How to choose motorcycle gloves ​

Home Our Products Motorcycle Protection Motorcycle Gloves > How to choose motorcycle gloves ​

Gloves are essential for a good riding experience out on your bike. You want to keep your hands safe from whatever the road or weather has to throw at you. Keeping your hands warm, dry and protected is essential when riding your motorcycle, as you need them to properly steer, brake, and accelerate. Poor grip or hands that are cold or wet could become a serious safety risk while riding. You also need to consider that in the event of a crash or fall, your hands could be first in the firing line, so appropriate protection for your hands is key. 

Protecting your hands with motorcycle gloves that are CE/UKCA certified is important. With so many choices, it can be difficult to find the best one to suit you, which is why we have created a guide to help you find the perfect match. 

What are the benefits of motorcycle gloves?

As with gloves you might wear for cold weather, gardening, or other physical work, motorcycle gloves are there to protect your hands against specific risks. They help keep your hands warm and dry, as well as protected against road debris (such as twigs, rocks, dust or grit), and safer in the event of a crash or fall. Added grip on the palms also helps to control your motorcycle, as you’re less likely to accidentally yank on the throttle if your hands are slipping. 

One of the main differences between ordinary gloves and motorcycle gloves is the inclusion of impact protection. D3O® impact protection in motorcycle gloves can be included on the knuckles, palms or back of hand area. In a fall or crash, your hands are likely to take some of the impact. Whether you go headfirst over the handlebars or wobble off your bike at low speed, the instinct is to put your hands out to break your fall. Armored motorcycle gloves will help reduce the impact as a result.

Motorcycle gloves that combine D3O® impact protection with abrasion-resistant fabric and technical features offer the most to riders. A good pair of motorcycle gloves should see you safely through several thousand miles on your rides, and be tough enough to handle the unique challenges of motorcycling (and the precise needs of bikers!). 

How to find the right motorcycle gloves

First and foremost, when looking for the perfect motorcycle gloves, check that they are CE/UKCA certified, which is where the gloves go through a rigorous testing process:

  • Cuff length – This involves measuring the gloves from the wrist line to the end of the cuff. For a glove to pass Level 1 testing it needs to be at least 15mm, and 50mm for Level 2 testing. 
  • Restraint – This tests that the hook and loop fastening is effective and that the glove would remain on your hands if you were in an accident. 
  • Tear strength – Three different sections of the gloves are tested to check if they are resistant to tearing forces – the palm, the cuff and the back of the glove. 
  • Seam strength – A similar test to the tear strength, where a sample of the glove is clamped and then a force is applied as the two jaws are pulled away from each other. The time the seam breaks is then recorded. For the glove to meet the Level 1 requirements, the main seams need to survive 6 Newtons per millimeter and 10 Newtons per millimeter for Level 2. 
  • Impact abrasion resistance – Testing to see how the gloves will hold up if they hit the road. To achieve Level 1 protection, each sample must last at least 3 seconds before holing after they hit the road, and the average can’t be less than 4 seconds. For Level 2, the single time can’t be less than 6 seconds and the average must be at least 8 seconds. 

Some additional key factors to consider are:

  • Riding style – Choose gloves that are suited to the type of riding you do. If you ride in warm or humid conditions, you’ll want to look for lightweight and breathable gloves. Riders who are out in all weather conditions should look for insulation and waterproofing. If your riding discipline involves more high-speed action, such as track racing or motocross, choose gloves that have the highest safety and impact protection levels with abrasion-resistant materials. D3O® knuckle protection passes CE EN 13594:2015 Level 1 or 2 glove standards, depending on the protector used. 
  • Size and fit – As with all of your motorcycle gear, you need to find gloves that are the correct size and fit. Gloves that are too small could restrict the movement of your fingers and hands, too large and you’ll have difficulty holding the handlebars safely. Correctly sized and fitted gloves also mean any impact protection will sit in the right place to offer maximum safety. Try before you buy, or use brands’ size guides to find the right fit. 
  • Materials – The best motorcycle gloves will use high-quality materials that have added safety features. Leather or reinforced textiles (such as Kevlar woven fabrics) are great options to look for, as well as reinforced stitching on the fingers and silicone grips on the palms. Waterproof, breathable, lightweight or insulating materials are available on a range of gloves so you can find something suitable for any season - you can also look for gloves that are designed to regulate vapor and temperature for an optimal riding experience. Many gloves also feature touchscreen compatibility on the fingers and thumb.
  • Impact protection – Choose gloves that feature D3O® for the best impact protection possible. D3O® knuckle protection is designed to be lightweight and flexible, making it a fantastic choice for motorcycle gloves. Always look for the D3O® protected label and pick motorcycle gloves that feature knuckle protection as a minimum. 
  • Safety rating – As well as your D3O® impact protection, look for a CE or UKCA marking certifying that the gloves have been tested to EN-13594:2015 and meet the safety criteria set out. There should also be a Category 1 or Category 2 mark (sometimes referred to as Level 1 or Level 2). This indicates the level of protection offered. Level 1 is a baseline level, and Level 2 is more advanced, requiring impact protection.

D3O® Protected Motorcycle Gloves 

Partnering with world-leading brands for motorcycle apparel, D3O® impact protection can be found in many glove brands as the ideal choice for rider safety. Discover a selection of products below. 

Furygan Jet All Season D3O®

A glove for all seasons, but especially suited to the autumn and spring, the Furygan Jet All Season features D3O® impact protection and a host of rider-friendly features. D3O® impact protection keeps your knuckles safe in the event of an accident, while a 100% leather palm offers a supple and secure grip on the handlebars. Palm reinforcements safeguard the high-wear areas, and the fingertips feature Furygan’s Sensitive Science insert for touch-screen compatibility. The gloves are secured with an adjustable hook and loop wrist fastening and are available in a range of colors. The Furygan Jet All Season is a great choice for riders looking for a year-round glove that offers excellent impact protection. 

Merlin Ranger D3O® Glove 

For urban riders and classic bikers, the Merlin Ranger D3O® glove offers an understated heritage style without compromising on safety. Featuring D3O® knuckle impact protection, and strategically reinforced palms, these tough do-it-all gloves are a great option for casual riders. The full wrist covering is secured with a hook and loop closure for extra security. With a waxed cotton outer and cowhide leather palm, the gloves also include a waterproof and breathable membrane to keep hands cool and dry in any weather. Flexible D3O® knuckle protection works well with soft cotton and leather materials, creating a comfortable glove to see you through all sorts of adventures. 

ICON Airform

Sleek, lightweight and with plenty of technical features, the ICON Airform glove is a great choice for summer riding. The D3O® knuckle insert offers fantastic impact protection and range of movement without making the glove bulky or stiff. The Ax Suede palm and Ax Laredo back work together to provide breathable comfort, grip, abrasion resistance and temperature control. The back of the glove features perforations for airflow, while the palm is reinforced in high-wear areas for maximum lifespan. For riders looking for lightweight summer gloves without compromising on impact protection, the ICON Airform is an ideal option.

Richa Hypercane GTX 

For bikers looking for the ultimate glove that combines impact protection, technical features and all-weather riding, you can’t go wrong with the Richa Hypercane GTX. This next-level glove includes D3O® knuckle protection, plus D3O® palm protection for added safety. Abrasion-resistant materials including leather, goatskin and stretch textile combine to create a glove that is safe and comfortable to wear all day. Gore-Tex waterproofing ensures hands stay dry, and combined with Gore Grip, the gloves stay secure even in wet weather. The absolute must-have glove for riders looking for something to see them through every season and any weather with the best in impact protection. 

Discover more D3O partner brands offering the best in impact protection, comfort and style when it comes to motorcycle gloves today: