Last Updated on 27/08/2023
Best Bushcraft Gloves
Top 10 Best Bushcraft Gloves for Camping and Outdoor Work
If you are looking for the best bushcraft gloves that will take care of your hands while performing rugged outdoor tasks, then you are in the right place. Today we are reviewing 10 of the best bushcraft gloves for keeping your hands splinter, thorn, and blister-free. Admittedly most of these outdoor gloves are not designed specifically for camping or bushcraft. However, because of the materials used and reinforced construction, they work better than any other for outdoor work.
What Makes Bushcraft Gloves Different?
Bushcraft-specific gloves are fairly rare in terms of what is available today but there are plenty of outdoor work gloves that will do the job just fine. What makes the best gloves for bushcraft is often a good balance between rugged toughness and flexible dexterity. If you can get enough protection on the key parts of your hands without losing the ability to effectively use your fingers then you are onto a winner.
Types of Gloves You Can Use for Bushcraft
Leather work gloves, mechanics gloves, gardening gloves, and safety gloves all make great bushcraft gloves because they are all designed to protect your hands first. They are not made to look pretty but they might just save your fingers one day. Leather gardening gloves are probably my favorite for detailed camp work while full leather work gloves are ideal for any kind of heavy-handed task.
Bushcraft Glove Size Chart
Getting a pair of well-fitted gloves is a bit like having a comfortable pair of hiking boots and is important if you plan on wearing them for prolonged use. The sizing is just like with any other glove and will make the difference between using your gloves every day and shopping for a new pair of gloves. With a size chart like the one below, you can get a pretty accurate fit with most bushcraft gloves.
Top 10 Best Bushcraft Gloves
Hestra Skullman Outdoor Work Gloves
- Goat Leather is durable and works well with everyday gloves
- Elastic around the wrist
- A leather pull strap is a decorative way to help the glove to stay in place and at the same time protect against cold air
The Hestra Skullman Outdoor Work Gloves are a premium product that have been built with care and craftsmanship using only the best materials. The versatile and supple leather gives you ample dexterity and grip in all conditions and are easy to get on and off.
The Hestra brand is highly regarded by notorious survivalist Ray Mears which is normally a good signal of quality, which in this case is true. These bushcraft gloves aren’t lined but they pair very well with a thin pair of gloves underneath in winter or a glove liner in autumn. Light padding in the palm provides extra protection when using hand tools while the long cuffs are great for working with fires and preventing debris/snow inside.
Wells Lamont Hi-Dexterity Leather Work Gloves
- Grain leather palm, fingertips, first finger, and thumb
- Leather provides abrasion and puncture resistance
- Stretch spandex back for extra comfort
- Knuckles are lightly padded with a neoprene insert
- Comfort Closure adjustable wrist provides the perfect fit
The Wells Lamont Hi-Dexterity Leather Work Gloves are one of our favorite bushcraft gloves because of their rugged build and flexible design. The tough grain leather on the palm wraps around the fingertips and reinforces the forefinger and thumb for full durability when working.
The back of the glove is made of stretch spandex with padded knuckles for extra comfort and safety. The short wrist closure is great for maximizing freedom of movement while still keeping out dirt and debris. Wells Lamont is definitely a brand worth looking at if you are looking for the best bushcraft gloves.
Hestra Fält Guide Short Leather Glove
- Impregnated cowhide and impregnated Army Leather goatskin on the palm
- Removable liner with wool terrycloth on the palm and wool pile on the top of the hand
- Wool terry cloth – A knitted material whose curly fibers and terry loops together can bind a large amount of air – up to 80%
- Eyelet with a carabiner. External seams. Securing point for handcuffs
The Hestra Fält Guide Short Leather Glove is named after one of Swedens leading Survival experts, Lars Fält, who helped develop the glove. The combination of impregnated cowhide and impregnated Army Leather goatskin on the palm makes this one of the best bushcraft gloves in terms of durability available today.
Designed to house a removable wool terry cloth liner for insulation, comfort, and moisture-wicking but it also works well with other thin gloves. The solid design and choice of extremely hard-wearing leather make this an ideal bushcraft glove to keep in your backpack. You can use them to grab prickly bushes or remove a cast iron pan from a campfire which is why bushcrafters love the gloves.
Wells Lamont Leather Work Gloves with Wrist Closure
- High-quality grain cowhide
- Ball and tape wrist closure for a secure fit
- Reinforced leather palm patch for grip and durability
- Gunn cut
- Keystone thumb design
The Wells Lamont Leather Work Gloves are made from high-quality full-grain cowhide with a ball and tape wrist closure to keep debris out. The rugged leather is comfortable enough to wear every day and tough enough to resist abrasions and thorns with ease. An added leather patch on the palm provides adequate reinforcements for heavy-handed tasks in the wild and also improves your grip on heavy items.
The Wells Lamont Work Gloves are super comfortable and hard-wearing without a huge price tag and the fit only gets better with age. You can use them for building campfires, chopping wood in winter, or doing everyday bushcraft tasks.
Mechanix Wear MultiCam M-Pact Tactical Gloves
- Impact Guard™ protects knuckle with EVA foam padding
- Thermoplastic Rubber (TPR) knuckle guard and finger protection
- Form-fitting TrekDry® with MultiCam® camouflage helps keep hands cool and comfortable
- Armortex® palm reinforcement panel
- Dual-layer internal fingertip reinforcement provides added durability
- Embossed and textured index finger and thumb provides grip
- D3O® palm padding absorbs and dissipates high-impact energy and vibration.
- Durable microfiber palm
- Thermal Plastic Rubber (TPR) closure with hook and loop provides a secure fit
- Nylon pull loop
- Machine washable
The Mechanix Wear MultiCam M-Pact Tactical Gloves are ideal for any woodsman who likes to keep a low profile. The thermoplastic rubber knuckle guards and finger guards provide excellent protection on the tops of your hands and reinforcements on your fingertips for longevity. D3O® padding on the palms absorbs and disperses high-impact shock and vibration for everyday tasks like wood chopping.
Outdoor Research Splitter Work Gloves
- Durable, Breathable Goat Leather all over
- Anti-slip 55% polyurethane / 45% nylon overlay on Back of Knuckles
- 4.1oz / 115g Avg. Weight for size L
- Split Suede Overlays on Palm
- Pull Loop / Carabiner Loop
- Close Fitting for Optimal Dexterity
- Hook / Loop Wrist Closure
- Tapered Wrist
The Outdoor Research Splitter work gloves are designed for the four-season mountain climber to retain as much dexterity in all conditions as possible. The split suede overlays add an extra layer of reinforcement on the palm it is just a shame that doesn’t continue up the thumb and fingers. Even though these were designed for climbers to belay and rappel with, they also work well as a bushcraft glove and certainly feel the part.
Kinco Buffalo Leather Work Gloves with Nikwax
- Tough & Rugged Buffalo Leather – Buffalo out lasts All Other Leather – Durable but Pliable
- Nikwax Waterproofing
- Best Gloves for; Farm, Ranch, Rodeo, and Construction of any Kind
- Ergonomic Keystone Thumb & Shirred Elastic Back for a Snug Fit, which Keeps Debris Out
- Durable with Very Good Dexterity
The Kinco Buffalo Leather Work Gloves are the chosen glove of many ranchers, cowboys, and farmers because of their supple comfort and the longevity of the leather.
As mentioned in the features, buffalo leather will outlast all other leather gloves thanks to its thick fibrous construction. This translates to give your hands excellent protection and means you will rarely if ever, have to replace them (depending on how much you use them). The Nikwax waterproofing really helps keep your gloves dry so you can continue your daily tasks even in bad weather.
Caterpillar Black/Tan Leather Palm Work Gloves
- Premium deerskin palm and index finger
- Gel pad in the palm provides moderate impact and vibration protection and added wearability.
- Reinforced finger and thumb
- Breathable spandex back stretches with hand movement
- Wing thumb and shirred elastic wrist for a snug fit
- Cat logo rubber patch on the cuff of each hand
The Caterpillar Black/Tan Leather Palm Work Gloves are designed for builders and tradesmen who rely on their hands to earn a living so you can be sure your hands are protected with these. The supple but durable leather provides comfort as well as protection with a fit that will improve with use. The gel-padded palm is great for wielding hand tools and is unnoticeable the rest of the time.
Kinco 101HK-L-1 Lined Deerskin Glove
- Golden grain deerskin on the palm, knuckles, and fingertips
- Form-fitting, stretchable black polyester-spandex fabric back
- Easy-On cuff with shirred elastic wrist
- Wrap-around index finger and knuckle design
- Angled wing thumb
- Turned leather hem
- High-performance signature Heatkeep thermal lining, laminated with a soft TR2 inner lining
The Kinco 101HK-L-1 Lined Deerskin Gloves are naturally soft and supple with ample dexterity for continuous comfortable wear. There isn’t much reinforcement on the palms but the leather is thick enough to protect you from most perforations and abrasions.
The wrap-around finger design increases durability on high-rub areas and reduces the chance of seam failure in the field. An angled wing thumb provides plenty of comfort and gripping flexibility with a seamless transition to the palm. The thermal lining is more than welcome in cold weather and helps wick moisture in summer – WIN-WIN!
Custom Leathercraft 160L Contractor Gloves
- Clarino synthetic leather is tough, soft, and comfortable to wear, resists shrinking, stretching, and hardening
- Embossed PVC palm pads for excellent grip and durability
- Lycra side panels for improved dexterity
- Terry-wipe thumb to remove sweat
- Syntrex microfiber palm (more durable microfiber)
- Textured reinforcing on fingertips, palm, thumb, and all fingers
- Spandex back with embossed neoprene padded knuckles and padded fingers
- Full neoprene padded cuff with hook and loop close
- Texture Tab for easier donning
- Stretch Fit panel at thumb for increased dexterity
The Custom Leathercraft 160L Contractor gloves are fairly well-engineered with lots of different panels and reinforcements but are surprisingly made of synthetic leather. These bushcraft gloves may have a high-tech appearance but the textured reinforcements all have a role to play in resisting abrasions and protecting your hands.
Stretchy side panels improve flexibility and the snug fit allows you to keep decent dexterity in your fingers. I doubt the synthetic leather will outlast any of the other leather bushcraft gloves on this list but I could be wrong. Still, not a bad camping glove for the money.
Is Leather the Best Material for Bushcraft Gloves?
Leather is by far and away the best material for bushcraft gloves for many reasons and is almost unmatched in its durability. Leather is a natural, sustainable, and biodegradable material that has been used for thousands of years for good reason. Leather is tough, waterproof, supple, and can be maintained for many years, which makes it great for gloves that get used hard when working outdoors.
What to Look for In a Bushcraft Glove
Here are some of the features you can look for in a strong bush crafting glove:
There are a few ways you can go with this, and you have to ask yourself what kind of glove you need. Warm or breathable, thick and durable or thin dextrous? And really, this leads you to two options which are; full leather or a combination of synthetic panels with leather reinforcements. Bushcraft gloves need to be very hardwearing more than they need to have generous dexterity, so we lean towards full leather gloves for camping and working with your hands outdoors.
Reinforcements are great for high-impact areas and areas that wear down quicker than others through repetitive use. The areas that should be reinforced are the palms of your hands as well as the thumb and forefinger. Ideally, all the fingers, as well as the knuckles, will be reinforced too but the palm and thumb are the most crucial reinforced areas.
Dexterity is important for some tasks, but with bushcraft gloves, it is often better to have a less durable glove and then take it off when you need to use your fingertips. Even the thickest bushcraft gloves will be at least somewhat flexible and certainly able to grab most things at least 1 inch in size. If dexterity is important to you because you plan to use your gloves for a specific task, then you can, of course, choose a thinner outdoor work glove.
Size and Fit
Fit is not quite as important as it is with footwear, but a well-fitted glove is much better for bushcraft and handling tools. You can get away with wearing gloves that are too big which will still protect your hands and allow you to grab things, they will just feel baggy and clunky. You can also squeeze into gloves that are too small, and to a certain point, this can be better than gloves that are too big. The problem with gloves that are too small is that they lose a lot of their flexibility.
Cuffs and Closure
Whether you choose an elasticated cuff or a strap closure, your glove should feel secure when it is on. Some tick leather gloves will have neither and instead have a slim wrist that is big enough to fit your hand through but tight enough to stop your glove from falling off. Wide cuffs are good for fitting over your jacket sleeve but also lose more heat. A sealed cuff helps keep the heat in and also prevents snow or debris from getting in.
Are Bushcraft Gloves Insulated?
There is a wide variety of insulated bushcraft gloves available, but I prefer a thick outer pair lined with some wool gloves inside. The problem with insulated gloves for bush crafting is that you lose a tremendous amount of dexterity with your fingertips. Still, you can’t let your fingers freeze, so be sure to wrap them up.
Fingerless Bushcraft Gloves Vs Full Finger Gloves for Bushcraft
The benefit of fingerless gloves for bushcraft vs full finger gloves is that you retain full dexterity of your fingertips. This means you can feel the texture of things, test the temperature of things, and grip intricate items like a piece of string with ease. The downside is that you get cold fingertips.
With full-finger gloves, you have the opposite problem, and so the best alternative to both is a fingerless glove/mitten hybrid. These have a fold-over finger cover which means you can keep your fingers warm until you need them, and then you can easily flip the cover-up.
Thanks for reading this guide to the top 10 best bushcraft gloves.