Even novice gardeners know that a good pair of gloves are an essential gardening tool. But, with all the different options, choosing a style can be overwhelming. Here’s a guide to the different kinds of garden gloves … and what they’re best used for:
Leather Gardening Gloves
These usually don’t fit snugly and can be downright bulky, but they’re durable, strong, and great for heavy lifting and pokey jobs like pruning rose bushes, dealing with wire fencing, or pushing a heavy wheelbarrow. Some extend all the way up your arms to offer extra protection (great for dealing with thorny bushes).
Cotton Gardening Gloves
Cotton gloves are an inexpensive option and are readily available in home-improvement stores and garden centers. But cotton gloves have their limitations. Breathable and lightweight, they’ll keep your hands clean while digging in the dirt and will protect against blisters while you yank weeds. But they aren’t waterproof, and won’t provide much protection against chemicals, cuts and pokes.
Disposable Gardening Gloves
These aren’t technically gardening gloves, but can be useful for handling manure and pesticides. Since they’re disposable, you can just throw them away when you’re done. Look for disposable gloves at your pharmacy, medical-supply store or grocery store.
Rubber Gardening Gloves
Working in damp soil or cold conditions? Rubber gloves are great for sealing out moisture and keeping the chill at bay, though they can be a little sweaty. Make sure you choose outdoor gloves rather than indoor cleaning gloves – the ones made specially for outdoor work are more durable.
Stretchy Gardening Gloves (Spandex or Lycra)
These are often made of cotton on the back, with a different-colored,
stretchy palm. Well-fitting, elastic, and often waterproof, these gloves are
durable, forgiving and comfortable. They sometimes even offer added sun
protection. Great when you need a flexible glove that also offers added
protection against cold or damp.