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Heated Gloves Vs Hand Warmer Packets: What Works Best?

| Updated Jan 15, 2024

Heated gloves vs hand warmer packets: which works better? Which is more convenient? Here's what you need to know…

Jennifer has a circulation condition called Raynaud's disease, which causes her fingers and toes to feel numb and cold in response to cold temperatures or stress. When her extremities are exposed to cold, the smaller arteries that supply blood to her skin narrow, limiting blood circulation.

Without heat, prolonged exposure could cause her fingers to develop frostbite.

We're outside a lot in the wintertime, camping, hiking, doing video shoots, exploring, and taking Bo to the dog park. She has been relying on chemically activated heating packets to keep her fingers warm.

So, we got a pair of electric gloves and decided to put it to the test on a morning outing with Bo when the temperature was well below freezing. Which worked best – the electric gloves or the heating packets? What about rechargeable hand warmers?

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Hand Warmer Packets

hand warmer

Hot Hands are the most popular hand warmer packets on the market. These individual-use packets provide up to 10 hours of heat. And they work great!

Jennifer activates them before a week, and tucks one in each glove and each shoe. Then her fingers and toes are as happy as can be.

You can also keep them in your pockets, including your coat pockets and your pant pockets to keep your bottom warm.

Preview Product Price
HotHands Hand Warmers HotHands Hand Warmers $21.18Amazon Prime

These have been a go-to for Jennifer (and countless other campers) for YEARS! But now, electric gloves are gaining popularity.

Heated Gloves for Winter Camping

Heated Gloves Vs Hand Warmer Packets: What Works Best? 1

Heated gloves, also known as electric gloves, range in price from about $45-$140. Most are ski gloves that are waterproof and a bit bulky. But you can also find heated gloves that are more like normal gloves.

These heated gloves run off small rechargeable battery packs. These battery packs attach to each glove and get tucked into a little pocket on the wrist.

Electric gloves have heated wires running down the fingers and at the back of the hands. Sounds like a great way to keep your hands toasty, right?

Well, we put them to the test…

Putting Heated Gloves to the Test

If anyone would be in the market for a pair of those electric gloves that we see being advertised everywhere these days, it would be Jennifer. So, she got a pair of  electric gloves.

Electric gloves retail from $40 to $100 a pair, depending on where you buy them.  The heated gloves that Jennifer has notes that they can be worn as gloves only or as a liner for mittens. Because they were advertised as distributing even heat to all fingers, she wore them as regular gloves.

If Jennifer had worn the electric gloves as liners, under a pair of mittens, they would undoubtedly have been much warmer. But wearing gloves and mittens would have been much more uncomfortable and bulkier than just sticking a heating packet inside her regular gloves.

We're sure that many people are happy with electric gloves. But Jennifer's experience was that they didn't perform as well as the inexpensive Hot Hands packets she has been using.

What About Rechargeable Hand Warmers?

Heated Gloves Vs Hand Warmer Packets: What Works Best? 2

Rechargeable hand warmers are a great option for people who keep their HotHands packets in their pockets. You simply hold them in your pockets when your hands are cold.

I suppose you can shove them into the palm of your gloves, but I'm not sure how well that would work.

These aren't a great option for Jenn, because she specifically needs to warm her fingers and toes due to her health condition. So, she needs something like HotHands that easily fit into her gloves and boots.

Preview Product Price
Rechargeable Hand Warmers Rechargeable Hand Warmers $19.99Amazon Prime

What have you found that works for you?

Let us know in the comments! And once you get your hands warm, maybe you need to look at these next…

7 Best Heated Camping Chairs to Keep Warm This Winter

7 Best Heated Camping Chairs to Keep Warm This Winter

Now that you have options to keep your hands and feet warm, what about the rest of your body?

Whether you're going winter camping or you get chilled while camping year-round, the following heated camping chairs will make all the difference. They'll keep you warm and comfortable outdoors while helping to relax your muscles after a day of adventuring.

We've carefully selected a variety of the best heated camping chairs for different preferences. We've got heated reclining chairs, rocking chairs, double chairs, and more… Keep reading

We Are Huge Fans of Winter Camping!

Heated Gloves Vs Hand Warmer Packets: What Works Best? 3

Now we say that knowing many people are not. Indeed, you need to actually enjoy snow and cold. But we know there are thousands of RVers out there who just need a little coaxing and some tips to get out there and have fun in their RVs year-round.

So that’s why we wrote The Winter RV Camping Guide.

In this 36-page ebook – (NOT a Print book) we’ll walk you through what you need to do before you leave home to get your rig winter-ready, and we’ll cover what to do when setting up camp.

Last update on 2024-05-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Mike Wendland

Published on 2024-01-10

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

3 Responses to “Heated Gloves Vs Hand Warmer Packets: What Works Best?”

February 04, 2019at12:05 pm, Elaine Jordan said:

I’m having circulation issues in my right hand, mainly at night….but drs day it is not what you have
Anyway, I have been using the USB powdered fingerless mittens for less than $10 on amazon….but what I do is remove the little square that is the warmer and put it in my regular gloves, I thread the wires thru my coat using a battery.
It might appeal to you in cost and environmental impact
As I have one hand only, I use two squares in one glove, but you could buy two sets, using two batteries


December 17, 2018at9:45 am, Susan Nelson said:

I have had Raynaud’s since I was 33 (now 67). The hand warmers & toe warmers work great! I used tobuy them by the box, but watch the expiration dates because they don’t work as well towards that date & after. My rheumatologist had also told me to use mittens because fingers will stay warmer next to each other than separated. My nose also gets cold!


December 12, 2018at1:35 am, Peggy Doulos said:

Jennifer, if you wear handknit wool mittens rather than gloves your hands will stay warmer. Try to find some that are knit with a pattern, that way they are double thickness. If you find some with wool and angora, they are even warmer. Then add the chemical packs, also if still needed. There are some packs like those chemical ones that can be reused but I don’t remember there name. I grew up in the UP in a knitting family. We never had cold hands since we always had lots of wool handknit mittens. In fact, sometimes I have to take my mittens off since my hands are too hot! My husband has Ranauds so I know how difficult it can be to keep fingers warm. I spin and knit so it is easier for me to make exactly what is needed to keep warm in cold weather. If you know someone who knits, they could make you some that will be much better than anything you can buy just make sure to use all wool or wool, angora mix.


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