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Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers review: is this £1 solution effective in tackling the chill?

A popular disposable choice, six pairs of Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers will set you back just £6 - effectively around £1 per wear. But can they actually keep your hands warm for up to ten hours? MNHQ writer Lucy put them to the test to find out.

By Lucy Cotterill | Last updated Feb 6, 2024

Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers

Price on writing: £6 for six pairs | Buy now from Amazon

There’s nothing worse than cold hands when the temperatures drop. Whether you’re bracing yourself for the school run in cold weather, spectating your child’s Sunday morning football sessions, or simply working from home during winter, the best hand warmers are a great way to remove that unwelcome chill and help your hands feel more comfortable. 

While they’re not the most sustainable choice, Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers are a popular choice amongst Mumsnet users, with over 1,700 five-star reviews on Amazon praising them for their simplicity and instant heat generation. Can they really provide up to ten hours of warmth, however? I put them to the test to find out. Using them over the course of a week both inside and outside the home, I evaluated their warmth generation, longevity, ease of use, and overall value for money. Read on for my full verdict.

Feeling the chill? We’ve also hunted down the best women’s slippers and warmest hot water bottle according to Mumsnetters.

What we like
  • Small, lightweight and non-bulky 

  • Long-lasting heat 

  • Air-activated and super simple to use 

  • Heat up quickly

  • Suitable for use inside gloves 

  • Generates a comfortable temperature 

What we don't like
  • Single-use 

  • Less sustainable than electric reusable hand warmers 

  • Could work out costly if buying regularly  

Our verdict

Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers in use
  • Warmth: 4/5 

  • Longevity: 4/5 

  • Ease of use: 5/5 

  • Value for money: 3/5 

Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers couldn’t be easier to use. Heating up gradually from the moment I took them out of the packet, these small sachets created a really noticeable warmth within just a few minutes. Thin and lightweight enough to pop inside my gloves without feeling bulky or restrictive, they created an impressive yet comfortable heat across my entire palm. 

They stayed warm for around nine hours, which although isn’t quite as much as the ‘up to ten hours’ advertised, was surprisingly long-lasting for something with such a low price tag. Retailing at just £1 per pair they’re an affordable choice, however, the obvious downside is their single-use design, which works out less cost-effective when compared with an electric reusable hand warmer. 

What are Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers?

These hand warmers are disposable, air-activated sachets that can be popped inside your gloves to remove the chill when working from home, travelling or walking in cold weather conditions.

Heating up almost as soon as they are removed from the packet, these ultra-thin, lightweight sachets claim to provide up to ten hours of comforting heat. While relatively affordable at around £1 per pair, they are a single-use hand warmer, so are not the most sustainable choice for those seeking a more regular solution for cold hands. 

Related: The best electric blankets to help you save on your energy bills

How easy are Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers to use?

Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers in a glove

They are incredibly easy to use. Unlike some hand warmers or heated gloves that have different settings to master or need charging before use, using them is as simple as removing them from their outer packaging.

Activated by air, they started to heat up almost straight away. I found they became noticeably warm in just over a minute without any further action needed from me. While the warmth felt pleasant when I held the sachet between my hands, it felt even more comforting when I popped it inside my gloves, creating a more substantial warmth that seemed to radiate across my palms.

Due to their small size and lightweight nature, the Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers were really discreet and unnoticeable when used inside my fingerless gloves. I was able to continue typing when working from home without them feeling bulky or restricting my movement.

Related: The best heated gilets for working from home

How warm are the Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers?

There’s only one temperature level, but the warmth is consistent and pleasant - not so unbearably hot that I felt like my hands were burning, but noticeable enough to feel some significant benefits.

Holding my hands together, it almost felt like I had them cupped around a warm cup of coffee, which was a great comfort on colder days. 

How long do the Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers stay hot?

Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers

The product packaging claims that these hand warmers stay hot for ‘up to ten hours’.

Whilst my experience was slightly less than their maximum (the temperature started to wear off after nine hours), I was still really impressed. The warmth generated certainly stayed through the vast majority of my day. It was reassuring to know that they could provide significant longevity if I wanted to wear them in more extreme conditions such as camping or hiking.

Related: The best heated throw for chilly days

Price: are the Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers worth it?

A pack of six pairs of Hot Hands Hand Warmers retails at around £6, working out at £1 per pair. For more occasional use, I think this is a real bargain, as they provide substantial warmth benefits with a really low, budget-friendly price tag – much like the brand’s similar disposable foot warmers

If you were hoping to use them every day, however, the cost could soon add up quite significantly. For regular use, you may be better off spending more on an electric hand warmer such as the HotRox or Ocoopa that can be repeatedly recharged and reused as required.

How we tested

Selection of the hand warmers our tester Lucy tried out

I tested the Hot Hands Instant Hand Warmers in Birmingham across a cold week in winter. During testing, I carefully rated them on their warmth, the longevity of the heat, their ease of use, and their overall value for money.

  • Tested across a week in early February

  • Used both indoors when working from home and outdoors during the daily school run 

  • Cross-compared with other hand warmers I've tested

Related: The best draught excluders and thermal curtains for insulating your home

About the author

Lucy Cotterill is a mum of two and a Content Writer at Mumsnet, specialising in baby, child and lifestyle product reviews and round-ups. Having written product reviews on her own blog Real Mum Reviews since 2012, Lucy loves to research and explore the pros and cons of products, scrutinising reviews and consumer feedback to help people make confident purchases.  

Between two daily school runs on foot and working from home in her garden office, Lucy knows a thing or two about effective ways to beat the chill in winter. This year, she’s on a mission to make parents’ lives easier (and warmer) and has put several hand warmers through their paces, assessing their performance to find the best option for Mumsnetters. She’s also spent extensive time researching and writing articles on the best winter coats for women, the softest blanket hoodies, and the warmest thermal underwear, to name but a few, so she knows what features make for a cosy buy for winter weather.

About Mumsnet Reviews

All Mumsnet product reviews are written by real people after weeks of research and testing. We work hard to provide honest and independent advice you can trust. Sometimes, we earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. However, we never allow this to influence our coverage.

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