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Who doesn’t love the fresh smell of a brand new pair of boxing gloves?
Whether you’re doing boxing or any other combat sport like Muay Thai or Kickboxing, you’re going to need a pair of gloves to protect your hands and sparring partner.
However, most high-quality gloves are made of leather, especially gloves from brands such as Winning, Rival, Reyes, and other reputable brands. That doesn’t mean you can’t find high-quality gloves from synthetic fibers, but leather remains the material of choice due to its sturdy and long-lasting qualities.
In this blog post, we’ve compiled a sweet list of vegan-friendly gloves — but keep in mind that the brands mentioned still produce leather-made gloves as well.
Top 5 Vegan Boxing Gloves
Everlast Pro Style Training Gloves
These Everlast gloves are beginner-friendly gloves that reveal impressive durability, with some users reporting that the gloves have lasted them between two and three years.
This is possible thanks to its premium synthetic leather and solid construction, making these gloves one of the highest-quality, yet affordable boxing gloves on the market.
On top of that, its full mesh palm provides proper ventilation, allowing your hands to remain comfortable and dry throughout training sessions.
Due to the velcro closures, these gloves are quick to adjust, slip-on, and remove making it much more convenient in-between training sessions. These gloves are also equipped with the Thumblok technology, which essentially prevents your thumbs from breaking, and also protects your opponent from punches that might land incorrectly.
In addition, the Everfresh patented technology makes the interior of these gloves antimicrobial. This prevents germ growth and also prevents bad odor from taking over the gloves as a result of multiple training sessions. The structure of the glove also features a natural curvature that fits most hands quite well, making it super comfortable.
Venum Elite Boxing Gloves
Venum has been around for a while, and akin to Everlast, they’ve been providing beginners and intermediate boxing practitioners with good-quality gloves at very affordable prices.
Let’s start with the Skintex leather material, a smooth, high-grade synthetic leather that is assembled and hand-sewn in Thailand. Based on the quality and life expectancy, Venom has priced their gloves rather fairly,
These gloves also have a fairly flexible and resistant PU envelope which is a blend of multi-density foams and reinforced seams, which enables them to optimally absorb impact.
If you can’t stand stinking gloves, Venom has also included a thermal regulation pad along the interior to cut down on sweat and keep your hands ventilated during training sessions. These gloves are also rather large, so if you have a smaller frame, it may feel weird to wear the gloves.
While not as affordable as Everlast gloves, the Venom gloves are available in numerous colors and patterns, giving you more than one way to stand out at the gym.
Lastly, some users suggest the gloves can take a while to break-in despite the size.
Everlast Elite ProStyle Training Gloves
This is an upgraded version of the regular Pro Style Gloves and is also aimed at beginners taking their first steps in the boxing gym.
The palms are made from a breathable mesh that allows the air to circulate, which prevents your hands from overheating during a training session.
Akin to the Pro Style Gloves, this one also shares the same impressive durability, given the premium synthetic leather and solid construction. Also, it makes the gloves easy to clean as the surface of the material prevents dirt or blood from getting glued.
On the inside of the gloves, you can also find the Everfresh technology that prevents odors and keeps the gloves germ-free. Also, the gloves feature a velcro closure, which is a more convenient closure system, especially if you’re mostly hitting the sandbag.
The Elite Pro Style Gloves have an updated Evershield design, providing the user with advanced wrist protection, something the original Pro Style Gloves are lacking.
Ringside Apex Boxing Gloves
The Ringside Apex gloves use IMF technology, a technology that supposedly provides users with superior cushioning and impact absorption.
However, while the gloves are highly regarded among users, they haven’t noticed any difference between this technology and standard foam gloves. In any case, the gloves do offer an excellent full hook and loop closure that provides proper stability when punching.
On top of that, the Ringside Apex gloves also have an efficient Stay-Dri technology that maintains the inside of the gloves cool by letting the air circulate. This further promotes stability and comfort during your training sessions.
As far as pricing goes, the Ringside Apex Gloves are probably the most affordable on the list, but that may come at a cost. A few users suggest that the gloves are prone to wear and tear with highly-intensive heavy bag workouts, so keep that in mind.
Again, that might be entirely due to the quality of the PU leather and construction.
Everlast Elite Hook & Loop Training Gloves
The Elite Training Gloves were designed with a new anatomically shell, allowing you to more naturally create a fist inside the glove, which you can notice due to the curvature of the thumb.
In terms of overall feel, the gloves are comfortable and well-ventilated, but the quality of the synthetic leather and the stitching may be on the cheaper end.
Plus, the gloves do take some time to break-in because the padding is dense, making this glove a bit of a hard glove as well, which is not indicated for sparring, often because the gloves may also form folds near the thumb which leads to cuts.
The velcro strap is also a bit short, which means you may find it a bit more difficult to remove the straps with gloves on. Also, depending on the quality of the velcro, over time, if you don’t take care of it, it may start to develop some lint which may lead to it getting loose in training.
That being said, the gloves feel amazing with every punch giving out the sound and feel of a flush punch. Though, compared to other gloves, this one is more on the expensive side.
What To Consider Before Buying Boxing Gloves
One important thing to consider is that most high-quality boxing gloves have an all-leather exterior with some of them being handmade. Top-notch boxers often rely on brands such as Winning, Casanova, or Rival, but these are gloves that cost upwards of $150.
However, they also offer outstanding foam padding, wrist support, and can last YEARS upon YEARS before you need a new pair. Unfortunately, these gloves are made from real leather and are made in countries where the manufacturing process is taken very seriously. (i.e: Mexico)
That being said, it doesn’t necessarily mean every synthetically made glove is garbage, it’s just that the material is not prone to last as long as leather. Synthetic materials have other benefits like breathability, while the comfort and padding are heavily dependant on the actual construction.
How Are You Planning To Use The Gloves?
Before you rush out to buy a new pair of gloves, you need to reflect on what way and how often you will be using them.
Put simply, your choice of gloves will weigh heavily on what type of training you do the most. For example, do you spar a lot? Do you spend your training sessions hitting the bag?
Based on your training routine, you can better assess what type of gloves serve you best.
Types Of Boxing Gloves
Bag gloves: These gloves are probably the most common type of gloves, and they have a more dense structure, as they’re especially padded to give you adequate cushioning for each strike. Hand injuries are common than most people think, and if you spend a lifetime hitting the sandbag, you’ll notice that your hands become more sensitive over time — which is why you must think about their protection.
Sparring gloves: These gloves are designed to protect your opponent in sparring matches but they’re usually less dense and vary between 16-18oz.
Competition gloves: These are made for actual boxing matches, and they typically weigh between 8oz and 12oz depending on the rules. They can be either lace-up or velcro gloves. Lace-up gloves provide a more customized fit but they’re generally less convenient and easier to slide into or remove, unlike gloves with velcro.
Material: As we’ve mentioned earlier, boxing gloves are either made from leather or man-made materials like vinyl. Generally, leather-made gloves last longer because the material is essentially more sturdy. On the other hand, while synthetically-made gloves may not be known for their durability, they have other benefits such as breathability and comfort.
Fit: Choosing the perfect fitting gloves depends on several different factors such as the size of the glove and its weight. Another thing to consider is that everyone has different hands, so akin to shoes, you have to determine which gloves suit you better by first testing a couple. Good fitting gloves generally latch on to your wrists and give your hands stability to prevent any snapping upon contact.
Closure system: The closure systems are generally two: laces or velcro. On one hand, laces tend to provide you with a tight and secure fit. However, they’re a bit less convenient for removal. Velcro is doable when you’re hitting the bag or sparring… but in actual matches, laces are often recommended for better protection and fit.
Size: Boxing gloves are available in different sizes, but there’s generally a standard size/weight for males and females. If you’re confused, 16oz is the standard for male boxers and 14oz is the standard for female boxers. Soft gloves are for sparring, while dense gloves are recommended for bag work. Lace-up gloves for sparring or fights (more support) and velcro for hitting the bag (more convenient upon removal).
Before you decide to depart with your hard-earned money, consider some of the things we’ve mentioned earlier — like testing out gloves before ordering online. Generally, and especially if you’re just starting, you can’t go wrong with some of the gloves and brands we’ve mentioned.
These are brands that have been around for a while in the boxing/MMA world, so they’ve gained the trust of consumers (including professional boxers or fighters) based on their quality.
Hopefully, this list will help you choose a pair of gloves that you can feel good about, without actually having to sacrifice an animal for its skin.