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Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of HarcourtHealth.com and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.

Whether you ride your motorcycle year-round or not, one thing remains true: winter is coming.

While you’re likely not going to ride your bike in the snow or icy conditions, winter in some places can still mean a drop in temperature, making for a cooler ride with much colder winds.

Your motorcycle might be winterized and ready for what’s ahead, but are your hands ready? Do you have proper motorcycle gloves for the colder months? Here’s what you should look for in winter motorcycle gloves before the cold comes in.

Comfort

Protecting your hands from the snow and cold weather is important, but so is comfort. After all, uncomfortable gloves can make your ride less satisfying and even affect the way you drive. Your hands and the way you hold onto the handlebars are an integral part of riding a bike. You should always feel safe and in control while riding, and if you’re uncomfortable, that will get in the way.

Protection

If the conditions are really bad, then it’s probably not a good idea to ride your motorcycle. However, it might just be really cold, and whether you decide to ride your bike in frigid temperatures or not comes down to you.

Good winter gloves provide proper protection, which could mean waterproof gloves if there’s precipitation or heated gloves if the weather is unbearable for your hands. Deciding on some of these issues can, of course, come down to where you live. If you live in Los Angeles, then gloves that specialize in precipitation might not be necessary, but heated gloves could be once the temperature drops.

Ease of use

Ease of use plays off of comfort. But taking it a step further: if your gloves are too bulky, then it’s going to be tougher to ride your bike. Too much insulation (which usually means too much bulk) can make it harder to feel and use the controls. Everyone is different, so a bulky glove for one rider could be the perfect glove for another.

Preference

What are the best winter motorcycle gloves? Well, it’s all about preference. While some gloves are better suited for precipitation and others for cold temperatures, the best gloves come down to the rider, although the quality of the gloves play a role.

You might prefer leather gloves, no matter what time of the year it is. However, if precipitation is an issue, then you might prefer waterproof gloves to keep your hands and the handlebar dry. The key is figuring out what you like. While a less bulky glove could mean less insulation and therefore won’t protect you as well in cold weather, a bulky glove might affect the way you drive too much, making them unfit for driving.

A good strategy is to test out as many gloves as possible and put them on while holding onto handlebars. This will ensure that the controls are easy to press and you have a good grip on the handlebar. Good winter gloves will, of course, protect you in the winter, but comfort, ease of use, and preference play key roles as well.

While quality motorcycle gloves are essential for winter riders (as well as other winter gear), there are other things riders should keep in mind during this time of year as well. For example, riders should drive slower and keep in mind that they might have less traction in colder conditions. And stay warm out there, besides just your hands.