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Ahead of the Curve Rider's Blog, Gear & Cycling Tips for Riders

Choosing Leather Motorcycle Gloves: Which Leather is Best?

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Feb 26, 2014 12:36:00 AM

black_l_glove_hand_on_throttle

When people hear that we make motorcycle gloves (for almost 75 years!) we get asked 1 question a lot ...

Which leather is best for gloves? 

Apologies in advance to Bambi and friends ... but when it comes to protecting our paws at 65+ mph motorcyclists have been wearing leather since the beginning ... for good reason.

Leather Motorcycle Gloves

First we'll tell you what you already know:  leather is a great material for motorcycle gloves. It protects hands from the elements, as well as from the road and its hazards.

Nothing feels like it, or protects like it.

We all have our favorites ... the pair that fits perfectly, gets better with age, and keeps us comfortably protected, mile after mile.

If your leather gloves are comfortable and serve you well, it really doesn't matter what critter they're made from ... how they feel on your hands and how they wear is what matters most.

But if you are are curious about what kind of leather is best, or are shopping for leather gloves -- this post is for YOU.

Best Leather for Gloves?

We’d like to give a simple answer. But in truth, the answer is “it depends”.

Here is a review of the best leather choices for motorcycle gloves:

Deerskin: Who wouldn’t want deerskin leather gloves? Deerskin is strong, but also extremely soft to the touch, and conforms nicely to the contours of the hand.

The soft suppleness of deerskin pleases the senses.  We love it, and you propably will, too.  Especially spring thru fall (even winter with a liner). Comfortable, yes.  Weatherproof ... not so much.  There are better choices for that.

PS - here’s an interesting fact: the American White Tailed deer is judged the best quality skin of all deer species in the world!  So when shopping for deerskin gloves, you may want to look for those made from white tail deerskin.

Kangaroo: Perhaps Kangaroo leather should be considered – if you can find it! It has everything going for it: a supple, thin, and highly protective leather, as well as easy to clean and care for. It is so desireable, many professional racers wear this as full suit leathers! But alas, "Joey" is less common, and more expensive, than other, more popular choices.

Sheepskin: Sheepskin is regarded among the best glove leathers, but it will not be found as often in motorcycle gloves. That’s because sheepskin leather is roughly half the thickness of cowhide or deerskin, which makes it less durable and less abrasion-resistant. golf gloves and diplomas, yes ... moto gloves, negatory.

Cowhide: Cowhide is a good choice for nearly every type of motorcycle gear. Glove tanned cowhide offers a great combination of qualities for the price (stretch, softness, smooth finish, and durability). We have our chaps made of it, our leather jackets, boots, gloves.  Much depends on how the hide is processed and what part of the skin is used, and we won't bore you with all those details (but if you want to read more details, you can, here ) -- but glove grade cowhide is especially known for its durability and supple hand. You’ll know good, better, best when you feel it.

Goatskin. You may have owned a pair of goatskin gloves, and no wonder: It’s relatively strong, and a great value. It may be slightly less desirable than cowhide, comparatively – in side-by-side comparisons, it is less soft and grainer, for instance -- but for value and protection, goatskin is a wise choice for the economy minded biker.

Now you know a little bit more about the leather gloves that protect your hands, and why they feel as good as they do.

What about vegan riders and vegan gloves?

We also make 7 different protective gloves that are animal free, for riders who wouldn't hurt a fly (except for the ones that get stuck in their teeth).  (If vegan gloves are your interest, you can learn more about them here).

P.S.  Are Leather Gloves Waterproof? Windproof?

  • There is no glove material more naturally windproof than leather. So, while you can buy windproof gloves (that is to say, gloves made with a special insert designed to be windproof), in lieu of that, your leather gloves should do just fine.

  • It takes more than a leather glove to make a waterproof glove, however.  If you’ve ever gotten caught in a downpour, you know and appreciate the performance of a waterproof leather glove with sealed seams, and a Gore-Tex or other waterproof liner.

  • For How to Care For your leather gloves, go here.

If you have any questions about leather gloves -- caring for them, fitting them, or any other question - leave us a comment!

P.S. We make over 70 styles of gloves, some with free shipping. To learn more about our leather motorcycle glove styles, visit a local dealer or our online store:

     

Topics: leather motorcycle gloves

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