At just shy of 20 quid, Altura's Club Mitts are priced at the entry level end of the market, but you get some decent features for your money, including a memory foam palm and a microfibre sweat-wipe panel that runs alongside the length of the thumb.
New for 2020 – and with graphics in eye-catching colours to team up with the Club jersey – the Club Mitts offer much the same tech as Altura's slightly cheaper Airstreams, but with perforations across the palm and fingers for added breathability.
According to the Altura glove size guide I was bang on size small, and the unisex glove provided a brilliant fit with its stretchy polyester/elastane upper and all the coverage you'd want for a day in the saddle. There was a tad more creasing across the upper due to a little extra material – both width and lengthways – than with other female-specific smalls I've tested (despite the advertised anti-crease fabric) so it's possible they won't allow for stretching over time – so consider sizing down if you're not on the cusp.
Overall, though, the Clubs serve up a satisfyingly snug fit, certainly aided by the hook and loop (aka Velcro) adjustable closure positioned in just the right spot to sit comfortably without any rubbing in action.
The 'easy removal' finger pull tabs, which never go amiss for tired or chilly fingers, are a handy addition. Their placement makes them marginally more awkward to remove than when the tab's in between fingers (such as on Lusso's Summer ones), but as long as you're not being timed it's all good – and this is nitpicking really, because they're speedy to get on, and speedy to get off.
I tested these gloves during a period of renewed love for my cross bike and the hottest May on record, and can attest to just how comfy they are in sweaty conditions over uneven terrain, and while gripping the brakes far more than is required or justified. The Altura Dry technology which, Altura says, is engineered to move excess moisture away from the skin, wicks well as advertised. My hands were kept pretty sweat-free – as was my brow thanks to the microfibre sweat-wipe panel that runs alongside the length of the thumb, a nifty little feature.
A small array of perforations across the palm and fingers is the added breathability feature that elevates these mitts from Altura's most basic, and although there could be more, it's better than none.
A road mitt bugbear of mine is pinching between the fingers which tends to strike on and after descents, but the Club Mitts kept me discomfort-free – likely thanks to the hardy fastening which keeps them in position even with opposing forces.
Adding to this overall feel of comfort are 'strategically-placed' memory foam pads on the heel of the thumb and upper palm. The pads are indeed in the right spot, though they're quite meaty. To this end these aren't minimal gloves – they feel a bit 'belt and braces' on comfort – but their placement and squishiness did the job; they felt good on the tops, hoods and drops. It's worth noting that this feature is a tech-bracket down from the gel in the Altura ProGel Mitt, but the resulting comfort appears similar and, as far as wear and tear goes, there was no sign of deterioration or compressing after a good few wears and washes.
Although these Clubs aren't the cheapest we've tested – Galibier's Chronos are less than £15 – they're a great price for what you get, and on a par with Lusso's Summer gloves and Decathlon's Van Rysel RoadR 900s (although its Triban RR900s are £14.99). The ProGels I mentioned above are £26.99, and you can spend a whole lot more from the likes of Supacaz and Rapha.
Overall, the Altura Club mitts work as intended, performing well and delivering comfort – all without being eye-wateringly expensive – and for this, they truly deliver.
Super-comfy, high-wicking mitts with an impressive selection of features for an entry-level price
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Altura Club Mitts
Size tested: Small
Tell us what the product is for
Altura says: 'A comfortable and ergonomic mitt with an eye-catching club graphic. Team performance mitts with strapless cuff construction and easy removal finger pull tabs.'
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Altura list the technical features as:
- High-wicking fabric
- Hook and Loop cuff adjustment
- Memory foam palm
- Easy removal finger pull tabs
- Microfibre sweat wipe panel
- Increased perforated palm
These gloves feel well made, with a secure Velcro tab that keeps them in the right position while aiding personal fit. Finish is neat, though there was a little fraying to the fingers after a few washes. So it gets an overall 'good' on quality.
As advertised, these gloves do wick superbly well – moisture disappears almost as soon as it arrives, faster than other pairs I have tested. They also provide a comfortable ride with no rubbing to the palm nor pinching to the fingers.
The construction of these gloves makes for a durable feel – they're robust and the closure is very secure. Overall durability after a few wears and washes is promising – though there is a small amount of fraying to the finger seams.
These are unisex gloves, and I think you can tell. There is a little bit more material in both length and width than with female-specific gloves I have tested. The result was a little wrinkling to the upper.
The size guide worked well for me.
They're light but still feel quite meaty/robust. You know they're there!
Comfort is a high point on these gloves – the memory foam and Velcro closure work together to deliver a super-protected feel.
Very good selection of features for the cost.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Stick them in the machine at 30°C max, and they wash up well – although there is a tiny bit of fraying to the fingers.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They're easy to get on and off, comfy across multiple positions on the bike, they didn't pinch me and they kept me sweaty-palms free. So overall, a win.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The snug closure and the eye-catching colour.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The upper is a bit more wrinkly than I'd like.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
At £19.99 they're on the cheaper side, and on a par with gloves we have tested from Decathlon and Lusso, both of which performed well too.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes – if they matched my kit.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
They deliver on comfort, and aren't expensive either. Overall they're very good.
About the tester
I usually ride: My Scott Foil My best bike is: Oldie but the goldie, CAAD 8
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, mtb, Triathlon, Audax