Fingerless summer cycling gloves or mitts will help protect the skin on your hands in the event of a crash, and make gripping your bars easier when you’re hot and sweaty.
A good pair of mitts will be made from fabrics breathable enough to stop sweat building up, while also offering comfort in the form of carefully placed padding.
You can pay a lot for mitts from a ‘premium’ brand but there are some excellent, affordable options on the market, with retail prices starting at less than £20 / $50.
We tested six pairs of mitts to find the best summer cycling gloves for 2020.
Best summer cycling gloves for 2020
These mitts all scored four stars or more out of five:
Giro Strade Dure Supergel: £37 / $45 / AU$60
Altura Airstream Mitt: £18
Stolen Goat Blackbeard: £20 / $48
Endura FS260 Pro Aerogel: £35 / $45
Giro Strade Dure Supergel
Giro Strade Dure Supergel gloves. David Caudery/Immediate Media
If you prefer loads of padding on your mitts, then these are great. They have thick Dual Layer Technogel with Rebound Foam pads at the base of the palm and inner thumb, as well as across the synthetic suede palm tops. Finger tabs help with taking them off, while the Velcro at the back keeps them secure.
Supremely comfortable, albeit somewhat expensive.
Altura Airstream Mitts
Altura Airstream Mitts. David Caudery/Immediate Media
The Altura Airstream Mitts feature good, but not excessive, padding on the palm and the heel of the thumb – complete with memory foam – while breathable, wicking, perforated palm panels combine to offer decent grip and comfort.
There’s also a large microfibre sweat wipe, handy finger pull tabs and, best of all, a price that you won’t baulk at.
Stolen Goat Blackbeard
Stolen Goat gloves. David Caudery/Immediate Media
Arrrghh! Unleash your inner pirate with Stolen Goat’s Velcro-free ‘Blackbeard’ mitts (one of a whopping 22 designs).
These snug-fitting microfibre and cotton mitts have pull tabs under the two middle fingers and pretty plush padding across the palms. Well-placed seams and padding offer great comfort, although the ‘sweat wipe’ is pretty small.
Endura FS260 Pro Aerogel
Endura FS260 Pro Aerogel fingerless gloves. David Caudery/Immediate Media
There’s good grip from the rubbery silicone palms, which have thick vented gel pads on the lower palm and a thinner strip at the top on these longstanding mitts.
They have the largest Velcro straps out of the mitts on test here, Terry wipes the length of the thumb and lightweight wicking backs. Finger tabs round out a fine package.
Northwave Flag 2
Northwave Flag 2 mitts. David Caudery/Immediate Media
Lightweight, well-vented mitts – thanks to a perforated synthetic leather palm – with plenty of padding across the lower palm and less across the tops.
Finger tabs help with getting them off and they were comfortable when riding on the tops, though you can feel the slightly prominent seam on the inside of the thumb when riding on the hoods. A good-sized sweat wipe.
Castelli Rosso Corsa Cabrio
Castelli Rosso Corsa Cabrio mitts. David Caudery/Immediate Media
‘The lightest and most aerodynamic gloves possible’… Castelli’s boffins achieved that by dispensing with the thumb and sweat wipe and having a large back cut-out.
At 25g per pair these are astonishingly light. Impressively, they include large patches of CDS (Castelli Damping System) padding across the palm. Comfortable, light and aero. But no thumbs?!