Best Welding Gloves Buyer’s Guide

Best welding gloves

Every welder has been betrayed at least once in his life by the low quality of their gloves. We know the pain! We also know that finding the best welder gloves should be a top priority for an expert.

To help you out, we’ve created this buyer’s guide. Lists like this one have helped thousands of beginners and even professional welders find their best protection: durable, heat-resistant and comfortable. 

Here, you will find a lot of useful information about the choice of welding gloves and the TOP 7 best models out there. We’ll discuss glove types, materials, their use, and heat withstanding capabilities. These are the most important criteria to make the right decision.

Hope you’ll enjoy the ride!

What Gloves Do I Need and How to Choose Them?

The main choosing factor is the most frequent type of welding that you do. If you’re a diverse welder, the chances are that several pairs are crucial for success and avoiding injuries.

Factor to consider when choosing welding gloves

However, not depending on the welding type, you’ll need the following qualities:

  • Heat protection.
    The utmost priority for any protective glove is heat resistance. The level of protection is determined by the type of job you’re doing, but the more protection you can get, the better. 932 F (500 C) is a great standard for most welding gloves.
  • No bulkiness.
    While in some applications you need a lot of heat-resistant lining, most times, there should be a balance of protection and comfort. If the gloves are too bulky, you won’t be able to keep a grip on the instruments. Your hands may also get hot due to your natural body temperature, which will make the work even less convenient.
  • Dexterity.
    The flexibility of movement isn’t the first priority for a lot of applications, but some extent of dexterity is still important. Think about the hand maneuvers you will need to do to determine how much flexibility you will need.
  • Durability.
    The materials have to be wear and tear-resistant, including the threads for stitches. The best option at the moment is 100% Kevlar stitching. It’s heat-resistant and will last for a longer time.
  • Cut and puncture protection.
    Last but not least, the gloves should be protected from metal debris and other potential damage. Sharp metal parts and abrasive materials are usually all over the place, and your hands have to be protected from them as well as from the heat.

Combining all these factors and the welding type you’re doing will get you the perfect protective glove model.

Top Pick
Caiman 1878-5 (2)

Caiman 1878-5

  • Genuine American deerskin & Boarhide leather pull-strap
  • Sewn with Kevlar thread
  • 3-Dimensional, pre-curved fingers, and form-fitting design

Caiman 1878-5 21-Inch Welding Glove is the best choice you can make, according to our research and testing. It’s suitable for overhead welding, as well as plasma and stick. It’s  heavy-duty, so if you’re looking for top-notch protection and durability, this is a great choice!

Welding Gloves Comparison Chart

ImageProductPrice
Caiman 1878-5 (1)Caiman 1878-5

Material: Genuine American deerskin
Temperature rating: n/a
Length: 21'' (53,3 cm)
Type of welding: Plasma, stick, and overhead welding
Lincoln Electric K2979-ALLLincoln Electric K2979-ALL

Material: Cowhide leather
Temperature rating: 500 F (260 C)
Length: 14"' (35,5 cm) 
Type of welding: MIG, flux-core, and stick welding
RAPICCA(1)RAPICCA

Material: Cowhide leather
Temperature rating: 932 F (500 C)
Length: 16" (40,6 cm)
Type of welding: MIG and stick welding
John Tillman and Co TIL50LJohn Tillman and Co TIL50L

Material: Cough cowhide leather
Temperature rating: 932 F (500 C)
Length: 14" (35,5 cm)
Type of welding: MIG welding
Lincoln Electric K2983-LLincoln Electric K2983-L

Material: Grain goatskin and cowhide leather
Temperature rating: n/a
Length: n/a
Type of welding: TIG welding
Miller Electric 263343 ReviewMiller Electric 263343

Material: Cow split leather and wool
Temperature rating: 932 F (500 C)
Length: n/a
Type of welding: MIG and stick welding
WZQH 1109-16934 ReviewWZQH 1109-16934

Material: Cowhide split leather
Temperature rating: 932 F (500 C)
Length: 16'' (40,6 cm)
Type of welding: Stick, TIG and MIG welding

7 Best Welding Gloves (as of September, 2021)

1. Caiman 1878-5 Welding Gloves – Best Welding Gloves for Plasma Review

Caiman 1878-5 Review, Pros and Cons

Caiman 21” (53,3 cm) gloves are claimed to be the first ones with such length. These are for plasma, stick, and overhead welding. The gloves have heavy-duty padding we really appreciated during tests.

Material and Protection

The main material of these gloves is genuine American deerskin. For more fire and heat protection, the manufacturer decided to add boarhide leather. The cuff, which leans on the heat-protective layer, and the palm reinforcement are also boarhide leather.

The saws are made with 100% Kevlar thread, providing extra durability, which is one of the most important factors in the choice of welding gloves.

They withstand most high-temperature applications.

Comfort and Sizes

The size is stated as one-fits-all, but some reviewers state that it’s too large for their hands. This is logical since it’s difficult to fit all hands with one size. To make sure you get the most comfort, find out your size, and choose a model that will fit.

These gloves have a 3-dimensional design for improved comfort, repeating the shape of your hand.

Pros:

  • Innovative design;
  • 21” (53,3 cm) gloves;
  • Durable;
  • Heavy-duty padding;
  • Great comfort.

Cons:

  • The area between the fingers isn’t as heat-resistant as the tan parts.

2. Lincoln Electric K2979-ALL Welding Gloves – Best Lincoln Industrial Welding Gloves Review

Lincoln Electric K2979-ALL Review, Pros and Cons

The best Lincoln Electric model is suitable for MIG, flux-core, and stick welding. They are made with the addition of cotton liner for increased comfort. The materials are very high-quality, which is great not only comfort-wise but also in terms of durability.

Material and Protection

The gloves are made from strong cowhide leather on the outside, sewn with 100% Kevlar thread, and has a twill cotton padding on the inside that not only prevents irritation on hands but also absorbs moisture.

Temperature is at least 500 F (260 C), and the reinforced parts are resistant to flame, sparks, and spatter.

Comfort and Sizes

These Lincoln gloves have a straight thumb design and great sensitivity on your fingertips. The combination of tough cowhide leather and soft padding creates a comfortable environment for your hands.

The model comes in one size, so make sure you know if your hands have any special needs, for which one-size gloves aren’t suitable.

Pros:

  • Strong leather;
  • Soft cotton lining;
  • 100% Kevlar thread;
  • Suitable for high-temperature applications;
  • Comfortable straight thumb design.

Cons:

  • Might be too stiff in the pinky finger area.

3. RAPICCA Welding Gloves – Best MIG Welding Gloves Review

RAPICCA Review, Pros and Cons

These 16” (40,6 cm) RAPICCA welding gloves are the best for MIG and suitable for stick welding. You can also use them for fireplace maintenance, grill, oven, and other high-temperature applications.

Material and Protection

This model is made from durable cowhide leather with elements from insulated cotton as paddings and air-isolated aluminum foil for fire resistance. RAPICCA is the only company that offers double reinforcement, which adds to the durability and comfort of work.

Overall, there are four layers that provide superior flames and heat resistance. The cotton padding on the inside is breathable, hypoallergenic, and absorbs moisture.

The gloves provide great fire resistance and heat protection in temperatures up to 932 F (500 C).

Comfort and Sizes 

The 7.5” (19 cm) sleeve will protect your forearm from sparks and metal debris. Although there are at least four layers, the gloves are comfortable if the size fits.

The manufacturer states that these usually fit L/XL hands, but if yours are smaller, this model may be too large.

The gloves are resistant to heat, cold, fire, punctures. Every buyer gets a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee from the company, so if the size doesn’t fit, you can return the gloves.

Pros:

  • 1.5 mm (0,05″) cowhide leather;
  • Comfortable cotton padding;
  • 4-layer protection;
  • Fire, heat, cold, puncture resistance;
  • Suitable for high-temperature applications

Cons:

  • Stitches last less than the glove itself.

4. John Tillman and Co TIL50L – Best Tillman Welding Gloves Review

John Tillman and Co TIL50L Review, pros and Cons

These Tillman 14” (35,5 cm) welding gloves provide protection in both cold and hot environments. They are suitable for MIG welding and other environments with very high or very low temperatures. Given the possibilities, they’re not bulky at all.

Material and Protection

The gloves are made from tough cowhide leather with grain on the top and have a fleece lining. The cuff is 4” (10 cm) , sewn with 100% Kevlar thread for more durability and heat resistance.

They provide great protection and comfort with seamless forefinger and elastic back for ease of application.

Fleece helps avoid bulkiness and keep your hands protected. Heat resistance is best up to 932 F (500 C).

Comfort and Sizes

These US-made gloves will fit different hands due to elastic backing that adapts to the form of your hand. The best fit is for L-sized hands.

Finger sensitivity is achieved due to the seamless front part. The grain on the index finger and other parts also contributes to a better feel, so you’ll never lose a grip on the instrument. 

Pros:

  • High-quality cowhide;
  • Fleece lining for better temperature resistance;
  • Not bulky;
  • Elastic backing for better sizing.

Cons:

  • Tight at first but relaxes with time.

5. Lincoln Electric K2983-L – Best TIG Welding Gloves Review

Lincoln Electric K2983-L Review, pros and Cons

Another Lincoln model on the list, these were tested as the best for TIG welding. These are of premium quality and high dexterity. The side reinforcement makes it very good for TIG welding because your hand will be dragged in metal quite often.

Material and Protection

Top-quality grain goatskin and cowhide leather are tough yet soft enough for the comfort of use. You will also benefit from the knit cotton liner, which increases heat resisting capabilities and provides extra durability.

The side hand reinforcement protects from any abrasive material, preventing premature wear and tear.

Comfort and Sizes

The design provides great hand flexibility without losses in protection capabilities. The palm is padded with small cushions, and the bottom part is unlined for extra dexterity. You have both a good grip and comfort for the hands.

The model is available in sizes M to XL, which is an advantage compared to one-size gloves.

Pros:

  • Great design for flexibility and grip;
  • Size variety;
  • Tough goatskin and cowhide;
  • Side hand reinforcements.esign

Cons:

  • The base of the middle or index finger might get irritated after long use.

6. Miller Electric 263343 – Best Miller Welding Gloves Review

Miller Electric 263343 Review

These Miller Arc Armor gloves provide great protection for MIG and stick welding. They’re also suitable for other metalworking applications due to superior durability. The protective patches are located strategically in places most susceptible to wear, and the quality of materials is high overall.

Material and Protection

The main materials are cow split leather and wool; the palm and back of the hand are insulated with double layers. The wool lining offers great heat resistance and comfort for your hands.

The seams are made with 100% Kevlar thread for extra heat and flame resistance.

The temperature resistance is standard high, up to 932 F (500 C) and more, but only for short-term use. Higher temperatures imply shorter use, 10-20 seconds, and not more.

Comfort and Sizes

Pre-curved finger design provides comfort and ergonomic suitability. Extra dexterity is achieved by the wing-thumb design, so your hands are free in movement yet protected at all times.

They come in L size, which is the most popular among welders.

Pros:

  • High-quality material;
  • Woolen lining for comfort and protection;
  • Pre-curved and wing-thumb design for extra comfort;
  • High-temperature resistance.

Cons:

  • There might be too much material on the palm, making it harder to keep a good grip.

7. WZQH 1109-16934 – Best Stick Welding Gloves Review

These WZQH 16” (40,6 cm) gloves are the most suitable for stick welding. You can also use them for TIG and MIG types, as well as for household applications like fireplace maintenance, barbeque, pot holding, and more.

They provide superior heat and cold resistance due to multiple layers of protective materials.

Material and Protection

The outer layer is genuine cowhide split leather. It’s wear-resistant and quite relatively thick (1.2 mm/0,04”), which allows for great protection in combination with the inner layers.

These include insulated cotton, flame-retardant stitches, as well as air-insulated aluminum foil. The inner cotton lining allows your hands to breathe, absorbs moisture, and doesn’t cause allergies. 

There’s a guarantee on heat resistance up to 932 F (500 C). The gloves are resistant to damage and oil as well.

Comfort and Sizes

The sleeve is 7.5” (19,05 cm), providing the same level of protection for your forearm as for the palm and fingers.

The size is on-fit-all, so make sure such a size will fit your hand. Most of the time, L-sized hands are the best for this kind of gloves.

The gloves are claimed to be suitable for both men and women, but clearly, some will find them too spacious for their hands.

Another great thing is the lifetime guarantee by the manufacturer. If you register the product, all the issues will be resolved quickly if you contact the company by email notifying about the problem.

Pros:

  • Premium protection;
  • Long 7.5” (19,05 cm) sleeve for forearm protection;
  • Several levels of fire and heat-resistant materials;
  • Also resist cold;
  • Good for household applications other than welding.

Cons:

  • They come in one size that won’t fit everybody.

Best Welding Gloves Buyer’s Guide: What They Are, Why Buy Them, What to Look in a Pair, FAQ

Welding gloves are specially manufactured for working in high-temperature environments. They protect your hands from the heat, flames, metal debris, sparks, and other potentially dangerous factors of the job.

While some beginners think they can just buy a regular pair of thick gloves, professionals know that they need extra protection. Regular gloves will heat up and may hurt your hand by burning off it.

You need flame-retardant, heat-resistant materials for proper protection. This allows you to focus on the work and not on the danger and/or pain.

Welding Glove Types

There are three main protective glove types according to kinds of welding:

  • TIG;
  • MIG;
  • Stick.

TIG Welding Gloves

Gloves suitable for TIG welding should offer sufficient dexterity. While heat protection is also important, the most crucial thing is the ability to perform detailed maneuvers with your hands. Precision is a priority in TIG welding.

The best materials and design for this type of gloves are goatskin and keystone thumbs. They provide enough heat and flame protection but provide enough space and feel to be able to operate small details. 

To make sure the gloves you’ve purchased have enough movement flexibility, try them on and pick up some small details. The best result is if you can pick up a coin without a problem. If it’s impossible or you can’t even feel the details, the gloves are more suitable for a different kind of welding.

MIG Welding

MIG welding implies higher temperatures and a lot of splattering. Higher heat and flame resistance, as well as spark protection, are needed for MIG welding gloves.

The best material for the outer layer and reinforcements of such gloves are cow grain or cow split leather. The materials should be thick yet provide some feel. 

MIG gloves are more durable and allow your hands to be in higher temperatures for a longer time.

Stick Welding

The heaviest-duty gloves are made for stick welding. If this is the most frequent type in your job, you will need the highest heat, flame, and other damage protection. Take splatters and sparks into considerations, and choose gloves with long sleeves to protect your forearms as well.

In this case, dexterity is not a priority at all. While you will need a good grip on the instruments, there aren’t a lot of maneuvers in this type of welding.

Thicker cow split leather is a great material for the outer layer of your gloves. Several layers of lining from cotton, fleece, or wool will help increase heat protection. Aluminum foil layers are also effective.

Welding Gloves Material

Another very important factor is the material of your gloves. Usually, high-quality welding gloves are made from natural leather on the outside with a softer lining and other additional layers on the inside. 

Natural leather

Here are some basic qualities the gloves should have:

  • High quality.
    Not all leather is the same. You have to make sure the manufacturer uses high-quality leather and lining for the gloves. Reading reviews online will help a lot, as well as buyer’s guides like this one.
  • Kind of leather.
    Elkskin, deerskin, cowhide, goatskin, and pigskin are the most popular materials.
  • Sufficient lining.
    The more lining, the more heat protection you will get. However, too much of it for light applications will make your hands sweat more, which isn’t desirable. A good lining will also absorb moisture and allow your hands to breathe.
  • Good fit.
    A lot of gloves are one-size, the most suitable for standard L-sized male hands. It’s worth reading reviews by different people about the size of such gloves and the fit they provide. You need a pair that will be tight enough for the hands yet provide the ability to move all fingers.
  • Insulation.
    Well-insulated gloves will provide more protection from the environment, no matter if it’s boiling hot or freezing.

Temperature Capabilities of Welding Gloves

Another thing to consider is the temperature capabilities. The higher the number, the better you will be protected from higher temperatures.

Gloves come in different types, from 500 F to 2000 F (260 – 1093 С). Choose the temperature resistance suitable for your job.

Heat-resistance

Comfort, Size, and Maintenance as Important Choice Factors

Comfort mostly consists of the materials used, design, and fit. The materials will make it easier or more difficult to feel details.

The design will allow for various levels of flexibility of movement. And the fit will make sure your hands aren’t tightened, or the glove doesn’t fall off.

If you notice any degree of discomfort, it’s better to buy another pair of gloves that will fit.

Comfortable gloves

Size and Length of Welding Gloves

To find the right size:

The length is also quite important as it decides just how much of your hand is protected. The more sparks you get during the work, the longer sleeves you will need. There are gloves up to 21” (53,3 cm), providing the most protection.

Welding Glove Maintenance 

Different types and models of welding gloves should be washed according to the user manuals that should come in the package. If there are none, you can contact the manufacturer and find out the information.

A lot of gloves can be machine washed, but only in cold water and with a very mild detergent. It’s not recommended to machine-dry the gloves because the leather will shrink.

FAQ on Welding Gloves

Here’s some additional information about welding gloves based on the most frequently asked questions on the topic.

What Temperature Can Welding Gloves Withstand?

On average, welding gloves withstand temperatures of over 500 F (260 C). Higher temperatures are also conquerable, but for shorter periods of time.

There are models that withstand even 2000 F (1093 C) but for several seconds.

What is the Best Material for Welding Gloves?

The best material is cowhide. It’s heavy-duty, offers great heat protection, and is used in MIG and stick welding. For TIG welding, you can also get goatskin as it’s lighter and offers more flexibility.

The inner layer materials are all good if they are of high quality.

How Do I Get Metal Flakes Out of My Welding Gloves?

If the gloves are heavy-duty, you shouldn’t have to worry about it as they are cut-resistant. But if you still get a piece of metal there, using tweezers or magnets might help. 

To avoid any damage to your protective clothing, don’t roll up your sleeves and cuffs. The sparks get stuck in all kinds of folds pretty often. 

And if you need to get rid of metal parts from the magnets on your instruments, compressed air is the best option.

How Long Should Premium TIG Welding Gloves Last?

There are reports of people who have been using their TIG gloves for as long as half a year, and only the stitches got burnt. If you use your pair carefully and maintain it well, maybe you could report the same thing in half a year.

Regular welding gloves usually last up to 8 weeks.

It seems like little time, but imagine how leather shrinks from the heat. Sooner or later, leather deys so much, it will shrink and break apart.

The stitches, even Kevlar, aren’t going to last for a very long time. That’s why the price of such gloves is relatively low, even if you’re buying a premium pair.

Heat shields and/or higher temperature resistance should prolong the life of your welding gloves.

What Are the Differences Between MIG and TIG Gloves?

The main difference is the level of heavy-duty work. TIG gloves have to be:

  • Flexible;
  • Light;
  • Relatively durable;
  • Of lower heat protection.

This means you’re getting more movement of the hands and less heat protection, which is fine for TIG applications.

MIG vs TIG Gloves

MIG gloves should be:

  • Heavier;
  • With more insulation and lining;
  • More durable;
  • Of higher heat, flame, and spark resistance.

MIG applications are heavier than the TIG ones. There are fewer details, so less movement is needed. But heat protection becomes crucial in this case.

Should I Buy a Pair of Welding Sleeves?

Welding sleeves are a great part of heat protection. If you’re working in an environment where there are a lot of sparks and metal debris flying all over the place, the sleeves are a must-have.

Welding sleeves

You can also get longer gloves that will protect your forearms if there’s no urgent need to get sleeves in addition to the gloves.

The Summary

Welding gloves are an essential item in a box of a professional welder. You should buy a pair ASAP if you haven’t already, even if the applications you’ll be using them in are mild. To choose the best pair, you have to know your side. There are charts online that will help you.

The type of welding you do is also very important. The materials in the gloves determine the level of heat and fire resistance that you get.

TIG gloves have the lightest protection yet great dexterity. MIG gloves have to be better protected, but the freedom of movement isn’t that important. Stick gloves have to be heavy-duty, with the highest level of protection, and minimum movement is fine. 

Check if your gloves have cut and puncture protection. And remember about the stitches; they have to be from Kevlar or other fire-resistant threads!

Best Welding Gloves

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