Best Kids Ski Gloves
Nothing can put any child off of skiing faster than having the wrong gear, everything from not having the right helmet and boots for comfort and protection to the right gloves to keep their hands warm and in control. But what exactly makes a great ski glove for kids?
The obvious answer is warmth. While cold-numbed fingers are uncomfortable enough for an adult, this can very quickly put your child off skiing. But this is just the start to determining the best glove for him or her. The style of mittens or gloves as well as the degree of water resistance will both factor into the overall comfort of the gloves.
Choosing mittens or gloves is something of a personal thing. The theory is that, because they keep all fingers together, mittens are warmer, and for younger children they are easier to put on. However, gloves offer the benefit off allowing increased dexterity that may help as children learn to ski. Mittens also can cause the hand to perspire, and remember — moisture is bad. For most skiers who are using poles, which often starts around age 8-10, gloves are usually the answer. For those of you looking for our adult ski glove recommendations, we did a different piece on that here.
What to Look for in Ski or Snowboard Gloves
We are going to focus on gloves in this piece — we prefer them over mittens. Keeping hands warm is essential, and there are two ways gloves achieve this, either through synthetic insulation, or by using down.
Down is natural, an exceptional insulator and very light. It is also more durable than synthetic alternatives, so although down gloves tend to be more expensive, they will last significantly longer. Synthetic insulation does have its own benefits, however. It continues to insulated even when wet, which is not possible with down. Once down gets wet, is stops insulating. Synthetic insulators do weight a little more, but they also dry out much faster than down alternatives. Given these pros and cons to both, think about where your children will be skiing, and how important the ability to do so if their gloves or mittens are wet before making this important choice.
Once you’ve narrowed down your choice of gloves made by reputable manufacturers with adequate insulation, next there are two key features that will determine the comfort of any glove – breathability and their degree of water resistance. From Gore-Tex to Omni-Tech, there are numerous modern materials that provide high degrees of waterproof protection while maintaining a breathability that allows sweat to escape, and these are especially essential for down insulated gloves. An aspect of water resistance that is often ignored is the retention systems. The easiest way for snow to enter any glove is through wrist opening. Ensuring gloves have adequate protection there to prevent water accumulating inside is also crucial for your child’s comfort.
The last aspect to consider is size. Having gloves that do not fit properly can make skiing itself more difficult, exactly the wrong thing you want for children just beginning to learning, so look for gloves available in a variety of sizes to ensure they fit your child properly. With all that in mind, below are some of the best children’s ski gloves available currently. If you have more than one child, you can obviously start a bin of used gloves that you other kids will eventually grow into, allowing you to get more than one season out of a pair of quality gloves.
Recommended Kids Ski and Snowboard Gloves
Hestra Ski Junior Gloves. These are the most expensive kids’ gloves on the market, but with good reason: They are also the best. We have been using them on our own avid-skiing children for years, and they provide a season’s worth of performance and comfort. The Hestra’s use a Goat Nappa Army Leather exterior for protection and a firm grip on the poles. The removable Bemberg liner keeps hands amazingly warm, while the special ‘snow lock’ seal at the wrist keeps snow out and your child’s hands warm and dry. Available in a choice of three colors, Black, Navy and a strikingly fun Pink, they offer the warmth and protection of the very best adult gloves, but in a range of sizes to fit your child. They come at a price, but nothing does the job better. Find here.
Dakine Wristguard Junior Gloves. These excellent gloves have removable wrist braces to protect a child’s wrists during any mishaps. Wrist injuries are the most common sustained when learning to ski, and that added protection can boost confidence. Synthetic insulation keeps everything warm, while a DK Dry waterproof insert keep little hands dry as well. They work just as well with or without the wrist guards, and feature a fantastic cuff fastening that keeps the snow out. Synthetic outers with a polyurethane palm for grip, ensure these gloves are durable. Featuring a smart black finish they will look great with any outfit.
A wide choice of sizes ensures a good fit and at half the cost of the Hestra, they are a decent value as well. You can find them here.
Burton Vent Gloves. These two-way gloves feature a hand warmer pocket that also doubles as a vent, so whatever the weather, your child’s hands will be as toasty or cool as they need to be. With a waterproof membrane inside, your child’s hands will always be dry. The microfiber inner lining is soft to the touch and very comfortable for long stretches on the slopes, while the synthetic insulation keeps everything warm when needed.
The Ultrashell fabric outer provides hard wearing protection, and a toughgrip PU palm ensures there is plenty of grip for poles as required. Finally, the eye-catching design will stand out from the crowd, providing a unique look that everyone will love. Find them here.
Write Your Child’s Name on the Gloves!
Once you buy the gloves, get over the fact that they are brand new and look perfect…. just go ahead and write your child’s name on them! It is best to write the name with a sharpie on both the wrist cuff, as well as the inside tags. Your child will most definitely lose the gloves — on a gondola, a bus, at the table while having lunch. If you invest in the high-quality gloves that we recommend, you need to be sure that you can get them back if (or maybe when) your child misplaces them.
No doubt, skiing can be an expensive sport. Investing in good gloves is part of that expense — but skimp, and you may find that saving a few bucks was not worth the sub-optimal performance and lack of comfort. A happy kid on the slopes is a child who will enjoy skiing more, and staying warm is a big part of that.