Review: Handup Gloves
“I don’t always wear gloves, but when I do I prefer Handup Gloves.”
I wear gloves on the bike for three reasons: when it’s cold, when I need grip, and when I think I might crash. So if you see me on the road bike on a warm day with gloves, be careful.
Handup Gloves started as a small company whose marketing was to make a better glove for the bike so you don’t mess up that hand up. Hand ups are a part of cyclocross that I just love, and I have seen lots of good stuff from money, to bacon, to beers, and donuts. I still have the dollar bill I got from my first cyclocross race. So, how do you keep someone from dropping a frothing can of suds? You simply add some nice grip. Despite their silly name and backstory, these gloves perform wonderfully.
Handup’s regular line of gloves comes in both full and short fingered designs, aka finger-less. I have the full fingered version, and I think mine are the Prism pattern Ride Dirty model. The back features a really nice looking colorway and the palms feature a catchphrase that forms when you lock your hands together. From a purely visual standpoint they are on point. Love the look.
That mesh back material really performs well in moderate temps. It is cool enough to ward off the cold down to 40-45 degrees, maybe. It breathes enough to be okay into the 70’s. I don’t normally wear gloves when it’s hot, but when I break out the mountain bike, I do!The mesh is pretty rugged, and I cannot really see any tears or pilling yet. I get the impression that they would help in a crash to save a little skin.
The palm and that goofy printing provide lots of tacky grip. The silicone lettering gives me good grip and some minimal padding that keeps my hands on the bars of my MTB or cyclocross rig. The laser cut holes provide additional ventilation, and they seem so far to be durable. Sometimes things like that fray or get bigger over time, but these are solidly made. The Clarino palm material is nice and light. I have hockey skates lined with this new age skin, and it is a strong and lasting performer. I am sure that these gloves are built to last. Clarino is also pretty good with not retaining moisture so it limits stench.
“You know what they say about small gloves...small hands.”
The sizing of the gloves is pretty similar to most industry standards. If you use a large Giro glove, I bet these would work fine. I found the Handups to be a little short at the wrist. I notice it when I wear my Withings Steel watch, but it isn’t a big deal. I like the company’s approach to use an elastic wrist band in place of a more traditional Velcro strap. The gloves stay on just fine, and they provide good mobility because they are not cinched tightly around your wrist.
The last feature that really works well for me is the built in sweat wipe (I don’t know the technical name!). When I get a little warm, this built in snot rag helps me wipe sweat or even the occasional booger away. Forehead with the right hand and nose with the left. That way...well, you see what I’m getting at. Back to the gloves, this part of the gloves works well and is highly absorbent for its thin composition. Unlike several other gloves I own, from Bontrager and Pearl Izumi for example, this part of the glove has not gotten all crusty and nasty. Maybe it’s only a matter of time?
I would give these gloves a big thumbs up. They are light, grippy, and fun to wear. I have only had them since the spring, but they really still look as new. I plan to check out the fingerless version soon, and can see lots more of these in my future. I’m just not sure which style yet.
Handup Gloves are available in many styles and sizes at your local shop. I bought mine at Campus Wheelworks where the crew is pretty much all wearing these to tear up the roads, cx courses, and trails. Retail price is $28 for the full fingered style, and slightly less for the fingerless model.