Avid golfers are no strangers to crusty gloves. You toss away your gloves at the end of the playing season, only to discover that they have become crusty, hard, and difficult to put on and grip the club with the next time you go out to play.
Here are six tips to keep golf gloves from getting crusty:
- Take off your gloves whenever you can
- Keep them dry at all times
- Keep them clean
- Consider waterproofing your leather gloves
- Store them properly
- Rotate between multiple pairs
Keeping your golf gloves from getting crusty isn’t a one-time job. You have to be diligent and consistent about caring for your gloves, and keeping them dry is the key. Read on to find out how to keep your golf gloves from getting crusty and last long.
1. Take Off Your Gloves Whenever You Can
The more you wear your golf gloves, the more there’s a buildup of sweat and organic matter.
Take them off when you’re not hitting the ball. Take them off between rounds and even better between holes.
You can carry them in your hands while moving around the golf course. However, don’t ball them up and throw them in your bag.
2. Keep Them Dry at All Times
You should keep your golf gloves dry at all times.
You use sunscreen on the exposed areas of your body when playing golf. Remember to wash your hands and remove all traces of sunscreen before wearing the gloves. The oils in your sunscreen lotion can seep into the fabric folds and seams and dampen the gloves.
Don’t throw them in your bag right after you take them off after playing. They are wet from your sweat and won’t dry inside the bag. The moisture will make them crusty.
Instead, use a soft cloth to dry it in between holes and rounds.
Here’s a nifty way to dry your gloves if you ride around the golf course.
Gently pull the windshield of the cart away from its frame. Don’t pull it all the way. Just make sure there is enough space to tuck four or five golf gloves in the space between the windshield and the cart frame.
Now place your gloves in this space. The wind and the sun will dry them as you ride around the course.
Strap the gloves to your bag if you don’t use a cart.
3. Keep Them Clean
You should always keep your golf gloves clean. A buildup of dirt, grease, body oils, and salt from your sweat causes gloves to crack and become crusty.
Besides, clean gloves also let you grip the club firmly and comfortably. Keep your gloves clean in between rounds by following these tips:
- Don’t throw your gloves on the ground if you take them off to putt.
- Don’t wipe dirt off the golf club with your gloved hand.
- Don’t drive around the course with your glove on; the steering wheel isn’t clean!
You should thoroughly clean your gloves ideally every time after you play. Following are the steps for cleaning golf gloves:
1. Gather the Cleaning Supplies
You need a small brush with soft (NOT metal) bristles, soap, and warm water.
You can use dish soap on your synthetic gloves but use only mild soap like saddle soap or Marseille soap for leather gloves. These soaps don’t strip away the natural oils of leather.
2. Scrub Away the Dirt
Smear some soap on a wet brush and gently scrub away to remove the dirt and debris on your gloves. Scrub wherever you see dirt. Keep dipping the brush in water to clear accumulated dirt before brushing the glove.
You must never wash your golf gloves in a washing machine. The vigorous cleaning action of the device will twist and bend the glove out of shape.
Whether you use synthetic or leather gloves, you must not immerse them in water.
Too much water can ruin leather gloves.
Also, if your gloves are too wet, you have to hang them up on a line to dry them. This can make them go out of shape.
3. Clean the Lining of Leather Gloves
If you use leather gloves, it likely has a cashmere, silk, or wool lining.
Turn the gloves inside out and spray water and white vinegar solution on the lining. Let the lining soak in the solution for about 20 minutes before you dab dry with a microfiber cloth.
4. Pull on Leather Gloves
After washing, pull on your leather gloves to allow them to stretch and revert to their original shape. You’ll want to do this while they are still wet, as this will make it easier for the gloves to stretch and conform to the natural shape and bends of your hand.
5. Dry Them
Air dry your gloves by placing them flat in a cool and ventilated space. Turn them inside out to ensure both sides dry thoroughly.
However, you must not place them in direct sun as the strong UV rays can crack the gloves.
Don’t hang them up on a line or wring them to dry.
Don’t use a dryer because drying too quickly can stiffen gloves and make them crusty and brittle. Ensure that the gloves are fully dry before you store them.
4. Consider Waterproofing Your Leather Gloves
Nothing ruins your golf gloves more than moisture. Leather gloves are more vulnerable to damage from moisture than synthetic ones.
Consider waterproofing your leather golf gloves. Here’s how you can waterproof your leather golf gloves:
- Clean your gloves.
- Squeeze an appropriate amount of waterproofing wax on your palm.
- Smear the wax on the gloves.
- Let the cream sit for a few minutes.
- Use a clean, damp cloth to wipe away the excess wax.
- Air dry the gloves.
Some leather treatments can stain or tint light-colored gloves. If you have white gloves, test the wax on a small area first.
Below are my top picks of waterproofing wax for leather golf gloves:
Atsko Sno-Seal Original Beeswax Waterproofing
The beeswax formula in this product “stays put” on the surface of the leather and lasts long. The wax creates a highly water-repellent coating that preserves the leather without reducing the breathability of your gloves.
Atsko Sno-Seal Original Beeswax is available on Amazon.com.
Nikwax Glove Proof Waterproofing
This waterproofing treatment can restore and increase the water-repellency of leather gloves without reducing the breathability of the material. The water-based treatment is easy to apply with the sponge-on applicator included in the package.
Nikwax Glove Proof Waterproofing is available on Amazon.com.
5. Store Them Properly
Ensure your gloves are dry on the inside and outside before storing them. Do not store them in a damp place.
You can store them in a Ziploc bag. Ensure that you remove as much air as possible before sealing the bag.
However, you can store your gloves anywhere as long as you don’t pack them with sharp objects that might graze them. It’s also wise not to keep them near liquids. A bottle of water or a tub of gel can accidentally topple over and leak.
Ensure that you store the gloves flat to prevent them from getting out of shape. Remember, they came packed flat.
6. Rotate Between Multiple Pairs
If you sweat too much, consider buying multiple pairs of gloves and rotating them between holes and rounds. This lets the gloves dry out completely before you use them again.
Rotating between golf gloves extends the lifespan of every pair because you do not wear them out.
Tiger Woods is believed to carry 16 pairs of gloves in his bag at the start of every round. However, not everyone among us can afford so many.
That’s why you must ensure your gloves don’t get crusty. Here’s how:
- Clean them with a mild soapy solution, but don’t dunk them in water.
- Keep them clean and dry.
- Buy a few extra pairs and rotate them between holes.
- Don’t wear them except when you are playing.
- Waterproof your leather gloves.