Gloves that cover the entire hand but do not have separate sheaths or finger openings are known as mittens. However, they separate the thumb and have a single compartment for four fingers. This structure helps the wearer to enjoy easy-grip hiking or snowboarding sticks etc. Today we can find these mittens in many different colours, shapes and materials. However, a common feature is that all the available styles have higher thermal efficiency as compared to gloves. Plus, they have a smaller surface area exposed to cold.
The earliest mitten known to archaeologists dates back to 1000 A.D in Latvia. Interestingly, mittens are still part of the National Costume of Latvia. According to historians, there are possibilities of the even more ancient existence of the mittens. But as they are majorly made of wool, all early traces might disintegrate with time. The belief is also supported by the discovery of wool mitten from the 8th century found in the harbour area. Although all the discovered mittens were made of wool, today you can find them made from a variety of materials including polyester and birds down. Today, we will discuss the available modern variations in mittens and how they differ from traditional gloves for snow sports.
The snowboard mittens and gloves are the most important accessories for sports like snowboarding or skiing. Choosing the right pair might seem straightforward; some major differences are important to consider. Specifically, when you are heading to a cold-weather situation, features like warmth, fit, material, and dryness become crucial. In this guide, we will help you understand the different types of materials and what makes gloves and mittens different. Here relevant is to note that the right pair of mittens or gloves for your snow sport can make a difference between a miserable trip with frigid fingers and a comfortable outing. Here is all that you need to know about mitten and gloves.
Gloves have individual fingers. So, they offer better dexterity and are ideal for activities where you need to handle gears zip the zippers, adjust boot buckles etc. A nice pair of lightweight gloves are an excellent choice for aerobic activities like cross-country skiing or other times when your body is generating lots of heat. On the other hand, mittens are warmer than gloves. This is because your fingers generate more heat when they are not separate (as they are in gloves). Mitten gloves are not as dexterous as gloves, but they still serve well when you hold ski poles, carving down the mountains or heating out for a hike in frigid temperature.
Both gloves and mittens use two basic types of insulation; synthetic fibres and natural down. Both work well in their own ways. Down is an exceptional natural insulation that is amazingly lightweight. Plus, it is breathable, long-lasting and easy to compress. However, it comes with a tradeoff being more expensive than synthetic. Plus, it loses its warming ability when wet, and this is why it always comes with a waterproof outer shell. Synthetic insulation, on the other hand, is less expensive, insulates when wet and dries a lot faster. It is ideal for snow sports in a damp climate. However, the tradeoff is that they offer comparatively lesser insulation and warmth and are a bit bulkier than down.
Luckily almost all modern-day gloves and mittens come with waterproof outer layering. These special outer shells are highly breathable yet effective barriers to prevent moisture from wind and snow from getting into the glove. Meanwhile, they allow an easy escape to sweat out of the glove/mitten. Commonly and most liked technology you can find is “Gore-Tex.” Meanwhile, other options available in the market are The North Face HyVent, and Marmot MemBrain. They are equally valid yet less expensive. Waterproof mittens and gloves are always 100% windproof hence helping in maintaining and keeping warmth inside the gloves.
When it comes to snowboarding, size becomes a crucial factor. A proper fit is a key to keeping your hands warm and comfortable. Plus, it takes part in maintaining the dexterity of the wearer. Mittens and gloves that are too big won’t keep the hand warm. Plus, they will make it difficult to hold gadgets (ski poles), operate zippers and perform other tasks. Likewise, if they are too small, you will have restrictions in movement with exposure at your wrist. A properly fitted mitten/glove will have about ¼ inches of material at the end of your outstretched fingers. Likewise, the fit should also be neither too tight nor loose. To find the right fit, you can consult the sizing chart from the brand you are buying.
Modern-day sports call for care and fun side by side. Whether you are a professional or a recreational sportsman, proper sportswear is a must. Surprisingly each item on your sportswear list has a purpose. The same is the case with gloves. Plus, each sport demands a different shape, material and make of glove to protect your hands from injuries. The same way snowboarding gloves and mittens work and take care of your hands in cold situations. But more important is that you can buy the right pair of mittens or gloves for you. And here is we will guide you on how to pro your mitten buying skills, just in time when you need it.
Besides the features of the product itself, the manufacture also plays a role in the performance of the mitten. This is why when it comes to buying even a cheap knit mitten for beginners or adults, branded fashion accessories are the choice of most skiers and snowboarders. Hence when you head to buy fingerless gloves with mitten covers for women or the best-rated men’s ski mitten, set for nothing less than a reliable and known brand.
A good pair of mittens will always offer you warmth without any compromise on the fit and comfort. Plus, it should not be a premium product that makes you think twice about spending that much money. Some of the bestselling items include RefrigiWear – Extreme Mitt, 30-degree Fahrenheit temperature rating, Black Diamond – Soloist Finger Gloves, and the Tough Outdoors – Winter Snow & Ski Mittens. Other names on the list are; N’Ice Caps – Thinsulate Winter Ski Mittens, the Carhartt – Waterproof Insulated Mitt and Gordini – Aquabloc Gauntlet Mitts.
Yes, a mitten keeps you warm and work better than gloves. Even though the mitten and gloves are equal in all ways (saying insulation material, thickness and fabric) the aforementioned is efficient in locking the warmth inside the compartment. This is because the mitten traps body heat by keeping the finger together and reducing the evaporative heat loss. Plus, in frigid temperature the layers of mitten dry faster than a single insulated piece, letting you swap out wet layers.
The washing and care of a leather mitten are different than that of wool make mitten or glove. To wash a woollen mitten, use warm water in a sink with a high drop quality gentle hand or dish soap. Allow it to soak for a while so that the soap works its way deep into the glove. Now drain the water and lay the gloves flat on a clean surface and use fingers to press out water. Don’t wring or twist them. Put the gloves in a towel and roll up to press out the excess water out of gloves. Now unroll the towel and put it flat and let it dry properly before you use them.
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We hope you are convinced to add this small accessory to your snow sportswear list. This considerably small investment can surely make your day and keep your hands safe from injuries.