I’ve talked about women’s gardening gloves before so you know that I’m not easily swayed by a pretty design, woman-focused marketing, or a good price. But I have to say that the new Ethel gardening gloves are a very welcome addition to my gardening ‘attire’ – AND they’re pretty, built for women, and well-priced.
I know many gardeners prefer to get their hands dirty, to dig bare-handed and feel the soil between their fingers. But, after several unanticipated and most unpleasant encounters with broken glass, rusty nails, and a wasp nest, I am forever committed to gardening with gloves on! Which means that I have spent years in a quest for the most comfortable, durable, flexible, and well-priced women’s gardening gloves available. I’ve tried everything – from cow hide to cotton, nitrile, synthetic ‘leather’, and everything in-between. I’ve found some good gloves, even some that I’ve strongly recommended. But, until now, I hadn’t found that perfect combination of comfort, fit, style and price.
Then Ethel came into my life. I picked up a pair of very stylish, red houndstooth-patterned gloves in February at New England Grows, started using them in early March, and haven’t worn any other gloves since. Here’s why I like them so much:
- They FIT!! Perfectly! The gloves were built specifically to fit a woman’s hand – and it shows.
- They’re flexible. The synthetic leather palm and fingertips are soft and pliable, making it easy to pick thing up and hold delicate plants without crushing things.
- Did I already say they’re flexible? The two-way stretch fabric on the back of the gloves doesn’t wrinkle or sag. It stays put against your hand without feeling too tight or clammy, it breathes well, and you hardly know you’re wearing a glove.
- The cuff comes up high enough to prevent dirt from falling into your gloves, and the elasticized grip finishes the job – without cutting off circulation to your hands.
- Just throw them in the washing machine, hang them to dry, and they look (and feel) just like new.
- There’s a very handy reinforced tab on the inside of the wrist to help you pull on (and off) your gloves.
- There are lots of cool designs and colors – not your typical floral cotton or hot pink “Woman’s Leather Gloves”.
- They’re reasonably priced (only $20) – considering that I lose gloves on a regular basis (I think there’s a Glove Gremlin hiding in my gardening shed), I wouldn’t want to spend much more than that on a pair of gloves.
Now, to be fair, I do have to say that I will be using some of my other gloves for more heavy-duty gardening work. The Ethel gardening gloves are sturdy and well-built but the leather palms and fingertips are thinner than on some other work gloves and I’ve already had a few nasty thorn pricks from my roses while wearing these gloves. I also wouldn’t use them for working with rocks, or anything else with a rough surface – they might hold up to the rough treatment but I’d rather risk some of my other gloves instead of beating up the Ethels.
Overall, these are the most comfortable, well-designed gardening gloves I’ve ever worn. Since New England Grows, I’ve bought three more pair to be sure that I never run out!
Disclaimer: I was given a free pair of Ethel gloves by the sales rep at NE Grows. However, there was no expectation that I would write a review, let alone that I would write a positive one. The thoughts expressed here are my honest opinion of what I think is an exceptional pair of woman’s gardening gloves.
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