Woolen hat….. Check!
Sweater and jacket…… Check!
Scarf ………… Check!
Socks and boots …….. Check!
….. and how about your gloves?
Winter is right at your doorstep. Whether you are taking a quick stroll around the neighborhood or driving towards work, it’s imperative to keep yourself warm and comfortable at all times.
If you think that it’s a whole lot warmer inside your car, you’re wrong.
After being exposed to extreme cold, your car transforms into an icebox with seat belts. And your gloves are the only ones that can keep your hands cozy behind the wheel.If you still find yourself confused over thousands of possible choices, feel free to indulge yourself with the most functional and dependable driving gloves in the market today.
My Top Picks for Driving Gloves!
Feeling cold already? Check out our top picks!
Wanna learn more? Keep on reading.
What Are Driving Gloves?
Driving Gloves are a special type of clothing designed to give our hands protection and convenience behind the wheel. They are often made of thin soft leather that offers both durability and flexibility to make the driving gloves as functional as possible.
Driving gloves have long been a fashion staple among drivers. Whether you are a professional race car driver or just like anyone else who spends a significant amount of time in the city streets every single day, driving gloves are considered an integral component of your overall getup. Furthermore, the gloves are meant for various purposes apart from making you look good as you roll.
Watch this video on a very sexy pair of driving gloves that I just couldn't resist showing you:
Did you know...?
Driving gloves came into light right after the very first automobiles were introduced to the public. Compared to the cars of today’s time, vehicles way back in the 1890s didn’t offer enough protection to its drivers and passengers from extreme weather elements.
Early automobiles weren’t equipped with a solid roofing system which is critical in ensuring indoor heating. Because of these, drivers wore hats, goggles, and driving gloves to keep them comfortably warm while driving.
Did you also know that the compartment located in the dashboard is called a glove box? This simply means that gloves have long been a part of car driving. Since its introduction in the world of automobiles, driving gloves have evolved for a number of times to meet the changing challenges. Through time, the gloves were designed to be more lightweight while offering a snug fit comfort.
Lined vs Unlined Gloves
Are you a little confused as to whether or not to go for lined driving gloves? In order to come up with a reasonable decision, it’s best to have a better understanding on the differences between lined and unlined gloves.
Lined gloves are those geared with an extra layer of material from the inside. The main purpose of having that added layer is to provide more warmth and comfort.
Lined driving gloves are a practical solution during cold weather. Some of the most common materials used as lining for driving gloves are Cashmere, Wool, Shearling, Fleece, and Alpaca.
On the other hand, the unlined gloves are the tight fitting version. They are typically the most preferred type of driving gloves come fall and spring. A lot of drivers prefer to use unlined driving gloves they tend to get a better feel on the steering wheel giving them more control. And since the unlined driving gloves fit tightly to the fingers, they render a more refined and elegant look.
Driving gloves now come in a variety of colors. But if you really want to look cool and crisp with your gloves, it is best to opt for black and brown shades.
Whether you like it or not, most if not all of us men share a common taste for color in our outdoor dress codes – blue, brown, grey, and black. So in order to be safe, it’s best that you choose brown and black for your driving gloves. Such colors will either complement or deliver a stylish contrast to your day to day attire.
But if you really want to project an even stronger impression, going for brighter colors is a good choice. The best colors are bright red or light blue.
Machine Sewn vs Hand Sewn
Driving gloves also differ on how they’re made – handsewn and machine sewn. But which is better?
Handsewn driving gloves are the more complex type. As the name implies, they are manually sewn with a contrast thread. Therefore, handsewn driving gloves are costlier and require more time to make. The threads also tend to break more easily compared to those that are machine sewn. When worn, these gloves tend to feel a bit bulkier compared to machine sewn. The good side about hand sewn is that they are often made of high quality leather and that they bear great craftsmanship. They are mostly used as a good match for casual attire.
Machine sewn driving gloves have better and more accurate stitching. They have been sewn from the inside which makes them look smoother and more refined. Because of their uniform and refined stitching, machine sewn driving gloves are more applicable for more formal occasions and goes perfectly with dress suits. And since they are easier and faster to make, these gloves are usually offered at cheaper prices.
What To Look For in Driving Gloves
Shopping for driving gloves online can be a very challenging task. There’s practically a seemingly endless line of choices and you only get to see the pictures and read the details of each product before you make the final purchasing decision. Here are some critical factors that you must consider in order to help you ease out on the task:
- Good fit. First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure that the driving gloves you are about to buy will perfectly with your hands. Securing a good fit is essential because this help you get a good and comfortable grip on the steering wheel. Sizes of driving gloves are basically based on the height and width of the hand. The height is measured from the tip of the index finger down to the base of the palm. The width on the other hand, refers to the entire circumference of the widest portion of the hand.
- Formal or casual. Not all driving gloves are the same. As discussed earlier, there are driving gloves that are better suited with casual attire while there are also some others that are better off with a dress suit. Ideally, you should own both so that you’ll have a pair that you can count on for any occasion.
- Closure system. Driving gloves are equipped with different types of closure system. These are placed in order to provide a comfortable and secured fit in order to prevent the gloves from moving around and falling out of place. Choose a closure system that best appeals to your preferences.
Importance of Driving Gloves
Driving gloves are a lot more than just a fashion accessory. Apart from making you look good behind the steering wheel, these gloves play other critical roles in your everyday drive.
Steering wheel covers are typically made of leather. Wearing driving gloves help you gain a better grip and control over the wheel. Whether you are a car racing buff or a professional driver wherein driving has become a normal part of your daily life, driving gloves are an essential tool you mustn’t go without.
Wearing driving gloves also helps preserve the original beauty of your steering wheel. Your hands can be all sweaty and may carry some dirt as well as oil that may slowly but surely inflict damage on your steering wheel. With the help of driving gloves, you are able to protect the surface of your steering wheel from such harmful elements.
Driving gloves, especially the lined ones make sure that your hands are warm and comfortable at all times. If you are driving more than two hours a day, using driving gloves can significantly reduce hand fatigue while helping you perform better and drive longer.
Now that I've covered some of the basics, let's get into some of my favorite products.
This pair of lined driving gloves is everything you could ever need on your long cold drive from home straight to a formal evening affair. You can choose cashmere, wool, or fleece for a lining and still enjoy awesome precision using your tablet or smartphone while wearing it. It comes with an elegant logo button at the base and geared with a non-slip design to make sure that it stays in place all the time.
If you are looking for something that offers better grip and control, these traditional driving gloves by Pratt and Hart might be an ideal choice. They are unlined so they don’t feel chunky at all when driving. They are designed with knuckle holes for breathability and style.
Another reliable partner for colder weather, Harrms Nappa Leather Gloves are designed to help you operate your touchscreen gadgets with ease while keeping your hands warm and comfy. It comes with cashmere lining and the outer section is made of high quality nappa leather.
To those looking for a pair that does serious insulation, then this might be the ideal driving gloves for you. A one of a kind pair, these driving gloves don’t just have one but two layers of lining – fleece and cashmere-wool blend. The gloves look elegant with a button strap fastener and smooth nappa leather for a more refined appeal.
Another good pair to match for your dress suits, this driving glove is as elegant as they are functional. They’re great in keeping your hands warm in cold weather. With these gloves, you can conveniently operate your tablet or phone on the go while driving towards your destination without having to take them off.
All the five pairs listed above are considered the cream of the crop. But if given the chance to choose only a single pair, my best bet would be the Pratt and Hart Traditional Leather Driving Gloves. They’re not quite bad to put on in cold weather and are even better in the warm months. There are unlined and they give me a much better feel and hold of the steering wheel which for me is their main role.
Written by Robert Ordway
Raised in the small mill town of Lake Station, Indiana, Robert’s blue collar upbringing exposed him to little if any of the clothing industry. Robert has been following the menswear industry for over a decade and has been significantly influenced by the book, Dressing the Man by Alan Flusser. From 2009-2012, he worked in retail sales at both Brooks Brothers and JCrew. In 2015, Robert received the Custom Clothier certification from the Custom Tailor and Designers Association (CTDA), the oldest continuously operating trade organization in the United States. He is the former owner of Rusted Oak, a men’s retail clothing store in Valparaiso, Indiana. Today, Robert's mission is to teach men of all shapes and sizes about grooming care, general life style tips, and of course male fashion stemming from his deep career in the fashion industry.