How do you choose the best gardening gloves? They come in a wide range of styles, materials, and price points, each intended for different uses. With so many options to choose from in gardening gloves, it’s sometimes hard to know which type to buy. Gardening gloves are essential for those who garden frequently, whether as a hobby or in a professional capacity. A good pair of gloves not only protects your hands from the soil, but also from injury due to repeated use of tools or from the plants themselves.

Type of Gloves

Leather gloves are perfect for heavier work, especially when you’ll use tools that have the possibility to injure you. You should also use leather gloves when working with plants that might otherwise tear or poke your gloves with their thorns or when participating in heavier tasks, such as moving rocks. If you morally object to leather or you find leather gloves too expensive, there are many synthetic leather options.

Cotton gloves can be used year-round, but they are particularly great during warm summer months. They are also ideal for use with tools or plants that won’t tear at your hands if you mishandle them.

Rubber gloves are not generally used for most gardening tasks, but they are very handy for cleaning up waste or debris around plants. They can also help you get a good grip on some tools, giving you more dexterity when working in your garden. They are also helpful for tasks that include working with wet leaves and mixing or using pesticide and fungicide.

Waterproof gloves that are not made of rubber can be crafted out of a variety of materials. Often, they are made of a fabric similar to knit and then dipped in a chemical or coating to make them waterproof. They are typically incredibly flexible and also allow for an easier time with wet garden tasks. 

Traditional garden gloves – These are the gardening gloves you will find in all garden center’s and are usually made from a waterproof material, with the fingers and palms covered in rubber. These gloves are great for general tasks, such as weeding, potting, and planting.

According to use

  • Light gardening tasks – Cotton gloves are most suited for tasks, such as mowing the lawn and using a strimmer.
  • Heavy gardening tasks – Choose leather gloves for tasks, such as moving rocks or handling tools, which could easily pierce other types of gloves.
  • Wet gardening tasks – If the soil is wet, you are moving a pile of wet leaves, or mixing and using pesticide or fungicide, the gloves which offer the best protection are rubber gloves.
  • General gardening tasks – For smaller tasks, such as weeding and planting, the best gloves to use are the traditional multipurpose gardening gloves.

Balance of Comfort and Durability

If your gardening gloves aren’t comfortable, you’re unlikely to wear them. But the most comfortable gloves are often the least durable.

Cotton gloves offer softness but not much protection, while all-leather gloves prevent nicks and cuts but aren’t best for breathing and maneuverability. A happy medium is gloves that are durable, yet pliable, that protect hands while still letting you maneuver.

Look for a snug, comfortable fit around the wrist to help keep debris out. If you plan to do any digging or weeding, avoid gloves that don’t have either a hook-and-loop or elastic wrist closure.

Gloves intended for more rugged work often have padding strategically placed in the palms and fingers, as well as on the knuckles to protect them from getting bashed. A little bit of padding is a good thing – too much can make it difficult to close your hand or bend your fingers.

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