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Whether you’ve been practicing yoga for a few days or a few years, gloves can be a great addition to your yoga workout gear. Wrist support for yoga can be an important factor, and the best yoga gloves help improve your poses while reducing yoga wrist pain.
Yoga gloves are still relatively uncommon. You won’t see them in too many studios or videos, but they offer myriad benefits and you should consider checking them out.
One of their biggest advantages is that you can perform yoga without a mat! Folks who travel frequently will love to hear that news.
What are Yoga Gloves?
Yoga gloves are supportive coverings that provide extra grip, made for both the hands and feet and are designed to be an incredibly snug fit. The gloves are most frequently made of a lightweight, breathable fiber such as cotton or Lycra.
Basic yoga gloves come in different styles. Some cover the fingers, while others just cover the palms and leave the fingers free. Some have a velcro wrist strap, while others just fit snug without needing a strap.
Yoga gloves for the feet, commonly known as yoga socks, are often designed with a cutout for the toes, while others provide more minimal coverage while adding extra grip over the balls of the feet.
Here’s a rundown of our recommendations for the best yoga gloves on the market today.
The Best Yoga Gloves to Try in 2020
Best Padded Yoga Gloves: Yoga Paws ELITE for Your Hands and Feet
If you’re willing to invest a bit more to get a padded glove (and sock!) that you can use without a mat, consider the Yoga Paws ELITE package. Yoga Paws offers yoga gloves for the hands and feet with one-stop shopping. This provides the additional benefit of having an equal amount of traction on both your hands and feet.
At just 5 ounces, they’re lighter than even the lightest travel mats. They also provide 5 mm of built in padding to cushion the wrists and other joints. These thick pads also serve to encourage correct posture throughout your practice.
The Yoga Paws gloves are thoughtfully made and durable, which is why their cost is a bit higher. They’re latex-free and silicon-free, appropriate for both men and women, and come in four neutral colors.Price point: High-end
Best Yoga Gloves for Wrist Support: Wrist Assured Gloves by WAGs Ultra
To get really good wrist support, you’ll have to spend a little more. The very best yoga gloves for wrist support are these WAGs Ultra gloves, which are specially-designed to protect the wrist.
The WAG Ultra gloves contain a patented gel design to relieve both wrist and thumb pain. They help guide your hands and wrists into the correct position. The added warmth provided also helps to increase blood flow to the region, while the grip-padded palm prevents slippage.
These gloves are so strong and durable that they’re appropriate not just for yoga, but also for pilates and weight lifting. It’s awesome that you can make a yoga purchase that can also double as gym gloves as well! Their excellent versatility is why these gloves are worth the cost. Price point: Expensive
Best Nonslip Gloves: ProSource Grippy Gloves
While these Prosource gloves can be used without a mat, they were specifically designed to improve the experience of your yoga practice on the mat. This is important to note because the number one goal in their design is to provide stability without reducing connection to your mat. They feature a nice open-fingered design in order to achieve this.
The grippy dots on the palms go a long way towards helping you maintain those difficult poses for longer periods of time. Non-slip socks and gloves are definitely the way to go!
Besides being perfect yoga gloves for those who have their own mats, the ProSource gloves are also extremely affordable. And they even come in several colors, including pink, purple, aqua, black, and gray. They are one size fits all. Price point: Very affordable
Alternate Wrist Support Choice: CopperJoint Copper Wrist Support and Compression Sleeve
This CopperJoint compression sleeve is not specifically formulated for yoga, and as a multi-use glove, it lacks the grippy, non-skid textured palm of most yoga gloves.
That said, if you’re interested in a glove due to wrist pain and a need for support, this compression sleeve offers protection and compression without limiting your range of movement. They’ve been shown to be helpful for folks practicing yoga with carpal tunnel. Of course, please be sure to check with your doctor before practicing yoga with an injury or other condition.
Unlike the other products on this list, the CopperJoint glove comes as a single item rather than a pair. It also comes in several different sizes, so take the time to use their measurement chart to ensure the best fit. Price point: Average
Alternate Choice for Padded Gloves: Gaiam Yoga Gloves
These Gaiam gloves are specially formulated to provide you with a non-slip, stable surface that you can take with you anywhere! They also work well with a mat to provide extra traction and stability. These aren’t padded nearly as much as the Yoga Paws gloves, but they are cheaper in terms of price.
They come in three styles, one of which, called “Performance,” has a slightly thicker material with more traction and a velcro wrist strap. The matching socks, Gaiam Yoga Socks, are sold separately but recommended for practicing without a mat. Price point: Afforable Read our complete Gaiam glove review
Best Yoga Gloves for Sweaty Hands: YogaPaws SkinThin Non-Padded Gloves
One of the drawbacks of yoga gloves is that they can be hot and your hands may sweat a lot. That means they’re not ideal for hot yoga, where the temperature of the room is close to 100 degrees and you’ll already be sweating buckets.
However, the SkinThin model of gloves from YogaPaws is great because they are super thin. That’s why they call them SkinThin! These are essentially the opposite of the Yoga Paws ELITE, which are designed to be thick and padded.
These SkinThin gloves don’t have sticky dots and instead have a full palm covered in rubber, which keeps you in place. They also come in four different sizes, a rarity for yoga gloves, so you can get an exact fit. Check the sizing chart image on Amazon to get the proper measurement. Price point: Expensive
Alternate Nonslip Choice: FEELGOOD Nonslip Yoga Pilates Gloves and Socks
These FEELGOOD gloves and socks provide slip protection, but they take the cake for comfort and wear-ability. Ideal for keeping warm in winter months, this cozy option has a mostly cotton blend that provides plenty of warmth plus moisture wicking for maximum comfort.
Note that these are labeled as “one size fits most,” so if you have very large feet or hands, you may want to look around for a different product. For a majority of yogis, these will do just fine. Price point: Average
Best Value for a Package: Stargoods 4-Pack of Non-Slip Gloves
If you’re seeking multiple pairs of gloves at a good price, check out this Stargoods package. The item comes with four non-slip grippy pairs of gloves, in black, blue, pink, and grey colors. Their traction hand design will hold you in place.
The level of grip is average, which is what you should expect for such a cheap price. The best thing about the Stargoods package is that it comes with a bonus yoga strap for stretching! Straps alone can sometimes cost $10-20, so this package is really a steal. You can also buy the package without the strap, but since the strap is only $1 more, why not go for it? Price point: Affordable
Alternative Thin Women’s Gloves Package: HaveDream NonSlip Workout Gloves
Need another option when it comes to gloves that are very thin but still grippy? The HaveDream yoga gloves are a good choice. They are tight and form-fitting on the hands, which means you can get through your normal yoga practice without noticing them too much.
The HaveDream gloves are labeled as unisex and one size fits all, but due to their smaller size, they are most appropriate for women. Note that these gloves come in a package of four pairs, all with different colors. So you’re getting a lot of gloves for your money. Price point: Affordable
The Benefits of Yoga Gloves
While yoga gloves may bring a whole host of benefits to your practice, these are the most widely recognized:
They provide extra traction.
The main function of yoga gloves is to prevent your hands or feet (or both) from slipping during practice. They are specially formulated to grip your mat or other materials such as the floor or carpet.
They can be particularly useful for individuals who sweat a lot or do not like the feel of a sticky yoga mat but like to have the added traction. Finding yoga gloves for sweaty hands can be a challenge, but we’ve listed several options that will work great, including the Yoga Paws SkinThin.
They enable you to practice yoga without a mat when needed.
Yoga gloves, if worn on both the hands and feet, can enable you to ditch your yoga mat and practice yoga without a mat on occasion. This can be especially useful for traveling if you don’t want to invest in a travel yoga mat, or if you have extremely limited space for gear.
Gloves can provide extra support for the wrist.
Some types of yoga gloves are ergonomically designed to provide proper support to your wrists during practice and prevent wrist pain. These gloves can also help to remind you to use correct alignment in poses that place a lot of pressure on your hands and wrists. These are poses like Tabletop, Plank, and Downward Facing Dog.
You may find that yoga gloves benefit you in other ways. They can be particularly useful in the winter months when the cold air might otherwise deter you from stepping onto your mat. Gloves and socks help to provide warmth without compromising your ability to practice.
Other people use gloves and socks because they can help to minimize direct contact with bacteria in public spaces. Or they simply want to avoid calluses and bruises that can come from repeated yoga practice with sensitive hands.
Things to Keep in Mind When Making a Purchase
No matter which style you opt for or your reason for purchasing, remember that the key to yoga gloves is getting the fit right. Your gloves should fit snugly without restricting your range of motion.
You should also take the breathability of the fabric into consideration and opt for moisture-wicking fabric blends that will keep you dry and comfortable. When maximizing for coziness and warmth, you may choose to forsake breathability in exchange for easy machine washing.
Practicing with yoga gloves and socks may take some time to get used to. Remember to be mindful of your transitions between poses and take your time as you adjust to the added grip!
Frequently Asked Questions About Yoga Gloves
Are yoga gloves machine washable?
In most cases, yes, but check the product label to be sure. Even if your particular gloves are machine washable, don’t overdo it. Excessive washing can cause some of the rubber traction nubs to come off, which you definitely don’t want! Wash the gloves in cold water, unless you want to risk shrinking them.
Should I go with padded yoga gloves, or thin ones?
This depends on why you’re buying gloves in the first place. If you need wrist support, absolutely consider going with the padded gloves, especially a product like the WAGs that come with a gel insert.
If you’re buying gloves merely for the traction, then thinner is better. Read the reviews and pick the gloves that you believe will give you the best grip on your mat.
How durable are yoga gloves?
This varies by brand and product. In general, you shouldn’t expect the cheapest products to last more than a year or two.They are more likely to get stretched out or lose their traction.
The more expensive and more sturdy (aka, padded) gloves could give you several years’ worth of use. The good news is that gloves aren’t that expensive, so replacing them won’t break your budget.
Which brands are most reliable?
All of the brands on our list are solid, but a few brands have earned a particularly strong reputation. Gaiam is a brand that has been around forever, and they make some of our top recommended yoga products, from towels to foam blocks.
Yoga Paws is the other top brand in this space. Both their ELITE padded gloves and their SkinThin non-padded gloves are excellent quality. And finally, when it comes to wrist support, you can’t beat the WAGs Ultra gloves.
As a reminder, if you are experiencing any pain or discomfort, consult with your doctor before participating in any physical activity such as yoga.