Surprisingly grippy gloves for spring and autumn with the added advantage of being compatible with touchscreens.

Castelli's Prima gloves are a grippy option for spring/autumn and you can operate all kinds of touchscreen with them.

The gloves are made from Coolmax polyester with long cuffs to keep your wrists draught-free. They're fairly warm but not windproof. I'd say they're good for temperatures down to about 10°C – although that'll depend on how fast you're riding, how much you feel the cold, and so on.

The Coolmax wicks moisture away from your hands effectively although, of course, if you do start getting sweaty palms you can easily whip the gloves off and put them in your pocket.

The palms, fingers and thumb aren't cushioned but they are patterned with a silicone print that does an excellent job of keeping your hands from slipping on the bars or levers. These are surprisingly grippy, even when rain or mist has made your bar tape wet. That print left its mark on my lovely white handlebar tape during my first ride – I've got dozens of little squares on the tape now – although, to be fair, anyone using white handlebar tape at this time of year is asking for trouble. I'm going back to black.

One other interesting feature is that you get what Castelli call 'Conductive Touch Technology' on the tips of the thumb and forefinger. You know how some some touchscreens don't work when you have gloves on? They will work when you're wearing these.

If you're interested and don't already know, a resistive touchscreen like you find on some Garmin Edge computers will work when you're wearing any gloves. A capacitive touchscreen, like you might well have on your phone, won't work with most gloves, but it will work with these, which is handy if you use your phone for navigation.

The scorpion logo on the back of each hand is embroidered so it's going to last. One final thing: the washing instructions tell you to hand wash these. That might sound a bit of a pain compared to bunging them in the machine but I've just been running them under the tap after every couple of rides and they're doing fine.


Surprisingly grippy gloves for spring and autumn with the added advantage of being compatible with touchscreens.

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Castelli Prima Glove

Size tested: S/M, Black, 2 sent

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Castelli list these features:

- 100% Coolmax Yarn

- Conductive Touch Technology fingertips

- Silicone grip on palm

These provide warmth and grip but no cushioning

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Castelli have given these gloves 'Conductive Touch Technology' which is a posh way of saying that they'll work with capacitive touchscreens like you might well have on your phone.

Rate the product for quality of construction:

They're knitted gloves so there's not really a great deal to get right or wrong here. Embroidered logos usually last much longer than heat transfer logos.

Rate the product for performance:

They're fairly basic knitted gloves but the ability to operate touchscreens might be a real bonus to you.

Rate the product for durability:

The polyester is pretty tough stuff.

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
Rate the product for value:

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The long cuffs and the ability to use touchscreens.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.

Would you consider buying the product? Possibly.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 43  Height: 190cm  Weight: 75kg

I usually ride:   My best bike is:

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,


Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over 20+ years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for eight years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.


bohrhead [82 posts] 5 years ago

"good for temperatures down to about 10°C" - lol. You obviously don't live in Scotland! You certainly wouldn't get much wear out of them in spring/autumn here of that was the case.

Mat Brett [679 posts] 5 years ago

Fair point, bohrhead.

mrmo [2097 posts] 5 years ago

Looking at a set as liners to go under a shell glove. I am guessing that they are similar to the DeFeet gloves?

Leerf [8 posts] 5 years ago

I've had a pair of these for a month or so. I'd say they are fine even down to 0c although I generally don't get cold hands, (my feet were numb with cold the other day but my hands felt cosy with these on)
I've been ignoring the washing instructions and just bunging them in on a 30c wash with the rest of my kit. They seem to be doing fine, just make sure they get properly dry before wearing them.
You're not wrong about the grip, these are crazy grippy, I feel like I could climb up a building Spider-Man style in these. If anything they are too grippy, at one point I was starting to feel a bit blistery on my thumb where it was rubbing but this was after 2+ hrs on the bike.
One plus point is that they look like nice gloves when off the bike.
I haven't tried making a snowball with them yet though  3

Nick T [1298 posts] 5 years ago

Embroidered logos? It's not real Castelli if the logos don't fall off though.

BBB [504 posts] 5 years ago

Twice as good as DeFeet Dura for £12.60 ?

TheLonelyOne [396 posts] 5 years ago

I went for the Giro Bravo LF full finger glove at about £20.

I use them in the summer to stop my hands burning (sun allergy...) and they're very comfortable in 25C full sun. For winter they sufficed to about 5C before the cold really got through.

No "capacitative touch technology", but at least some thumb and palm padding which does me just fine.

matthewn5 [1405 posts] 5 years ago

I've been using Peter Storm woollen gloves with thinsulate insulation that i use over the later autumn - early spring period. Last for a couple of seasons or more and only £4.50 if you hunt around.