How To Clean Hockey Gloves: Complete Guide

Hockey gloves are one of the most important pieces of equipment for a hockey player.

Not only do they protect your hands from being injured by sticks and pucks, but they also help you grip your stick and keep your hands warm in cold weather. However, hockey gloves can get pretty dirty and smelly after a few uses.

If not cleaned properly, the dirt and bacteria can lead to skin infections or other problems. That’s why it’s important to clean your hockey gloves on a regular basis – preferably after every use.

Thankfully, cleaning hockey gloves is not as difficult as it may seem, and in this post, we’re going to walk you through everything you need to know about how to clean hockey gloves so that you don’t damage them. Let’s get started. 

Why you Should Wash Your Hockey Gloves?

It’s no secret that hockey is a tough sport. Players are constantly battling for the puck and trying to hit the net – all while avoiding being checked by the opposing team.

In all of this physicality, it’s easy for players to get sweaty and for their gloves to get dirty. But what many players don’t realize is that keeping their gloves clean can actually help them on the ice.

Clean gloves will help in a number of ways. They’ll help you grip your stick better and give you a better feel for the puck. They’ll help keep your hands warm in cold weather and help prevent skin infections.

Finally, clean hockey gloves can also help you enhance your performance on the ice.

When you’re sweating, it’s difficult to focus on the game. However, if your gloves are clean and dry, you’ll be able to concentrate better on the task at hand. This can help you make smarter decisions on the ice and, ultimately, help your team win.

As you can see, there are many benefits to cleaning your hockey gloves. It could make all the difference in your performance out on the rink!

Ways to Wash Your Gloves

There are two main ways that you can wash your gloves – by hand or in the washing machine. We recommend washing them by hand, as this will be the gentlest on the material and will help to prolong the life of your gloves.

But the convenience of throwing all your gear in the washing machine after a game is tempting, so we’ve included instructions on how to do that as well. Let’s be honest, who’s going to wash all the gear by hand after every use?

Washing by Hand

The best way to wash your gloves is to pop them in a sink or bath with all your other gear and some hot water.

Using a mild detergent, give them a good scrub and leave them to soak for 30-60 minutes. Some people like to use something with a bit more bite and so will add a 1/2 cup of vinegar or a cleaning product to the water. Just make sure that whatever you use is safe for the material of your gloves.

Something like this product from Vapor Fresh should do the trick.

Vapor Fresh Natural Sports Deodorizing Spray for Gym and Fitness Equipment - Boxing Glove Deodorizer, Yoga Mat Cleaner...
  • PERFECT FOR ALL SPORTS EQUIPMENT - Amazing at cleaning and deodorizing football, hockey, lacrosse and soccer pads; yoga mats; boxing gloves; running shoes; gym bags; and all other sports equipment.
  • GREAT FOR ALL GYM AND FITNESS EQUIPMENT - A multipurpose sports cleaning and deodorizing spray that works great to clean spin bikes, treadmills and other cardio equipment. Also great for gym benches, dumbbells, kettlebells, barbells and other gym equipment.
  • 100% NATURAL ACTIVE INGREDIENTS, NON-IRRITATING & NON-TOXIC - Naturally-derived freshener formulated from a proprietary blend of essential oils and cleaning agents. Completely free of artificial fragrances, ammonia or other harsh chemicals that can irritate your skin, ruin your equipment or harm the environment
Vapor Fresh Natural Sports Cleaning and Deodorizing Spray for Hockey Gear
  • PERFECT FOR ALL SPORTS EQUIPMENT – Amazing at cleaning and deodorizing football, hockey, lacrosse…
  • GREAT FOR ALL GYM AND FITNESS EQUIPMENT – A multipurpose sports cleaning and deodorizing spray that…
  • 100% NATURAL ACTIVE INGREDIENTS, NON-IRRITATING & NON-TOXIC – Naturally-derived freshener formulated…

After they’ve soaked, rinse them off with clean water and then lay them out to dry on a towel. Again, it’s important that they have access to plenty of air so that they can dry properly.

Washing in the Washing Machine

If you’re short on time or just don’t feel like washing them by hand (let’s be honest, that’s all of us), then you can wash your gloves in the washing machine.

We’d recommend putting them in a mesh bag if you have one to prevent them from getting damaged.

If your gloves and other gear are particularly stinky, then you can let them soak in the machine for an hour before spinning begins. Most machines have a pre-soak feature that you can use.

Put them in with your other gear on a delicate cycle with warm water and a mild detergent. You can add some white vinegar and fabric softener to the wash if you want, as it’ll help to reduce the odors.

But don’t use bleach or any cleaning products that contain bleach, as it will damage your gear.

Once they’ve been washed, dry them out in the sun or on a clothesline. Again, it’s really important that they’re given plenty of time to dry so that bacteria doesn’t have a chance to grow.

Can you wash them in the Dishwasher?

Some people like to clean some parts of their hockey gear in the dishwasher. Strange, but to each their own.

While you can wash some small parts of your hockey gear in the dishwasher, we don’t recommend putting gloves in as they typically get too hot.

If you do decide to go for it, then make sure you don’t use any dishwasher tablets or detergents. They typically contain bleach which, as we said before, will damage your gloves.

Use the hottest setting on your dishwasher and make sure that they go through a complete cycle. If you’re concerned about them getting damaged in the machine, then you can always put them in a mesh bag first.

How To Dry Your Gloves

It is important to keep your hockey glove dry for many reasons. First, if your glove is wet, it will be much harder to grip your stick. This can lead to turnovers and goals against.

Second, wet gloves are much more susceptible to bacteria and mold growth. This can lead to skin infections and other health problems. Finally, wet gloves simply don’t feel as good as dry gloves. They can be uncomfortable and make it difficult to focus on the game.

There are a few different ways to keep your gloves dry. First, you can use a glove dryer.

These are small devices that you insert into your glove and they will circulate air, helping to dry out the moisture.

Second, you can stuff your gloves with newspaper or a towel overnight. This will help to absorb some of the moisture.

Finally, you can simply leave your gloves out in the sun for a few hours. This will help to evaporate the moisture.

No matter which method you choose, it is important to make sure that your gloves are completely dry before you put them back on. If you don’t, you run the risk of re-wetting them and starting the process all over again.

Can you Put Gloves In The Dryer?

Hockey gloves are one of the few bits of your gear that it’s recommended not to put in the dryer. It’s not recommended as the dryer gets too hot and can damage the material of your gloves.

You’re better off letting them air dry, as this will be more gentle on the fabric. If you’re in a hurry, then you can use a hairdryer on the cool setting to speed up the process.

How Often Should you Clean Hockey Gloves?

You should aim to clean your gloves after every game or practice. This will help to prevent the growth of bacteria and stop them from smelling too bad.

But if you’re short on time, then you can get away with washing them once a week. Just make sure that you’re air drying them after every use, as this will help to keep the smells at bay.

Tips for Keeping Your Hockey Gloves in Good Condition

There are a number of things you can do to keep your gloves in good condition. The most important thing is that you should always air out your gloves after every use.

Not only will this help them dry faster, but it will also prevent the growth of bacteria and keep the smell away – sweaty hockey gear is the worst right?

To air out your gloves, dry them off with a towel after use and set them on a flat surface in an open area. Don’t leave them in your hockey bag after the game. It’s important that air can circulate around the gloves so that they can dry properly.

Wash your gloves regularly. It’s important to keep your gloves clean, both for sanitary reasons and to prolong their life.

Storing your gloves properly will also help extend their life. Avoid storing your gloves in direct sunlight or in a humid environment. If possible, store your gloves in a breathable bag or container.


If you follow the steps in this guide, you will know how to clean your hockey gloves properly and keep them in good condition.

Remember, it’s important to clean your gloves after every use to prevent skin infections or other problems. So don’t wait – get cleaning!