glove that should see you through everything but the coldest weather. The glove is perforated for airflow and to allow sweat to be wicked away, while the wrist features a full mesh panel that allows for airflow out of the glove from the perforations.
The biggest feature of the current 2020 edition of the glove, however, is that the fingers, palm pad, and thumb have Poron XRD non-Newtonian foam armor. This foam is soft, breathable, and pliable when no force is on it, but even something as light as slapping your palm against a wall will have it harden to the same strength as automotive steel.
The carbon fiber knuckle protection also has a lining underneath of Poron XRD. The glove is also sewn together using what are known as lap seams, giving the glove superior structural strength without making them uncomfortable.
To top it off, Klim is cognizant that inclement weather can happen even on the clearest of days, and that insects meeting your goggles, sunglasses, or visor while you are riding is inconvenient.
As such, as with almost all of their gloves, the left glove has a soft rubber squeegee blade on the inside of the index finger, to clear away rain or the remains of insects that are in your sightline. Just a small touch that Klim likes to include on almost all their gloves that is surprisingly useful.
The newest REV’IT Hawk gloves! wonderfully combine contemporary, well-masked protection with timeless design.
These leather summer hand guards with short cuffs have a number of useful functions. The Hawk has robust knuckle guards and protection on the fingers and palm made of flexible yet strong goat skin. Stretch zones are a need for those hot summer rides since they guarantee flexibility of movement and a great sensation via the handlebars.
The only full gauntlet glove on the list today, the Knox Covert Mk II is here for a very specific reason. That reason is that not all people riding scooters live where the temperatures are always pleasant, and might have to right through wind, rain, sleet, or any combination of them all. Basically, this glove is ideal for riding in the North of the USA and Canada.
The Covert Mk II’s are here because they are both waterproof and windproof, with a full gauntlet wrist closure that will fit almost any jacket sleeve underneath. The chassis of the glove is made from powersports grade 1.0mm cowhide, with 0.8mm goat leather overlays in the palm pad and fingers for extra durability and abrasion resistance.
Non-Newtonian biofoam protects the thumb, back of the hand, and the wrist, while Knox’s own SPS protection system provides hard palm sliders to give you the best protection possible. The knuckles are covered by Knox’s thin but resilient CE level 1 armor, which reduces the overall weight of the glove significantly when compared to traditional TPU knuckle armor.
Lastly, the wrist features a double closure system of a zip for main fit, with a velco closure for tightening the wrist closure around your jacket or skin. The glove uses the OutDry system instead of a waterproofing layer like GoreTex, meaning that the glove is thin but warm, and your hands will stay dry even if you have to struggle home through a Pacific Northwest storm.