A Handy Fit: 2009/10 Glove Fit by Brand

October 16, 2009

The finger-nipping chill of fall and winter is upon us, which means that it will soon be time to start wearing gloves once again. For general information on finding the right gloves, you can check out my Equipped column (Hot Hands) from a few seasons back.

As I mention in the column, every manufacturer uses a different hand model for their glove designs, and fit is often surprisingly consistent across any given brand’s product line. With that in mind, I spent some time yesterday trying on this season’s new batch of gloves from the following companies: The North Face, Marmot, Black Diamond, Burton, Outdoor Research, Manzella, and Da Kine.

It’s helpful to know which brands match your hands. So here’s some quick feedback by brand based on trying on several pairs of men’s XL (my size) from each company. As a point of reference, I have big (but not oversized) palms and average finger length, with no digit being particularly long or short relative to the others.

Manzella and Marmot feature the largest palms but relatively short fingers.

Mountain Hardwear gloves have small palms and shorter fingers, but a huge thumb.

Da Kine offers small palms, shorter fingers, and a normal thumb. Very snug-fitting.

Outdoor Research offers very long fingers, especially the pinkie and thumb. Average palm size.

The North Face and Burton gloves both fit my hands, with a slightly larger palm than…

Black Diamond, which exactly matches my hand due to its more average palm. My personal go-to brand. I drool over their Guide Glove (pictures above) and use their Windweight line (right) as my around-town winter gloves.

Keep in mind that all of these notes refer to men’s gloves. Women’s gloves feature a smaller palm and longer fingers than men’s, and may fit very differently than their men’s equivalents.

Equipped” is an AMC Outdoors blog, written by Matt Heid.

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Matt Heid

Equipped blogger Matt Heid is AMC's gear guru: He loves gear and he loves using it in the field. While researching several guidebooks, including AMC's Best Backpacking in New England, he has hiked thousands of miles across New England, California, and Alaska, among other wilderness destinations. He also cycles, climbs, and surfs.