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Best gloves and mittens for kids: warm and waterproof picks for babies and toddlers

Keep small hands warm and dry this winter with our pick of the best gloves and mittens that will actually stay on.

By Carol Linfield | Last updated Dec 18, 2023

Girl wearing hat, coat and gloves

Along with wellies, raincoats and winter hats, gloves are an essential part of your little one's winter wardrobe. You'll want a pair that'll keep hands warm and dry and that are comfortable enough to wear without protest. But you'll also want to ensure that they're tough enough for busy hands to work on the important job of exploring the great outdoors.

But which material is best for cosiness and durability? And do gloves or mittens come out on top? And are there ANY gloves that actually stay on toddler fingers?

We’ve got you and those little mitts covered with our roundup of the best kids’ gloves and mittens to get your hands on this winter. We’ve also got some handy tips to help coax your children off the sofa.

Here are the best kids' gloves and mittens to buy.

1. Best overall kids gloves: Trespass Kids Ruri II Snow Gloves

Trespass kids gloves

Price £12 | Buy now from Amazon

"I've always put my daughter in Trespass" - Katieviney

"Random tip: If your children get warm sweaty hands use baby powder to help get gloves back on. You can buy travel size" - Pineappleunder 

These lightweight padded kids’ gloves will keep little hands toasty in the colder months. They have some great features, including an adjustable wrist band to banish those unwanted drafts and clips to keep them paired when not in use (to save your sanity by preventing a frantic search for that missing glove). They’re water resistant and will protect against dampness. A knitted inner provides an extra layer of cosiness. They’re available in black, azalea pink and electric blue. These gloves aren’t as bulky as a standard snow glove so they're easier to get on and off.

Key specs

  • Material: Lightly padded polyamide

  • Size: 2-4, 5-6, 8-10 years

2. Best budget gloves for kids: Trespass Kids Lala Fleece Glove

Trespass fleece gloves

Price £5 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’re looking for a pair of gloves that will do the job of keeping small hands warm and survive daily playground battles, then opt for these simple thermal gloves from Trespass. Suitable for children aged two to 10, this fleece-lined pair get top marks for their super soft fabric. You shouldn’t encounter any resistance either – they’ll feel like cosying up under a blanket and the kids will appreciate the fitted cuffs that work hard to keep any cold weather drafts at bay.

Key specs

  • Material: Polyester

  • Size: 2-10 years

3. Best gloves for snow: Kids’ Warm and Waterproof Ski Mittens

Decathlon ski mittens for kids

Price: £18 | Buy now from Decathlon

"Decathlon Kids ski mittens. Super warm according to my 5 yr old" - Pancakeflipper 

"I second the Decathlon ones. They have them as gloves or mittens and they are completely waterproof and warm. Good price too" - clux73

"Don’t skimp on the gloves. Cold wet hands make for a miserable skiing experience. Also, a good idea to buy two pairs" - nononsense

If there’s one outdoor gear brand that Mumsnetters rave about, it’s Decathlon. When you’re hitting the slopes with the kids, it’s important to not make the fatal error of skimping on the gloves. Cold and uncomfortable children are miserable children, so you need to take all precautions. These mittens fit the bill – they’re available in two fluorescent colours and are designed with the young skier in mind. The longer cuffs provide a brilliant seal, making them easy to put on. They’re waterproof and their wide cuff will sit over a ski jacket nicely, while also preventing snow and cold air from getting up the sleeves or into the glove. They’ll also survive any snow ball fight. Mumsnetters have already tried and tested these on the mountains and that’s more than good enough for us.

Key specs

  • Material: Polyester

  • Size range: 4-12 years

4. Best waterproof gloves for kids: Muddy Puddles Waterproof Gloves

Muddy Puddles waterproof kids gloves

Price: £20 | Buy now from Muddy Puddles

"Muddy puddles do waterproofs and mittens etc all year round. Can't recommend them enough" - moominsmummy

"I wear some MuddyPuddles stuff myself - thermals, snow boots - and it is pretty good. I wouldn't bother with the cheaper gloves though; they weren't properly waterproof" - fridayschild

These hugely popular and extremely waterproof gloves from Muddy Puddles are perfect for your kid's next big adventure and will keep small hands warm and protected in the great outdoors. They’re super waterproof to 500mm and will keep mitts dry even on the wettest of days. The gloves feature reflective details for improved visibility in the darker, winter months. These thermals boast an extra inner membrane layer that works hard to keep hands dry and cosy, plus reinforced palms mean the kids have a firm grip for all that climbing. We also love that you can throw them straight into the washing machine after a muddy day. The sizes suit all ages and they get the Mumsnet seal of approval.

Key specs

  • Material: Waterproof to 5000mm with extra inner membrane

  • Size range: 2-12 years

5. Best fleece mittens for kids: Plain Polarfleece mittens with thumb

JoJoMaman Polarfleece mittens

Price £8 | Buy now from Jo Maman Bébé

"JoJo maman Bebe mitts. Polar fleece, so warm and water resistant and easy to get on and off" - Needark

"I second the JoJo polar fleece recommendation. My 4 yr old wears them for school and they’re great" - crumble82

"Mittens are warmer and far, far easier to get on a 2 year old!" - HuntedForest

Sometimes when you’re rushing out the door, trying to guide little fingers into gloves can be a masive faff, that’s where these polarfleece mittens come in. They come highly recommended on the Mumsnet forums for their ease in getting on and off. The super cosy fleece material will keep the kids feeling all snug and warm, plus the clips attach to the coat, meaning no more lost mittens. They also have strong eco credentials and are made from two recycled plastic bottles. This pair is water repellent so it will offer some level of protection against dampness (not so much the pouring rain). These are better for smaller kids and are available in blue and pink.

Key specs

  • Material: polarfleece

  • Size range: 1-2; 3-6 years

6. Best fingerless gloves for kids: Baby Toddler Knitted Convertible Fingerless Gloves Cartoon Warm Flip Top Gloves

Fingerless gloves

Price: £8 | Buy now from Amazon

"I favour the fingerless gloves with a flip-up mitten top" - EmilySpinach

"You can sew a glove at each end of a metre of string/ribbon, then thread it through the sleeves of the coat leaving the gloves hanging out" - BraveMerida

These adorable, knitted monkey fingerless gloves make our hearts sing and will make your child smile. They come in 12 attractive designs and kids are going to be excited to show them off everywhere they go. These fingerless gloves don’t just have the wow factor, they’re really useful. In milder weather they provide a little extra warmth but don't come with the restrictions of a full glove, so little ones can get on with the important job of exploring. This pair is made from acrylic fibres, making them extra cosy and a great choice if your child has sensitive skin. The material also gives the gloves a good stretch, meaning that one size does fit all (if your child is aged 3-8), so you don’t have to worry about working out which size to buy. They look good, feel good and their high-heat insulating ability will keep small hands and wrists protected from the elements.

Key specs

  • Material: Acrylic

  • Size: 3-8 years

7. Best gloves for toddlers: Dublin Magic Children’s Pimple Grip Gloves - One Size

Dublin Magic gloves

Price: £3 | Buy now from Amazon

"For forest school, ski gloves/waterproof mitts are usually too padded to be useful. The gloves need to be as thin as possible so they 'use' they fingers as normally as possible" - Shmithecat2 

"Look at riding gloves, the grippy palms give an element of waterproofing and they can still use their fingers freely as needed around horses. Bulky ski gloves on teeny fingers wouldn't allow for picking things up or much use of hands" - liveforsummer

You can’t go wrong with a pair of magic gloves – they’re a great pick for children of nursery age, or those at forest school because they won’t hinder the children’s ability to grip and fully explore the great outdoors. These pairs are available in seven fun colours – the pink-multicoloured option is our favourite. Mumsnetters recommend choosing gloves with a grip and this toasty pair resemble the ‘grip’ socks some of us favour over the slipper. Online reviews are positive in terms of reliability, sturdiness, warmth and practicality so this pair is a great allrounder.

Key specs

  • Material: Cotton with inner layer fleece

  • Size: Child one size

8. Best baby mittens with a string: Playshoes Unisex Baby Fleece Baby Mittens Gloves

Playshoes kids gloves

Price: £10 | Buy now from Amazon

"Agree mittens with clips or string/elastic threaded through the sleeves. Look for those labelled thinsulate. Maybe buy a spare set for when they are soggy or lost" - LIZS

These super cute baby mittens on a string are rated highly for being a brilliant choice for curious little hands. The mittens' velcro opening fastening makes them easy to get on and off. And if your child is forever losing their mittens, the string feeds through their coat and keeps everything in place. You can choose between classic blue, pink and blue marine and the polyester material will provide extra cosiness for those stints in the pram. They can be thrown in the machine regularly and are tough enough to survive the grubby baby months.

Key specs

  • Material: Polyester

  • Size: 0-6; 6-12 months

9. Best touchscreen gloves for kids: Apex Youth Etip Gloves

The North Face Youth Apex gloves

Price £35 | Buy now from the North Face

Touchscreen gloves often appear on the Mumsnet forums as present suggestions for teens. This durable pair from the North Face may be the most expensive pick on the list, but it's a worthy investment. The Etip functionality and grippy silicone palm ensures the wearer can tap away and maintain a strong grip. You can bung them in the washing machine at 30°C and the synthetic insulation will work hard to reduce heat loss and keep busy fingers warm. These gloves are great quality and made to last.

Key specs

  • Material: Recycled polyester

  • Sizes: S/M/L

Are mittens better than gloves?

Mittens are a better choice for younger children. They are far easier to get on and off, which can save you precious minutes on stressy school runs. They keep little fingers together, which will help to insulate small hands and keep the warmth in. As children grow and use their hands to grip onto bikes, scooters and bags, gloves become the better option as they offer the flexibility kids need to use their fingers.

How to keep toddlers’ gloves on

“You don't, it is an impossible task” exclaims one Mumsnetter. We’ve all been there – gloves and socks become incredibly difficult to keep track of. One solution is to invest in some handy clips to attach them to coats (though little escape artists may pull them off). You can also put the gloves on before the coat so they are snuggly in place under the coat rather than over. You should also go for a pair your child will actually want to wear. If they are old enough, get them involved in the decision. If your child likes them, they’ll be more inclined to keep them on.

What material is best for kids’ gloves?

The most important aspect for this winter staple is to have an additional inner layer. Often made from fleece, cotton or thinsulate, a base layer will retain heat and provide warmth during the colder months. Little hands can get incredibly cold when wet so opt for a water-resistant outer layer (often polyester) as soon as your child gets old enough to agree to wear them. These gloves are often slightly bulkier than the snuggly fitting options for younger kids.

What are the best gloves to buy for kids?

The Trespass Kids Ruri II Snow Gloves are a trusty pair of gloves. They are reliable, sturdy, practical and tough enough to let smaller hands get on with tackling monkey bars and swings. We're fans of the knitted inner and adjustable wrist band that keep drafts away from the skin. They’re lightly padded too to allow flexibility, but they're still breathable. They’re cosy, cool and available for a pretty neat price too.

How we chose our recommendations

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which gloves and mittens for kids were recommended and had bought. We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which gloves and mittens for kids had been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across websites, and what customer reviews said about them. Having collated all that information, we then narrowed our list down to the best gloves and mittens for kids on the market.

Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.