Rock Climbing with Gloves 🔥 The Best Ones & Buying Guide

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If you have fun climbing and you like to spend your time on the rock or in the climbing gym, you should take care of your fingers! Your fingers are challenged when climbing in different ways. If you cling to rough cliffs, climb to dizzying heights on sharp-edged cliffs, or pull yourself up on a wire rope, your fingers will suffer. High-quality climbing gloves can protect your stressed hands and protect them from painful tears or calluses! 

Even if your skin is particularly sensitive, there are gloves specially developed for climbers with great feal and control. There are now many models on the market that provide excellent grip, so you’ll find optimum grip on the rope or rock. More and more climbers opt for this finger protection to avoid having to take a break due to torn or callused hands.

Here are the best climbing gloves on the market:

For whom and why are Climbing Gloves advisable?

If climbing is your great passion, your hands and fingers will suffer both when climbing and when abseiling and securing. Holding, pulling up and clutching rough rock and ropes can damage your skin. If you should slip off the rope or if you want to secure yourself, burns and calluses are not uncommon in direct skin contact. 

Climbing gloves can provide effective protection for your hands and fingers and also protect you from the cold. The special coating on the inside of the climbing gloves ensures excellent control over the climbing rope. If you like to climb fixed-rope routes, the padding provides excellent protection against protruding wire residues.

Protect your hands with gloves while belaying!

When carabiners get hot, climbing gloves can effectively protect you from burns. With climbing gloves, you can also stop a fast rope effectively without destroying your hands!

Climbing gloves are therefore recommended if you are securing your climbing partner or abseiling yourself.

Climbing gloves are not only recommended for outdoor climbers but even if you are bouldering in the gym or climbing dizzying heights, you should care for your hands.

Climbing gloves are recommended for alpine climbers, fixed-rope fans, sports climbers and indoor climbers!

What are the Different Types of Climbing Gloves?

Whether high-alpine and technical climbing or bouldering in the gym – the requirements for these special gloves vary depending on the intended use.

In general you can choose between half finger gloves* and closed gloves*.

Both variants make it easier for you to climb. Climbing gloves are already part of the climbing equipment for many climbing fans in order to protect their hands and fingers!

In the following section, we will introduce you to both types of gloves and make it easier for you to make a purchase decision, as we will introduce both types in detail and show you their advantages and disadvantages.

What are Half Finger Gloves?


The obvious thing about half finger gloves is that the fingertips are missing. The leather or synthetic material ends either above or just below the middle phalanx. The tipless gloves offer a great deal of mobility because your fingertip is free.

To prevent the glove from slipping, a Velcro fastener is attached to the wrist.

These climbing gloves, mostly made of leather or nylon, are extra reinforced on the inside of the hand. Half-finger gloves withstand the extreme stress of sharp rocks, ice and rope runs.

Half finger gloves are popular with rock climbers and also in the gym the gloves without fingertips are becoming more and more popular.

Climbing is a strenuous and sweaty sport. An essential advantage is that you sweat less in half-finger climbing gloves than in closed gloves. Especially in the warm summer months, you can benefit from the open gloves!

Your fingers are free and you have full touch with your fingertips!

Crack Climbing Gloves*

In contrast to closed climbing gloves, models without fingertips offer less protection from the cold. On cold days you get cold fingertips even with half finger gloves. Since half-finger gloves only reach up to the middle phalanx, there is a risk that your fingertips will tear your skin open on rocks, wire remnants or that you will burn yourself when slipping or touching the hot karabiner. Since your fingertips are unprotected, you cannot prevent calluses. In addition, the formation of cornea in the unprotected areas increases.


  • Perfect for outdoor and indoor climbers
  • Excellent mobility
  • Better hold
  • Very good control and feel
  • No wet fingertips
  • Ideal for warm temperatures


  • Less protection against cold
  • Greater risk of injury to the fingertips
  • Formation of cornea on fingertips increases.

Although climbing gloves prove to be very popular, many rock climbers and boulderers still do without this equipment. The reason for this is that experienced climbers are obsessed with maximum grip. Half-finger gloves reduce the grip feeling by a few percents.

What are Closed Climbing Gloves?


In these models, the entire fingers are surrounded by leather or synthetic material. They are fixed to the wrist with Velcro, just like half finger gloves.

The structure and the processing are actually identical. The only difference is the additional fingertip.

Closed models are popular with fixed-rope route fans and even if you visit or secure a high ropes course, these types are ideal.

During climbing activities, closed models can protect against frayed ropes, protruding wires, sharp rocks, rough grips and hot karabiners.

Especially in the cold season, you can prevent cold fingers!

In contrast to half finger gloves, fingertip models are warmer and more sweat is produced. This can reduce the wearing comfort in summer.

A further disadvantage is the minimized sense of touch. As climbing gloves limit mobility and finger freedom, climbers report less wearing comfort.

You can also opt for closed makes where the fingertips of the index finger and thumb are exposed. These types of climbing gloves represent an excellent compromise of good feel for the rock, the grip, the wire and climbing rope, and good finger protection.


  • Ideal for climbing fixed-rope routes, high rope courses and belaying
  • Effective protection against injuries to palms and fingers
  • Very good cold protection


  • You don’t feel the rock face as good
  • More sweaty hands
  • Unpleasant at high temperatures
  • Limited mobility

Which Climbing Gloves for Sensitive Skin?

If your fingers are particularly sensitive, your choice should be gloves with fingertips. Your focus should also be on high-quality padding so that your sensitive fingers are well protected even on rough and sharp rocks.

Which Climbing Gloves for Unrestricted Tactile Sensitivity?

If you want an unrestricted sense of touch, you should use thinner climbing gloves. Models without fingertips are ideal!

Your sensitive skin is well protected while your fingertips are in direct contact with the rock or rope.

Quality Features of the Best Climbing Gloves:

The wide range of different special gloves for climbers is huge and therefore the buying decision is particularly difficult. In the following guide, we will tell you about the most important features that a high-quality climbing glove must have in order to be among the best on the market!


Generally climbing gloves are available in two material variants. In addition to leather models, climbing gloves are also available in synthetically manufactured materials.

Leather Climbing Gloves

If you choose leather climbing gloves*, you can look forward to a long life. Leather models are more durable, so you can use them longer than synthetic gloves. Leather is extremely robust and adapts perfectly to the shape of your hands and fingers. When choosing leather gloves, you should be aware that they may feel a little stiff and tight at first. The more often you wear your new leather gloves, the more they adapt to your hands and fingers!

A significant downer is their price, which is higher for leather models. If a natural material, durability and an excellent fit are important to you and you climb frequently, the investment is worthwhile.

Synthetic Climbing Gloves

If you don’t want to invest too much money in climbing gloves and don’t climb regularly, buying synthetic gloves is a cheap alternative. Models in the lower price range are already available from 20 bucks*.

Unlike leather gloves, synthetic climbing gloves do not feel particularly stiff or too tight at first.

What Size should Climbing Gloves be?

The size of your climbing gloves depends on the material. If you choose leather models, you should buy a tight pair, as leather expands a little with frequent use. The majority of experts advise buying leather gloves one size smaller so that the leather can expand and not wear out after a few uses. The gloves should be tightly wrapped around your hands and fingers and should not be loose.

Models that are too wide reduce the sensitivity and comfort is reduced.

When using synthetic materials, make sure that the gloves are not too tight. This material has only minimal to no stretching properties.

How much do High-Quality Climbing Gloves Cost?

The price range is large and so is the quality and longevity. With these special gloves, you should note that a higher price is usually an indication of a higher quality. There are of course exceptions! The cheapest synthetic models* cost 20 bucks and more, while the cheapest leather gloves* are available from 35.

Medium and high-end brands often offer better quality and better test results.

Where can I buy Climbing Gloves?

You have the choice between climbing equipment shops, sports shops, and online shops like amazon*. You can try on the climbing gloves before buying them in a specialist shop or sports shop. If you buy climbing gloves online, you can return them after the purchase if you do not like them.

A major advantage of online merchants is the enormous selection. In addition, the price is often significantly lower than in a specialist shop or sports shop. The comparison possibilities are excellent online and the ordered climbing gloves will be delivered to the desired address within a few days.

Buying Guide for Climbing Gloves

Based on these factors you can compare different climbing gloves with each other and form an opinion about the pros and cons.

Among the most important criteria are the quality of the materials used and the fit. The wearing comfort is also increased by cushioning. Pay attention to high durability! Only robust materials are durable!

For an excellent grip, the surface should be slightly roughened.


Current tests give you an overview of the quality of the most common climbing gloves. Not all materials are characterized by longevity and robustness! Leather is particularly resistant!

When it comes to quality, you shouldn’t make any compromises! Small mistakes and careless processing of the seams can significantly reduce the wearing comfort! If you slip into your new climbing gloves, you should not feel any pressure points due to unclean seams!

Low-grade climbing gloves can fray and chafe after only a short time and cannot withstand the strain.


Climbing gloves are very tight to your hand and fingers. Therefore you should not feel any painful pressure points! Note, however, that leather models expand and you should, therefore, choose a smaller size. Gloves made of synthetic materials do not adapt so well to the shape of your hand and do not stretch.

Climbing gloves are available in different sizes!


The Velcro fastener should open and close easily with one hand. In addition, the velcro should prevent the glove from coming off, even under heavy loads during climbing.


Make sure that the climbing gloves provide a good sense of touch! Your climbing gloves should not hinder you or restrict your movement.

Don’t choose too small climbing gloves, as tight-fitting models prevent or minimize the blood flow to the fingers. There is hardly any other sport where sensitivity is as important as in climbing and you should consequently choose a material that is not too stiff. You should be able to feel the rope and grips through your gloves clearly to climb successfully and safely.


To prevent moisture and sweat from accumulating between your fingers and the glove, your gloves should be breathable. In this sweaty sport, sweat forms on the fingers and palms, which should be removed.


Abrasion resistance is an important buying criterion. A look at the climbing glove test will help you find out which gloves have high abrasion resistance and are durable.

Pull-out Straps

Some climbing gloves are equipped with pull-out flaps or straps. This extra is not absolutely necessary, but it can make it easier for you to take them off. You can also attach the gloves with these on a karabiner.


Your pick is also influenced by your budget. Climbing gloves are offered in all price ranges. Well-known manufacturers usually offer their models at a higher price than an unknown brand. 

Leather models are generally more expensive than synthetic models.

A fair price-performance ratio is provided by price-performance winners in various tests.

If you want to buy a high-quality climbing glove and don’t want to spend too much money, you can, for example, choose a top model from the previous year.

Online shops usually offer a lower price than specialist retailers or sports shops!

Frequency of Use

Think about whether you will use your climbing gloves only rarely or more often. If you want to do this sport regularly, you should choose a high quality and durable model, which is usually a little more expensive. Low-quality gloves are cheap, but not suitable for regular use.

Bottom Line

Climbing gloves are practical equipment if you want to protect your hands and fingers when climbing. They prevent cracks, burns and injuries caused by rough rocks and protruding wires and also protect when abseiling. Pay attention to excellent quality, workmanship, fit and choose an abrasion-resistant as well as robust material!

The tactile capacity should be limited only slightly and the glove should not show any pressure points.

Attention: You have to take care of your safety when climbing! The information on only helps you to learn. Before you climb, you should make sure that you have been properly instructed by an expert and that you follow all safety precautions.

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