Every golfer learning the basics of the sport for the first time when he/she hears a piece of sage golfing advice that goes a little something like this: “You have to grip the club like a baby bird . . . Strong enough to keep hold of it, but never so strong you crush it.” That common piece of instruction tells the player that tension is the enemy of a good golf swing, especially in the hands, where golf club and human meet.
The best golf glove is essential for a player at any level of development. Early on, while learning the game, a golfer’s tight, white-knuckled grip betrays nerves and a lack of confidence. With such a stranglehold on the club, blisters can form over the course of hitting a bucket of golf balls. The more advanced player relies on a golf glove’s soft, deft stickiness to keep more relaxed hands securely in touch.
This list points to several options ideal for a player’s needs under different playing conditions at various price points. Whether a beginner or veteran, playing in sun or rain at one of the best courses in the world, a golfer will grab the right glove here.
1. Bionic StableGrip
Most of the best golf gloves are somewhat delicate, offering a tight leather “second skin” that allows transmission of feel through to the hand. The Bionic StableGrip provides that same sensitivity, but it bulks up in key spots with extra leather thanks to its patented “anatomical pad relief system.” The result is a glove that feels more substantial on the hand and provides a more reassuring grip.
2. Wilson Staff
A classic, reliable choice in the golf glove world, the Wilson Staff opts for a microfiber synthetic material in place of the typical leather. The result is a glove that offers snug comfort, deft touch and toughness at significant savings compared to other options. Its well-proven design throws in a ball marker button as a traditional flair.
3. Srixon Cabretta Leather Glove
For the uninitiated, Cabretta Leather comes from the skin of sheep found in Brazil and South Africa. Known for its fine grain and softness, it’s a top-line choice for gloves when such garments need maximum dexterity, Srixon puts that special leather to use in this well-made option. The designers add Lycra inserts across the knuckles for extra flexibility and comfort.
4. Mizuno Elite
Designed to maintain its soft feel through multiple uses with fine leather and layered stitching, the Mizuno Elite works in patches of flex mesh material to add extra flexibility and breathability — reducing sweat inside the glove. Using a bit less leather with the mesh filling in, the Elite is a more affordable option from a trusted golf brand.
5. Callaway Dawn Patrol
This Callaway entry runs away with the prize for the coolest name, but it’s also an elegant golf glove. Feeling almost like a surgical implement on the hand, the Dawn Patrol fits like that second skin a golfer needs to protect the hand. Meanwhile, perforations reduce moisture and vent the gloves. The Opti Fit Adjustable Closure and Stretch Binding Cuff keep the fit tight, but comfortable.
6. MacWet Micromesh Golf Rain Gloves
Short of lightning, dedicated golfers stay out on the course in wet conditions. In the rain, even the best golf gloves can breakdown or become slippery — making rain-specific gloves necessary. The MacWet Micromesh Golf Rain Gloves are sold in pairs as both hands need dry grip in wet conditions. The MacWet Aquatec material contains polyamide, polyurethane and elastane to maintain grip in light or heavy rain.
7. Under Armour Iso-Chill
Designed with hot weather play in mind, the Under Armour Iso-Chill opts for a blend of n Polyester and Elastane. That mix of fabrics manages that usual Under Armour performance of wicking sweat away and drying quickly. Employing UA Tour Cool materials, the Iso-Chill design works to pull heat away from the skin, while micro-perforations aid in ventilation.
8. FootJoy Men’s WinterSof Golf Gloves
Winter play poses a challenge for the golf glove designer. In those parts of the world where winter brings cold, but little enough snow to keep courses open, gloves need to keep a player’s hands warm while still remaining thin enough to transmit feel from the club. The FootJoy WinterSof use “Sure-Grip Autosuede” for extra insulation while keeping a soft feel. They’re sold in pairs and the thicker material makes the gloves windproof.
9. HJ Original Half Finger Golf Glove
You’ll often see golfers removing their gloves before putting to gain a little extra dexterity. A fingerless glove can make that step unnecessary as it protects the hand during full swings while leaving the digits free to tickle the putter. Strangely, very few manufacturers make a fingerless golf glove for men. The design is reserved for women looking to preserve their manicures. HJ overcomes that tradition with a half finger glove for the guys.
10. Mizuno Tour
The higher-end golf glove in the Mizuno family, the Tour edition is made for the best amongst us. Its “Fitbridge” design allows for a fully contoured fit from the palm to the back of the hand — an area within the golf grip where the club turns and rubs against the glove. Finally, a double-stitched rim adds more support to thumb seams that can strain after multiple swings.