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Can You Wash Golf Gloves? (How To Make Your Gloves Last Longer)

If you’re a golf addict like me – but still an average Joe with a 9 to 5 job – then the constant purchase of balls, tees but also golf gloves no doubt wears you down.

Yes, the big purchases like a new driver or golf bag hurt, but at least you know you’ll get a decade or more out of them (unless you have a real obsession with new gear).

This is why I find the requirement to regularly buy new accessories week-in, week-out, just to be able to keep your bag stocked enough to play, really painful.

There are ways to cut down costs by buying tees in bulk, lake balls or even a cheaper brand or model, but the one thing I feel like I am forever forking out for is new golf gloves.

Frustratingly, going cheap on budget gloves just means less comfort and a shorter lifespan – and allowing sweat and moisture to dry inside them after a round will further hurt their longevity.

So, then, it brings us to an important question when considering ways to prolong the lifespan of your golf gloves…

Can golf gloves be washed?

Golf gloves can be washed in the washing machine on a cool, gentle cycle to ensure they don’t change in size. However, using the washing machine will mean the glove becomes waterlogged and will require drying over a period of time. This can cause the glove to go crusty or lose its shape, so be wary of washing a glove in a washing machine and expecting it to maintain its original form and quality.

If your glove is excessively dirty and you really don’t want to purchase a new one, washing your glove in a washing machine can be a viable option.

Just be prepared for the result on the other end to be a little dry and crusty, and it may take a few rounds for you to bring the glove back to its prior shape and texture.

My advice would be to use a damp cloth to clean your glove while on your hand, and if it is too dirty to clean it this way, you might just need to come to terms with buying a new one.

How can I clean a golf glove?

To clean a golf glove, the least intrusive method is to rub worn and dirty spots with a damp towel until they become cleaner. It is important to do this with cold water and while the glove is on your hand, in order to maintain its shape. By using this method, it is less likely the glove will get dry and crusty as it won’t become damp or waterlogged.

The key to ensuring a glove stays in decent shape when being cleaned is to avoid getting it too wet.

If it becomes properly soaked, you’ll have to leave it on a washing line or hanging up to dry, and the process of evaporation will dry the glove right out.

After doing this, it can be hard to shape it back to its original form, leaving you with dry, wrinkled fingers that don’t feel great around the club.

By leaving the glove on your hand while you clean it with a damp cloth and minimal water, it won’t dry out and should maintain the original shape and texture.

Golf Clubs & Tips : How to Clean a Golf Glove

Why do golf gloves get hard?

Golf gloves can go hard when they have become excessively wet and dry out too quickly or without adequate air flow. As water evaporates from the pores of the glove, it can leave it feeling quite crusted and rigid. When your glove gets wet it should be aired out slowly to help it dry, then stored in a zip lock back so that it keeps a little moisture to remain supple.

I am certainly guilty of poor glove care, letting it get sopping wet on a drizzly day then chucking it in my golf bag where it stays for a week.

The hot environment in the back of my car where the golf bag resides dries it out quickly, leaving nicely crusted and wrinkled fingers.

You may find that cheaper synthetic or hybrid material gloves are especially prone to drying out, so despite the heftier price tag being a turn off for some, it could be well worth going with a leather option like the Srixon Cabretta glove.

They might not last quite as long, but they’ll maintain their shape and texture longer than other gloves that may not rip and tear, but can become annoyingly hardened and dirty more quickly.

How long do golf gloves last?

A golf glove can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on how often you play and how well you care for it. If you buy a high-quality glove and care for it well, you can probably get 15 or so rounds of use from it, not including range sessions and practice. If you only purchase low-quality gloves and care for them poorly, you might find they start to wear and become misshaped after only 7 or 8 rounds.

The best way to determine which glove lasts the longest for you is to experiment with a few different options until you find one you like.

A couple years ago I used to skimp out on golf gloves, buying $20 synthetic Wilson Staff versions that did the job well but would wear out quite quickly, in as little as 10 rounds.

By wear out, I mean ripped and torn too, completely unusable, not just a little crusty.

Personally, I’ve found FootJoy to have the longest lasting golf gloves, but any glove coming in at a slightly higher price point and made of leather should hold its quality for a decent period of time.

How do I stop my golf glove from smelling?

To stop a golf glove from smelling, try using a simple foot odour spray to alleviate the problem. Since many of these sprays are designed for leather shoes, they’ll do the job perfectly for leather golf gloves. If you’re looking for a cheaper option, baking soda can also be a great deodoriser.

You want to ensure you apply only a thin film of deodoriser though, as leather golf gloves won’t appreciate too much moisture.

Otherwise, some baking soda tossed around your glove in a sealed bag overnight will help absorb any odour before you dust it off in the morning.

Are leather golf gloves better?

Generally leather golf gloves are going to be of higher quality and provide a better fit to your hand. However, they do come with a higher price tag, so a full, genuine leather glove will be pricier than those that combine leather with other materials. You need to be mindful of how much you sweat too, as some full leather gloves may not provide the amount of ventilation you need to keep your hands dry.

The TaylorMade RBZ Leather Golf Glove is a great example of an all-leather glove that is of a high quality, but also boasts a high price tag.

Now, it is super durable and may be a better option than cheaper gloves that might not feel as good on the hand, but I have my concerns over whether the amount of ventilation provided will be sufficient for a profuse sweater.

The more you sweat, the more moisture your glove will absorb, and this can lead to it crusting up when it dries, leading to you needing a new one.

Alternatively, the TaylorMade Men’s Stratus All Leather Glove provides far greater ventilation around the knuckles, perfect for someone who gets sweaty hands throughout a round.

Overall, I’d recommend going a full leather glove for durability and quality, but be sure to experiment with style and ventilation, depending on how much you sweat.

Can you wash leather golf gloves?

Yes, you can wash leather golf gloves, but this should be done by hand and not in the washing machine. Leather is not designed to get overly wet and can be damaged if thrown in a delicate machine cycle. It’s recommended you clean leather golf gloves with a damp cloth and allow them to dry on your hand, if possible, to retain their shape.

If the process of washing your glove, or general wear and tear, leaves it looking dry, using some leather conditioner will help it stay supple and malleable.

If you do wash your glove and it does get a little wetter than you might have liked, it is important to air dry it rather than with heat, as drying your glove out too quickly can remove necessary moisture from the leather, leaving it crusted and dry.

Do golfers ever wear two gloves?

Yes, golfers can wear two gloves to overcome a range of issues such as wet weather, blistering or excessive cold. Phil Mickelson is one well-known pro who has used dual gloves in the wet, and ultimately, despite wearing a glove on your non-dominant hand being the norm, it is perfectly reasonable to wear two if this is what feels best for you.

There’s nothing worse than trying to play golf in the wet, and once your glove and shafts get wet there’s really no way to dry them out on the course.

This is why opting for a dual pair of wet weather gloves like the FootJoy RainGrip Wet Weather Gloves will be massively helpful if you often play in wet weather.

Their special design will keep your hands warm too, ensuring you retain the level of feel required to play well in the toughest of conditions.

If you have general blistering issues and find that both your dominant and non-dominant hands are constantly ground away by swing after swing, simply finding a style of glove you like and buying both left and right options makes complete sense.

You’ll find all sorts of weird glove preferences out there – some people don’t even use them at all – so don’t be shy to go with an uncommon solution: whatever helps your game is best.

If anyone questions your use of two gloves, simply remind them of Phil Mickelson’s runner-up effort in the 2016 Open where he wore two all-weather gloves.

What golf gloves do the pros use?

Golf pros will usually use high-quality leather gloves from the brand they are sponsored by. At the upper price point of leather gloves, there aren’t a huge differences; it moreso comes down to the player’s preference and sponsorship deals as to which brand and style they will wear.

The one luxury the pros have over us mere mortals is the fact that money spent on golf gear is no issue to them, with sponsors supplying them with an endless stream of balls, clubs and gloves just to help advertise their gear.

Every single round will see a golf pro crack open a new glove, perhaps even switching on the turn from front nine to back nine. What a luxury!

Final message

While golf gloves are an often overlooked accessory for the average player, finding a long-lasting, comfortable fit will make your club feel better in your hand and instill you with confidence.

Gloves are definitely a nuisance given the frequency with which you have to buy them, but by experimenting with a few different styles and exercising a basic level of care, you could get more rounds out of your gloves than ever before, helping your hip pocket along the way.

Lewis Carhart
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