mittens cold weatherWinter Gloves and Mittens
Extreme Weather Protection

Keep your hands warm in cold temperatures.

This is the US page | Go to UK page 

Quick purchase links
Light weight gloves - men's  women's
Heavy weight gloves - men's  women's
Over mittens - men's 

Your hands have a large surface area compared to their volume, this means that they lose heat rapidly in cold conditions. In addition to this this, the muscles that operate your hands are mainly located in your forearm, you can feel this by holding one forearm with the other hand then and alternately making and relaxing a fist, the muscles can be felt tensing and relaxing. So even when your hands are used extensively, the heat generated does little to help warm up the hand.

This means that gloves or mittens are essential in cold conditions and indispensable unless you walk around all of the time with your hands in your pockets. Mittens will always be warmer than gloves if made out the same materials, but reduce dexterity. Gloves will never be as warm as mittens made in the same way.

Lightweight Gloves

As temperatures start to cool, the first call is to gloves that are thin and soft without a wind or waterproof outer layer. These will give you good dexterity, sensor gloves enable the operation of touchscreen devices. If you can put your hands in your pockets when not needed, these thin gloves will be sufficient for quite a while.

glove liners

Heavyweight Gloves

As the temperature continues to fall, heavier weight gloves with an outer layer that is wind proof and water resistant are the next step if you still need some manual dexterity, these are often described as ski gloves. If you need a greater degree of warmth then you need mittens, less expensive mittens will suffice if you don't need the dexterity.

men's ski glove

Over Mittens

In the very coldest temperatures a pair of insulated glove liners with substantial over mittens are needed. If you need to, you can slip off the mittens for finer handling using the gloves alone for a short time, with just mittens you would be bare handed otherwise which could be uncomfortable, painful or even dangerous.


Good sized cuffs for gloves and mittens make them more effective as they cover the wrist and prevent a bare or thinly insulated region between the glove and coat sleeve, it all becomes one toasty insulated continuum. With thin gloves the cuff goes under the sleeve, with substantial gloves and mittens, the wide long cuff goes over the sleeve and has a draw cord or velcro closure to close it down, the most effective and warmest of all have cuffs that reach part way up the forearm.

Some gloves and mittens have a patch of fur on the back (often synthetic) that can be placed against cheeks or nose if they start to turn pasty white with frostnip.

For extra dexterity, fingerless gloves are available, I can't recommend them. They lack insulation at precisely the place where it is most important, avoid unless you know you like them. Some mittens come with a flip-top that exposes the fingers underneath if you need dexterity and some that have a pouch where you can insert a chemical heat pack.

Recommended Winter Gloves
and Mittens

Note - giving gloves and mittens the name "Extreme" or labeling them "-20 F !" or similar does not make them extreme or guarantee that they will keep you warm down at that temperature, so take it with a pinch of salt. It doesn't mean that they are not good though when used within their (lesser) limits.

Most styles here are unisex or available in men's and women's sizes

Achiou Knit Gloves Touchscreen

Soft Lining Elastic Cuff Anti-Slip, size choice unisex

Vgo 2-Pairs, 3M Thinsulate Touchscreen

Synthetic Leather Gloves, Waterproof Insert

black diamond mittens
Black Diamond Cold Weather Mittens

High quality extreme cold weather mittens, men's and women's styles


gore-tex mittens
Burton Gore-Tex Mitts

Waterproof breathable mittens for serious conditions

Carhartt Men's Cold Snap Insulated Work Gloves

Tough work gloves for outdoor winter tasks

smartphone gloves
Outdoor Research Flurry, Sensor Gloves

For colder weather, water resistant, touchscreen
Men's  |  Women's

heated gloves
Heated Gloves

with rechargeable battery packs, ski, motorcycle, arthritis

winter gloves
Under Armour Armour Liner 2.0 Gloves

close fit base-layer / running

Dakine Men's Scout Gloves
Dakine Men's Scout

Ski/snowboard, bestselling classic
short or long, glove or mitt

extreme winter mitten

Hestra Heli Ski Gloves or Mittens

Leather palms, seriously warm without excess bulk

gore-tex mittens Freyja Canada Icelandic Wool Fleece Lined
Warm Women's Knit Mittens, in a range of colors

Fox River Ragg Mittens
Ojbro Swedish 100% Merino Wool (as Featured by the Raynauds Assn)

ssuper soft, extra thick, in a range of colors

cold weather glove liners
Terramar Thermasilk Glove Liner

100% silk, warmth with dexterity or inner gloves in colder weather, black, white or natural