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Full-finger Vs Fingerless Tactical Gloves – The Ultimate Guide

Written by Everett Bledsoe / Fact checked by Brain Bartell

full-finger vs fingerless tactical gloves

Tactical gloves, sometimes also referred to as combat gloves, are specifically made for shooting and activities that rely on precision and agility. In essence, they protect your hands and wrists, particularly from abrasions and cuts.

Military members, first responders, hunters, gun enthusiasts, and archery competitors are some of the common users of tactical gloves. But it can be used by anyone. There is no reason you cannot own a pair of your own.

If you have decided to get on for yourself, you will have to pick between full-finger vs. fingerless tactical gloves. Keep reading to get all the information you need on this matter. By the end, you will be able to make your final decision.

We will be looking at both the similarities and the differences between full-finger and fingerless tactical gloves. For the latter, we will examine in terms of:

  • The protection provided
  • The insulation provided
  • The dexterity provided
  • The slipperiness

For the details, continue reading.

The Similarities Between Full-finger and Fingerless Tactical Gloves


1. Both are tactical gloves

Let’s start with the obvious: they are both tactical gloves. This means that they are not the same as the standard gloves you might wear for the winter or cold seasons. Tactical gloves are specifically designed and manufactured to offer not only coverage, but also solid protection, particularly against abrasions, cuts, burns, and chemicals. Moreover, they do this without having to sacrifice comfort.

Note: There are many different types of tactical gloves, depending on what they are used for and the features that they are equipped with, aside from the distinction of full-finger or fingerless.

2. Both share 3 key components

Besides the fingers, full-finger and fingerless tactical gloves share the same key components:

  • Knuckle Cover
  • Wrist Strap
  • Inner Lining

3. Both can be made of many different materials

Both can be made of a variety of materials, including leather, kevlar, neoprene, thinsulate, nylon, rubber, polyester, spandex, and nomex. 

  • Leather

This is the most common material for tactical gloves because of its water resistance, flexibility, and comfort. Cow, goat, or sheep skin can be used. Although it can be difficult to maintain and clean, it is still the preferred method among tactical glove manufacturers.

  • Kevlar

This material makes full-finger and fingerless gloves resistant to slashes. In other words, it gives the gloves the ability to shield against blades and other sharp objects. 

  • Neoprene

You might recognize this material in wetsuits. It is a great material for shielding water, but other than that, Neoprene is an excellent insulator. So in tactical gloves, no matter if they have fingers, Neoprene keeps users’ hands dry.

  • Thinsulate

Thinsulate is another material known for its insulation. At the same time, it is thin, making it an excellent material for tactical gloves.

  • Nylon

Nylon is a well-known material. You can find it in belts, boots, packs, and other tactical gear. It is popular because of its durability and flexibility. In the case of tactical gloves, it is often used with leather.

  • Rubber

Rubber is mostly used for parts of tactical gloves. Specifically, it is reserved for padding and knuckles. It can resist water and protect from high impacts. It is great at delivering high-friction grips too. 

  • Polyester

This is a breathable material, and it does not get slippery when it is wet. However, it does absorb moisture. Hence, it is usually the material of choice for less expensive tactical gloves.

  • Spandex

This material is known for its elasticity. Simply put, it is very stretchy. As a result, tactical gloves with built-in spandex tend to offer users a better fit and dexterity.

  • Nomex

This material can resist fire. So, tactical gloves designed to cater to military members, welders, and foundry workers usually use Nomex. However, it has to be paired with other materials that are more heavy-duty.

The Difference Between Full-finger and Fingerless Tactical Gloves


The key difference between full-finger and fingerless gloves lies in the, you guessed, FINGERS! The former has material covering the fingers, while the latter does not. Hence, fingerless gloves leave your fingers exposed. This, in turn, entails differences in other aspects, such as protection, insulation, dexterity, and slipperiness.

1. Protection

Since fingerless tactical gloves do not provide full coverage, you cannot enjoy optimal protection of scrapes, cuts, burns, and harmful chemicals. That being said, if you are searching for a pair of gloves that guarantee hand protection from environmental and elemental hazards, you may want to reconsider fingerless gloves.

Full-finger gloves will offer more protection, especially against injury by falling objects. Contacting sharp objects will also be less dangerous with your fingers fully gloved. Moreover, there are no openings for potential debris to enter your gloves, which can cause discomfort and interfere with your performance. You will surely appreciate this when you find yourself in a windstorm, under a downpour, or around the mud.

2. Insulation

Fingerless gloves leave your fingers exposed. So, they cannot ensure that your fingers stay warm. If you live or intend to use tactical gloves in very cold temperatures, full-finger gloves are better than fingerless ones.

Nonetheless, compared to ordinary gloves, fingerless tactical gloves still offer more warmth. So, the answer to “Do fingerless gloves keep you warm” is yes. It is just not as great as full-fingered gloves in doing so.

If you want the dexterity and non-slip qualities of fingerless gloves and the only thing that holds you back from getting fingerless gloves is the insulation, you can consider fingerless gloves with flaps. This is a sub type of fingerless gloves. This is what it looks like:

When it is not too cold and you can go without the added warmth, flip the flap up, and when you do need to keep your fingers warm, flip the flap down. Just make sure you invest in high-quality ones with a button or velcro fastener to keep your flap from flipping by itself.

There are also long fingerless gloves that can provide you with extra warmth around and upward from the wrist. Here is a photo of one for you to get a better idea:

3. Dexterity

Fingerless gloves enable you to freely move your fingers. In other words, they provide maximum finger dexterity. As such, they are great at the firing range. You can feel your weapon and ammo, which is especially critical when you are moving in drills or reloading. So, if you are purchasing gloves for shooting or handling arms, then fingerless gloves are ideal.

You can easily find fingerless tactical shooting gloves online and offline, and once you start the search you will realize that there are a lot of fingerless shooting gloves options to choose from.

The finger dexterity that fingerless gloves offer is also ideal when you are working with delicate tools and machinery or on details and handling small parts.

4. Slipperiness 

Fingerless gloves leave your fingers out in the open. Thus, there is space for air to enter, keeping your palms and fingers from sweating and trapping moisture. As a result, there is a lower chance of slipping. You will surely feel more comfortable too. When you take off your gloves, your hands will not be dripping and icky.


1. Are thicker gloves better, regardless of whether they are fingerless or finger-full?

Yes and no; the gloves that you choose should be thick enough to safeguard your hands. But they should also be thin to offer you adequate mobility and grip control. The perfect pair of gloves is balanced in the middle. Therefore, when you are browsing options, do not hesitate to try them on and assess them first hand (pun intended!) 

2. How much should I pay for a pair of fingerless or full-finger tactical gloves?

Fingerless and full-finger gloves come at all prices. There are ones sold for as little as 8 dollars and those around the 80 dollars range. The price variations depend on many factors like the brand, material, features, etc. You should be prepared to shell out money but remember that they should not cost you your whole fortune. If you are on a budget, consider doing a price check between physical stores and online stores.

3. How can I get a pair of fingerless or full-finger tactical gloves that fit?

To make sure that your gloves are well-fitting, consider the following:

  • Give more weight to height than width because tactical gloves tend to stretch over time, anyways.
  • Looseness is worse than tightness. Loose gloves make handling gear very challenging, and they can even slip off. So, it is better to have a too-tight pair than a too-loose one.
  • Nevertheless, your movement should not be restricted. Bulky and stiff tactical gloves are no good.


Now that you have all the fingerless gloves vs. full gloves comparison, you can assess your needs and wants to make a final decision. Full-Finger vs. Fingerless Tactical Gloves? Let us know which you choose down below. We always read all the comments! So, feel free to leave any questions or thoughts as well. And please help us share this with other readers. Thank you!

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