6 Of The Best Summer Motorcycle Gloves (2020 Edition)


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Last Updated: 21st August 2020

Walk into any motorcycle accessory shop and among the vast displays of boots, helmets and clothing you will probably see a wall of gloves.

With hundreds of pairs and so much choice, it can quickly get overwhelming.

So, to help you decide, we created this buyers guide. 

Firstly, we take look at what you need to consider when buying a pair of summer gloves.

And secondly we review some budget level gloves and give you the lowdown on what to expect from them.

Click here to go straight to the reviews.

If you are looking for warmer gloves check out our winter glove buying guide

Top Summer Glove

Knox Orsa gloves

Knox Orsa Leather Gloves MkII

Comfort, Protection, Style

A step up in class from the cheaper options. These gloves offer a great balance between comfort and protection.

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Top Budget Pick

weise summer motorcycle gloves

Weise Street Fight Glove

Affordable quality protection

Light, comfortable and available at a great price point, these Weise gloves are a great entry level purchase.

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Summer Motorcycle Glove Reviews

Lets get into our top choices


Knox Orsa Leather Gloves MkII

Top All Rounder

Knox Orsa gloves

Coming in highly rated the Knox Orsa’s are a quality summer glove combining great venting and breathability with top class protection.

The styling is ‘in your face’ and strongly inspired by motocross, these gloves are definitely not flying under the radar!

As with all Knox products, the armour reinforcement is top notch, with protection to all the key areas – knuckles, palm and scaphoid.

In terms of fit we love the ratchet tightener on the wrist – dialing it in is a doddle. Also a special mention for the leather which is beautifully soft and supple, the gloves easily flex at the fingers and ‘bed in’ nicely after a couple of rides.  

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Pros

plus iconHigh quality leather

plus iconHard armour – scaphoid, knuckles, fingers

plus iconVented and breathable materials

plus iconBoa closure system

Cons

minus iconSizing is on the small size, may need to size up

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Weise Street Fight Glove

Top Budget Pick

weise summer motorcycle gloves

If you’re shopping for a pair of sporty looking summer gloves that give comfort and protection then the Weise Street Fight Motorcycle Gloves are a good buy.

These short cuffed gloves are equipped with many features including ventilated PU knuckle armour and tough durable leather perforated around the fingers allowing your hands to breathe during hot weather.

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Pros

plus iconFull grain leather

plus iconTPU shell armour

plus iconTwin layered leather to impact points

plus iconStretch panels to top of hand and fingers to aid fit and flexibility

plus iconChamude overlay panel to palm for improved grip

plus iconAdjustable Velcro retained strap to wrist

Cons

minus iconStitching could be stronger in places

minus iconSomewhat cumbersome knuckle protector

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Weise Vagos Glove

Mid Range Pick

Weise vagos gloves

These are a great mid range option with that reassuring Weise quality to back them up.

They are relatively cheap yet functional gloves. The quality seems fine with decent leather, stitching and fasteners.

Whilst the protection offered is not best in class, it offers a decent compromise at this price point.

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Pros

plus iconHard armour to knuckles and fingers

plus iconSoft and supple leather

plus iconPalm panel for enhanced grip

plus iconHook and loop wrist strap

Cons

minus iconNot the best for protection

minus iconMay need to size up

minus iconPoor ventilation can result in sweaty hands

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Richa Rock Glove

Most Comfortable

Richa Rock Glove

A short cut glove made of very supple leather, these gloves are extremely comfortable with a great fit.

You also get a decent amount of armour for the price, with hard armour to the knuckles and protection for the fingers and scaphoid.

Check Prices on SportsBikeShop

Pros

plus iconSupple leather for a great fit

plus iconImpressive armour for the price

plus iconKnuckle, finger and scaphoid protection

plus iconShowerproof, ideal for UK summers

Cons

minus iconVenting is not great

minus iconVelcro fastener can be fiddly

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Alpinestars Celer Glove 

Great Protection

Alpine stars celer gloves

The Celar Glove oozes with the Alpinestar hallmark style and quality.

Crammed into this short cuffed glove is an armoury of protection combining hard PU armour to the knuckes and soft armour to the fingers.

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Pros

plus iconGoat hide outer finish

plus iconEVA foam inserts on impact zones

plus iconFinger sliders on first two digits

plus iconReinforced hand, thumb and palm protection

Cons

minus iconSizing is on the small side – may be worth ordering a size up

minus iconNeed considerable breaking in time

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HAWK Summer Motorbike Gloves

Budget Buy

These black, sporty and stylish looking gloves are technically a short cuffed glove but their base extends further than most designs affording a little extra coverage around the wrists.

Check Prices on Amazon

Pros

plus iconKnuckle and finger protection

plus iconLightweight with Velcro fastening

plus iconAir vents for better air flow

plus iconFull leather construction

Cons

minus iconVery lightweight so only suitable for warm summer riding

minus iconSmall sizing – order one size up

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Buyers Guide

Top considerations before buying.


Protection

ripped motorcycle gloves

It is important for new riders to realize just how much damage and inconvenience can result from inadequate hand protection.

Coming off a motorcycle is likely to make us reach out with our hands and shield ourselves from the worst of the impact.

Hands are delicate; a collection of small bones surrounded with skin. Splayed out it takes very little to break or cut them open when sliding across abrasive road surfaces.

A well-designed glove will allow you both protection and the ability to operate controls. What use would a glove be if its restrictive padding or armour leads to an accident?

Glove designs achieve protection in a number of ways:

  • Palm padding
  • Palm sliders
  • Knuckle protectors
  • Gauntlet style wrist protection
  • Kevlar, carbon fibre or plastic re-enforcement
  • Double-stitching and multiple layering

Palm padding puts extra distance between the cheese-grating road surface and the soft skin of your palms.

An accident might still destroy your gloves but the job of preserving your skin will be done.

The addition of palm sliders, often incorporated as tough plastic studs, can turn a potentially abrasive impact into a harmless soft slide leaving no more than minor scratches to the glove.

Hand x-rayRiders may ask why they would need knuckle protection when the more likely area of impact is the palm and the flat of the hand. Birds, insects, flying stones and wing mirror collisions can all leave a nasty sting across the knuckles; an area of complex bone structure.

With knuckle protection you’re also more likely to come away on the winning side in the event of unexpected road-rage!

Gauntlets offer more protection around the wrist area than short gloves but some riders may find them hot in the summer months.

Short gloves with the additional airflow will give you a cooler ride and are usually cheaper than gauntlets.

Summer gloves offer less protection than winter gloves. They are lighter and thinner often lacking the protective accessories of their cold-weather counterparts.

Weather

Even in the summer we may experience an unexpected downpour or a change in temperature.

It is also important that our hands receive a nice steady air-flow to prevent them from sweating and becoming slippery. With throttles and levers to operate the last thing we want is a loss of control.

Modern glove designs often incorporate perforations allowing for an air flow around the hands while riding.

Do they fit?

Quite simply… try them on, but when you do consider a number of factors.

  • Leather gloves are not always waterproof unless aided by additional material but they do stretch over time by around 5%.
  • Man-made textures largely remain fixed, they don’t wear or ‘break in’.
  • Tight-fitting gloves will restrict blood flow and lead to numbness and a possible loss of feel and control.
  • Excessively large gloves may cause your hands to move around and also lose control of the bike. 

Most gloves come as either ‘gauntlet’ style or short fit.

Either way they should both have effective zips or Velcro fasteners to keep them in place.

Sizes may differ depending on whether they’re UK, US or European made so make sure you know your true hand size.

This video shows how to accurately measure your hand when sizing up for gloves:

Price

Fortunately there’s a wide selection of gloves to suit all budgets.

Leather is more expensive than textile but generally lasts longer.

Higher prices often reflect quality material and stitching and fasteners.

The extent and type of built-in protective armour will also affect the price whether its carbon fibre, Kevlar, plastic or cell-foam padding.

Function

A good idea when trying on motorcycle gloves is to grab hold of the handlebars of your bike or at least one in the show room. Failing that, just improvise with something like a pole to see how the glove sits in the riding position.

I once tried on a pair with so much padding and carbon fibre armour that I could barely grip my handlebars.

Make sure that the glove fits comfortably and allows you to handle your bike and perform tasks such as operating the indicator button, horn, brake and clutch control levers.

Some gloves incorporate finger-wipes for the visor and also fingers with touch-screen capability.

Style

Gloves on motorbike speedoOnce you’ve assessed gloves for function, weather and protection then let’s not forget how they look.

Most riders love a really stylish pair of new motorcycle gloves especially ones that make them look like a Super Hero (well maybe!).

Perhaps you prefer something that matches the rest of your clothing and the bike itself.

There’s another advantage to having matching and fashionable gear; if you look more serious and deliberate projecting an image of experience and mastery then perhaps you’ll be inspired to ride that way too.

Regardless, like all other selections of motorcycling attire you probably won’t be at a loss for choices in fashion.

Conclusion

If I was only buying a pair of gloves to keep my hands warm while commuting to work on trains and buses then I would be happy saving a few pounds on a cheaper pair. 

Tripping over in the high street or falling down an escalator in the rush hour is unlikely to destroy your hands.

Coming of a bike at speed with inadequate protection… will.

Given the enormous cost and inconvenience of a serious hand injury I would go straight to the top and choose the Alpinestar for its high-quality protection properties.

Instead of comparing the price to other gloves, compare it to other items of protection like helmets and jackets or even parts of your bike. 

So, wear not just your new gloves but two caps when buying them; one for choosing functionality and style and the other for evaluating the glove’s protective characteristics.

Safe and happy riding to all.