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Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves

8
£74.99

VERDICT:

8
10
Comfortable gloves that excel in genuinely challenging weather conditions, whether cold, wet or both
Touch screen-compatible
Warm and comfortable
Great weather resistance
Hard to get on and off when wet
Like most lined gloves, dexterity is limited
Weight: 
124g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves are the warmest waterproof gloves in the company's range. They're comfortable, work well against the elements and while at £74.99 they're not cheap, they're not the most expensive gloves out there for this level of weather protection.

Our best winter cycling gloves buyer's guide rounds up our top choices from just £13 to over £100.

The C5 Gore-Tex Thermo is not quite the warmest glove in the Gorewear range – that's the Gore-Tex Infinium Thermo Split Glove we're also testing. As the name suggests, that is a lobster claw design. And while Gore markets the Infinium as 'durably water-resistant', it describes the C5 as 'durably waterproof'.

Waterproof membrane

The C5's waterproofing comes courtesy of Gorewear's Gore-Tex technology, which at its core has a very thin membrane that is waterproof, windproof and breathable. This membrane has over nine billion tiny holes per square inch, each of which is 20,000 times smaller than a drop of water but, crucially, 700 times bigger than water vapour – which is what your sweat is. The idea is that rain is kept out, while your vapourised perspiration gets through, keeping you dry.

Warmth

In addition to the membrane, these gloves also get a thermal inner lining made from 100% polyester with a 100% polyester filling. On the back of the hand is a 94% polyamide, 6% elastane mix, and the foam-padded palm is finished with a 65% polyurethane, 35% polyester mix for wear-resistance. There's a soft nose wipe on the thumb as well.

2023 Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves - thumb panel.jpg

Breathability

While Gore-Tex is undeniably breathable, there is a limit to the amount of water vapour the membrane can cope with. These gloves are very warm, and remind me of Velominati's rule 21 – cold-weather gear is for cold-weather riding. In dry conditions, anything above low single digits will result in sweaty hands on all but the most relaxed rides.

Waterproof in reality?

Okay, so are these gloves really waterproof? Well, yes, at least up to a point. While the membrane does work, I found that when the fabric was saturated with water, the gloves didn't feel as breathable and my hands started to feel a little damp.

That feeling of moisture could be sweat, or it could be rain coming through. Or it could be just a feeling. Our skin doesn't have separate moisture receptors – the feeling for cold, and cold and wet is almost indistinguishable.

2023 Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves - Gore-Tex logo.jpg

This is because the other thing that happens when your gloves are saturated is that the wind chill factor increases, which makes your hands feel colder than they were. Or perhaps they're both wet and cold. Frankly, it's impossible to tell the difference.

End of digression

Yes, they are waterproof. More waterproof than other gloves I tried, though not waterproof forever. But in the real world, they kept my hands completely comfortable on a three-hour ride in steady rain in single-digit temperatures, all while riding into a stiff headwind. And yes, this was for the whole ride – thank you, British winter – as I was meeting my wife for a seaside lunch appointment and then, phew, getting a lift home.

2023 Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves - cuff.jpg

For rides in these sorts of conditions I always take a second pair of gloves – I didn't need them.

Bulk

If you want gloves this warm, there is inevitably going to be some bulk as that's how insulation works. But bulk does come with a down side – it affects dexterity. In practice this means you don't necessarily hit the correct paddle for shifting every time. But if it's a direct choice between that or cold and wet hands, I'll live with the occasional mis-shift. Rule 21, right? You're only using these when the weather demands it. Which makes you a badass, according to rule 9.

2023 Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves - palm.jpg

And while these gloves are touch screen-compatible, don't expect much more than swiping or taking a picture. If you can type any kind of message with these gloves on, you have god-like fine motor skills.

Features

The longish Velcro-adjustable cuff is just right for warmth and also for fitting under the cuff of my favourite Pactimo waterproof jacket.

2023 Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves - cuff velcro.jpg

There are reflective details along the outside of the pinky finger, which will help other road users notice you when you're indicating in the dark.

The gloves are available in neon yellow and black.

Sizing

According to GoreWear's sizing chart, my hand measurement puts me slap bang in the middle of medium. That is the size I'm reviewing here, and it fits me like a glove. I thank you, I'm here all day, etc.

In use

These are not like other winter gloves. They come into their own where other gloves are not quite warm enough any more. Everybody is different, but these are the gloves I'll reach for when I'm going for a ride around freezing point and below in dry conditions, and a few degrees warmer if it's going to be wet.

I have an old pair of Gorewear gloves that I've had for probably 20 years, and I suspect they are predecessors of these, though after a couple of decades they're not quite as waterproof as they were.

Value

While £74.99 is a lot of money, they are by no means the most expensive product in this category of deep-winter glove.

George was a big fan of the Castelli Spettacolo RoS gloves we reviewed last year, but these slimline gloves now come with a heavyweight £125 price tag.

But even those come in much cheaper than the Assos GTO Ultraz winter thermo rain gloves that cost £160.

At more wallet-friendly prices, Shaun liked the £55 Altura All Roads Waterproof Gloves, but these won't be warm enough any more when the C5s start coming into their own.

The Chiba 2nd Skin Waterproof & Windprotect Gloves are also a good option at just £36.99, and Shaun rated them, but they have no lining, so aren't as warm.

Conclusion

Gorewear's C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves are designed for slightly more extreme conditions than most winter gloves we review. As such, they are a bit bulkier, which does comes with downsides. But when the weather demands it, you'll be very happy to be wearing them as they will keep your hands comfortable. And if you're likely to be riding in those conditions on a regular basis, I think these are a sound investment.

Verdict

Comfortable gloves that excel in genuinely challenging weather conditions, whether cold, wet or both

road.cc test report

Make and model: Gorewear C5 Gore-Tex Thermo Gloves

Size tested: Large

Tell us what the product is for

This is what Gore Wear says:

Designed to protect your hands on cold and damp rides whilst still allowing use of all your gadgets.

Keeping your hands dry is an important part in staying warm on cold, wet rides but it is essential that your gloves still allow dexterity. These waterproof GORE-TEX gloves are ergonomically shaped with an adjustable cuff and silicone grip on the fingertips so they don't interfere with your bike control.

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

Gore Wear lists the following details:

GORE-TEX product: lightweight, extremely breathable, durably waterproof and windproof.

Grippy silicone print on thumbs, forefingers, and palm

Optimised for gloves-on use with touchscreen devices

Pre-shaped fingers reduce bunching of material

Velcro cuff closure at wrist

Reflective details

Weight: 120 grams

MAIN: 83% Polyamide, 17% Elastane

PALM: 60% Polyamide, 40% Polyurethane

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for fit:
 
9/10
Rate the product for sizing:
 
9/10
Rate the product for weight:
 
7/10
Rate the product for comfort:
 
9/10
Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

They are expensive compared with most other gloves we've tested – but then again, they are warmer, more breathable and more waterproof than most other gloves. That said, they're also a good deal cheaper than some of their direct competitors.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

They are excellent when it gets cold, or wet and cold.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

They're comfortable, warm and waterproof.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The protection from the elements does make them bulky.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Yes, they are at the expensive end of the spectrum when it comes to winter gloves, but they're not actually that expensive when compared with gloves designed for similar conditions.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes – if they were looking for a glove for proper cold weather riding.

Use this box to explain your overall score

These gloves are warmer and more waterproof than most, designed for the sort of conditions we don't regularly get where I live in south-west England. They are necessarily bulky to get the required level of insulation, but I feel I can't mark these gloves down for the inherent downsides that bulk causes. And while they are expensive in absolute terms, they don't compare badly against other gloves designed to excel in similar conditions.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 44  Height: 1.78m  Weight: 77kg

I usually ride: All of them!  My best bike is: Ribble Endurance SL disc

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: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, mtb, Zwift

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1 comments

Avatar
Wales56 | 6 months ago
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I agree with the review that these gloves are warm and comfortable, but I use them for riding in Scotland winters, so they don't last very long in the 'normal' bad rain/cold here.

After about 1 to 2 hours, the gloves are saturated and my fingers start to freeze. They are good for dry days, though, and I like the colour.

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