What Are The Best Mechanic Gloves? (2020 Review Guide)
When you’re working in the shop, you need serious hand protection or you’re going to get harmed. But, if you haven’t been in the market for a pair of mechanic gloves in the last decade, you may not realize how much glove technology has improved.
Picking a new pair of mechanic gloves can be a bit overwhelming if you’re just getting back in the game. You’ll need to identify the right material technologies and the right ergonomics for your needs.
In this article, we’ll help you choose — and walk you through some of the best mechanic gloves in the process.
Compare The Top 3 Best Mechanic Gloves
- Mechanic Glove Reviews
- #1 – Superior Clutch Gear Grain Goatskin Leather Mechanics Gloves with Thumb Patch
- #2 – Mechanix Wear – Leather FastFit Mechanic Gloves
- #3 – Mechanix Wear – Original Work Gloves
- #4 – CLC Custom Leathercraft 125M Handyman Flex Grip Work Gloves
- #5 – Vgo 3Pairs High Dexterity Heavy Duty Mechanic Glove
- #6 – Vgo 3 Pairs High Dexterity Light Duty Mechanic Glove
- #7 – Work Safety Gloves
- #8 – Mechanix Wear – Original Covert Tactical Gloves
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Which features should I look for in a mechanic’s glove?
- What material should my mechanic’s glove be made from?
- What hazards should I be most concerned about?
- How do I clean my mechanic’s gloves?
- Wrapping Up
Mechanic Glove Reviews
#1 – Superior Clutch Gear Grain Goatskin Leather Mechanics Gloves with Thumb Patch
The goatskin smoothness of these Superior Clutch Gear Mechanic Gloves will keep you protected all day long.
- Reinforced thumb area
- High traction fingertips
- Banded exterior
- Poor ventilation
With these mechanic gloves, you’ll be protected from grease, heat, and mechanical abrasion. These mechanic gloves are tough enough to protect you from the stresses of the workshop but delicate enough that you won’t fumble too much with smaller parts.
Importantly, the medium-duty niche that these mechanic gloves occupy is right for a wide swath of different tasks in the garage. But, you may find that you need mechanic gloves that are a bit thinner for extreme detail work, or heavier mechanic gloves for the most hazardous jobs.
The only issue with these mechanic gloves is that they aren’t very breathable. You may find that your hands are a bit sweaty when you take them off if you have been working strenuously.
#2 – Mechanix Wear – Leather FastFit Mechanic Gloves
Real leather makes these work gloves feel luxurious and tough even when you’re putting in serious work in the shop.
- Full leather palm and fingertips
- Trigger finger reinforced
- Machine washable
- Not oil resistant
These work gloves are excellent for working with wood or with metal parts that will hurt your hands. You won’t struggle with operating standard tools thanks to the thin leather around the fingertips. But, you may want to be wary when you wear these gloves around engine parts or oils.
The leather will protect you from minor scrapes, cuts, and heat or cold hazards. However, when you spill oils onto the glove, they may soak into the leather and stain it. These stains are only cosmetic, but you should still probably find other gloves for working with heavy oils.
#3 – Mechanix Wear – Original Work Gloves
These Mechanix Wear Work Gloves are multifunctional, waterproof, and resistant to chemicals, meaning that they’ll be great for working in the shop or out in the yard.
- Poor protection against mechanical hazards
The best part of these gloves is that they’re breathable on the top. While your palms may get slightly sweaty, the fact that your knuckles are ventilated through the material makes all the difference.
These gloves are waterproof, tightly fitted, and great for performing work that requires a lot of fine motor coordination. You should use caution when you wear these gloves during heavy work, however.
The lightness of the gloves and the breathable top means that they don’t offer much protection from cutting or scraping.
#4 – CLC Custom Leathercraft 125M Handyman Flex Grip Work Gloves
These Custom Leathercraft Handyman Flex Grip Work Gloves are perfect for anyone who works in a shop that gets chilly but who can’t compromise on dexterity.
- Not waterproof
These gloves are great for detail work, especially when you need to avoid getting grease or anything else on your hands. You can throw these gloves into the washer and the dryer without worrying about them shrinking from the heat.
The insulation on these gloves will keep you warm when it’s a little chilly in the shop, but you should be wary about using them like you would use a rubber glove or something similar. The gloves aren’t waterproof, so you may feel yourself get soaked.
#5 – Vgo 3Pairs High Dexterity Heavy Duty Mechanic Glove
These Vgo High Dexterity Heavy Duty Mechanic Gloves live up to their name by providing serious protection from mechanical hazards while impeding dexterity far less than other designs.
- Heavy duty protection
- Attractive aesthetics
- Knuckle guard is cumbersome
The knuckle guard on these gloves will protect you almost as much as the gauntlets of a medieval knight.
The hard plastic will protect you from more trauma than casual scrapes and accidental impacts — you might get away with an accidental hammer strike without being hurt.
The palms are also reinforced which means that you won’t get hurt by handling abrasive materials. But, you’ll still be able to use your cell phone, scanner, or other device while you’re wearing these gloves thanks to their touchscreen-capable fingertips.
The thing to remember is that these gloves are for heavy duty use, so they are more cumbersome than most other gloves, even though they are very flexible for gloves of their type.
#6 – Vgo 3 Pairs High Dexterity Light Duty Mechanic Glove
When you need hyper-light gloves that still offer a bit of protection from the elements, these Vgo gloves are right up your alley.
- Multiple color choices
- Maximum dexterity
- Highly slip resistant
- Cuff doesn’t fully close
It’s hard to beat the flexibility and dexterity provided by these gloves. The protection offered by these gloves is minimal, but it’s enough for many types of mechanical work. The gloves are machine washable, which is a nice extra.
The only feature to criticize on these gloves is their cuff. The cuff can be cinched to close slightly, but it cannot be fully closed. This means that your wrists may be more exposed than you want. If you have small hands, you may find that the gloves are too roomy as a result.
#7 – Work Safety Gloves
When you need a basic but capable pair of mechanic’s gloves, these Work Safety Gloves are a great option.
- Great gripping surface
- Padded knuckles
- Only has protection where you need it the most
- Frays at the seams
- Poor aesthetics
Why bother with a pair of heavy duty work gloves if you only need protection on certain parts of your hand? With these gloves, you’ll get protection on your palm, your knuckles, your fingertips, and your wrist — but not any on the tops of your hands where it isn’t necessary.
These gloves are a bit of an eyesore, however. Also, you may find that the seams which tie the protective padding to the rest of the glove will fray. The fraying is only aesthetic, but it may contribute to these gloves looking battered.
#8 – Mechanix Wear – Original Covert Tactical Gloves
Don’t let these Mechanix Wear’s Tactical aesthetic fool you. These gloves are ready to protect you from a galaxy of hazards.
- Good top-of-hand protection
- Firm wrist buckle clasp
- Reinforced index finger
- Big wrist buckle may be uncomfortable
When you need a combination of protection from chemical, mechanical, and temperature hazards, these gloves have a bit of everything to offer. Furthermore, your hands will stay at the right temperature the whole time.
The only issue you may encounter is that the wrist buckle is large and somewhat cumbersome compared to other mechanic’s gloves. For most people, there won’t be any problem, but if you wear a long sleeve it may be mildly annoying.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which features should I look for in a mechanic’s glove?
When you’re in the market for a mechanic’s glove, you should keep your eyes out for the following features:
- Hazard protection
- Ease of cleaning
Hazard protection should be your primary concern when selecting a mechanic’s glove because the only reason you’re wearing them is to protect your hands from the hazards of the garage.
But you’ll need to pick the glove that protects you from the hazards that you will face the most frequently while you are working. Not all hazards warrant a heavy duty glove. In fact, you should try to walk the line between sufficient protection for your most-common hazard and dexterity.
Dexterity is critical because because it helps you avoid needing hazard protection in the first place. The more easily that you can manipulate the objects in your shop, the less likely you are to drop them or fumble them in a dangerous way.
More importantly, your dexterity while working with mechanic’s gloves can add a lot of headaches or help you to work more efficiently. The more dexterity you have with your gloves, the more likely you are to get jobs done without any mishaps.
Comfort is important because you’ll be wearing your gloves for long periods each day. If the gloves have uncomfortable features which scrape against your skin or your clothes, you will notice it.
Likewise, if your gloves aren’t breathable and you work vigorously, you’ll find that your hands are a sweaty mess when it comes time to take a break for lunch. So, breathability is a key concern as it relates to a glove’s comfort level.
Durability is a major factor because you will put your gloves through a lot of stress every time you use them. If your gloves aren’t durable against the hazards you’re facing them against, you’ll find that they fray and fall apart, leaving you unprotected.
Durability is often connected to the comfort of the glove. Frayed parts make the glove less comfortable.
Ease of cleaning is a minor feature that you should use to discriminate between glove options that you generally enjoy. Many gloves are machine washable, but many aren’t.
Remember that being machine washable and being machine dryable are two completely different features which do not necessarily always occur in the same glove.
What material should my mechanic’s glove be made from?
The material that your gloves are made from is critical because it determines many of the glove’s other features like its durability, hazard protection, and ease of cleaning.
There are a few choices for mechanic’s glove materials:
- Animal skin
- Synthetic materials
Animal skins like leathers or goatskins are effective materials for mechanic’s gloves. They can provide a measure of mechanical protection and also a high degree of comfort.
The only issues with animal skins is that they are easy to stain with oils or other chemical hazards and that they are not breathable.
Synthetics are the most common material for mechanic’s gloves because they are lightweight, durable, and protective against most hazards. Likewise, they are easy to clean and can be highly breathable most of the time.
Rubber is a less common material for mechanic’s gloves that is more likely to be present in older models. Rubber isn’t breathable, it isn’t durable, but it is protective against chemical hazards. So, you should probably avoid rubber-based mechanic’s gloves.
Mixed material gloves are among the most common mechanic’s gloves because mixing the properties of the above materials is the best way to take advantage of their benefits while minimizing their drawbacks.
Mixes of animal skins and synthetics are the best option for most people because it can combine comfort with high durability and ease of cleaning. However, the points of the glove where the materials are stitched together are often the weakest points of the glove.
What hazards should I be most concerned about?
- Hazards can be divided into a few categories:
Mechanical hazards are the most ubiquitous because there’s always a chance that you’ll scrape or cut your hand while handling parts in the shop. Thankfully, they’re also the easiest hazards to guard against by wearing gloves.
The more serious the mechanical hazard you’ll face, the heavier glove you’ll need.
Chemical hazards are less common, but equally dangerous. Oils, abrasive chemicals, and soaps can hurt your unprotected hands. Chemical hazards are also more difficult to protect against. What’s more, chemicals can damage your gloves very easily.
Thermal hazards are hazards which can burn or freeze your hands. Most of the time, you’ll be more worried about thermal hazards from hot parts than you will be worried about parts which are too cold to handle.
Thermal hazards are very easy to handle when you wear a pair of mechanic’s gloves.
How do I clean my mechanic’s gloves?
Cleaning your mechanic’s gloves is easy if they are machine washable because you can throw them into the washer without worrying about any consequences. You might be able to get away with machine washing them even if the gloves are not listed as having the feature.
For gloves which aren’t machine washable, you should follow a basic cleaning protocol much like you’d do with other pieces of work hardware like your boots.
First, brush any large pieces of debris off of your gloves. Then, wash them under the tap with cold water and dish soap. Scrub gently with a sponge or a brush.
You should only clean the outside of the glove with this technique, as it may take a very long time for the inside to dry out if you clean it.
You don’t need to let your gloves fully dry before using them again. Most gloves will take a long time to dry unless you throw them into a drier. Make sure that your gloves can handle machine drying without shrinking before throwing them in.
If you have leather embedded in your glove, you may find that the leather darkens when it is wet. Don’t be alarmed; the color will change back when it is dry.
Now that you’re acquainted with the best mechanic’s gloves and the features that you should look for when you’re in the market for a pair, it’s time to make your choice.
Remember to consider the hazards that you’ll face as well as your ability to clean the gloves frequently.
Don’t be afraid to purchase multiple pairs of gloves if you have different niches in which you need to perform work in the shop.
There are many gloves which claim to do it all, but most people will be better served by having several different pairs of gloves which they switch between depending on the day.