You know that phrase “don’t let them see you sweat?” While the context for this sentiment probably didn’t have anything to do with a barbell, it does now. If you’re about to have a giant lifting day, the last thing you need is sweaty palms getting in the way. Sure, workouts cause sweat and chances are, no matter what your workout routine is, your hands do some work as you move. However, the potential PR sabotage that can come from slick palms trying to grip a barbell is a nightmare that keeps even the meatiest of meatheads awake at night. Don’t let the barbell see you sweat — use one of the best weightlifting chalk brands instead.
Chalk is a weightlifter, climber and champion gripper’s best friend because it not only rids your hands of moisture but the powder gives your skin a gritty surface to grip with. You’ll be able to feel the difference in both your hands’ capabilities as well as your own personal confidence knowing your muscles will be able to get the job done without a pool of sweat on your palm giving way mid-lift. If you’ve got serious weightlifting aspirations or need to nail that V-7 at the climbing gym, use one of the following weightlifting chalk brands to give yourself the boost you need to get there.
1. Z ATHLETIC Chalk Ball for Weightlifting
This 2oz. chalk ball from Z ATHLETIC is filled with chalk and the perfect size for portability and getting started using chalk in your weightlifting routine. The chalk ball is not as messy as other methods of application and the chalk from Z ATHLETIC is high-quality. It’s made of 100% pure magnesium carbonate that absorbs moisture adequately without caking or excessive clumping. It’s fragrance-free, pigment-free and contains nothing irritating or gimmicky.
2. Gibson Athletic Premium Block Gym Chalk
This gym chalk comes in the form of blocks, eight 2oz ones to be exact, so you’ll have enough to last you through many upcoming training sessions. This pound of chalk is designed to reduce moisture on your hands so you can gain better traction and prevent slips from happening with the barbell. The chalk is lab-tested magnesium carbonate and each block comes individually-wrapped, convenient for storage.
3. SPRI Chalk Block 8-Pack
BEST FOR STOCKING UP
This cheap deal on weightlifting chalk is great for stocking up for winter, or anytime you want to buy chalk in bulk. These blocks come in packs of four or eight, and are pigment-free, pure magnesium carbonate so you can trust the quality despite the lower price. You can break these blocks apart easily to refill a chalk bag or ball, and rely on the formula to help you grip during a whole variety of lifting activities.
4. 321 STRONG Refillable Chalk Ball
This drawstring-tied chalk ball is super easy to carry with you to and from the gym (when we can go to gyms again) and is made of a premium-grade cotton sock for less mess. The gym chalk is fine powdered, non-toxic and pigment-free. Keep your hands dry and your grip solid as this chalk increases your potential friction dramatically. It also comes in a resealable zip top bag that limits the mess even further. Furthermore, at 2.3oz this chalk ball contains more chalk than the average container sold so you won’t run out as quickly.
5. Gladiator Gym Gear Battle Armor Loose Chalk Powder
BEST REFILLABLE OPTION
This gym chalk powder comes in a 14 oz. bag with a refillable chalk ball that you can use when on the go. Protect your hands from blisters or painful injury by carrying the ball into your gym session or bringing the whole bag to share with others. The pure magnesium carbonate chalk has no fillers and is completely non-toxic. It also contains no artificial colors, oil, scents or other non-essentials. You’ll have nothing weighing you down except for the weight, which you’ll be able to grip effortlessly with this high-quality loose chalk.
6. SPRI Liquid Chalk
BEST LIQUID OPTION
Liquid chalk works a lot like hand sanitizer, as it dries on your hands in a matter of seconds but performs the same function as chalk in terms of grip and function. It’s made of magnesium carbonate, rosin, and ethyl alcohol solvent. It keeps your hands dry, prevents blisters as well as slipping. It works on its own as the sole base layer you have on your hands but can also be layered with powdered chalk to amplify the effects of both. This liquid chalk from SPRI comes with a carabiner attached to it so you can easily hook it onto your belt or keys while working out.
7. Togear Liquid Chalk Variety Pack
BEST VARIETY PACK
This liquid chalk from Togear comes with a small travel sized bottle, a medium-sized bottle and a larger bottle for keeping in storage in case you need a refill. The variety gives you options for where you store and need each bottle. Liquid chalk is less messy than powder chalk and these convenient bottles make the process even more seamless. This formula is strong, tacky, sticky and will stay that way throughout your workout. It’s been lab-tested for the safety of its ingredients and its ability to increase friction between your hand and whatever it’s lifting. It also doesn’t contain harsh drying agents, heavy metals or other cheap ingredients you’ll find in other blends.
8. Primo Chalk Bucket
BEST FOR GYMS
Weightlifting or climbing gyms, whenever they can stay open safely again, should purchase a communal chalk bucket like this one for members to use or refill their individual chalk balls with. This formula lasts about twice as long as plain magnesium carbonate chalk and is sustainably sourced. It contains essential oils to prevent your hands from drying out too much and cracking, it also improves grip so dramatically it’s used in NFL and NCAA locker rooms. It’s also a naturally antibacterial formula so it makes communal weightlifting equipment safer for all users. This bucket comes in 1, 5 and 6 pound sizes so you can choose which volume works best for you.
9. Tourna Tennis Rosin
BEST CHALK ALTERNATIVE
If chalk isn’t your thing rosin powder is another great grip assistant for weightlifters, climbers, tennis players, gymnasts and other professional grippers. It’s another drying powder that’s non-toxic and made in the US. This powder comes in a convenient shaker bottle that dispenses the exact amount of rosin you need each time, and will dry out your hands instantly. Afterwards you can close the secure lid and place the bottle back in your bag with no worry of a mess.
10. Competition-Grade Spider Tack
Alright, this is for the real hard-o’s out there. Spider Tack is a chalk alternative that’s more sticky than drying, and definitely helps you grip the bar better. The problem is then you’ve got a paste-like substance on your hands. However, if you’re trying to PR and don’t want to take any chances — I recommend this stuff. It’s not meant to be used every session, but when you really want to grip and not let anything slip — Spider Tack is the way to go.