How to Wash Your Fencing Glove

How to Wash a Fencing Glove

Let us show you how to wash a fencing glove. Why? Keeping the glove(s) clean is important because bacteria builds up from sweaty hands and can make the glove very stinky and cause a rash.

For practice gloves:

Most inexpensive practice gloves are machine washable. If your glove has the little non-slip rubber dots, be sure to handwash it as maching washing it will remove the dots. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s care label first to be sure. The easiest way to clean it is to:

For Machine Washing

1.  Throw an inexpensive practice glove into a regular washer (be sure the velcro is closed) with a small amount of your normal detergent – NOT the saber competition glove or expensive foil or epee tournament that must be hand-washed. Inexpensive practice gloves can go into the washer and dryer but NEVER with fencing whites. If you prefer to handwash see instructions below.
2. Cold or room temperature water works fine, normal or gentle setting but do not add bleach as it will fade out any other color in the glove.  If you put the glove put in with whites it will most likely turn the whites a shade of the color in the glove.  Do NOT add fabric softener,
3. Throw in the dryer on a LOW heat or delicate setting – again be sure the velcro is closed. NEVER put it dryer sheets or fabric softener because it can damage the soft side of the velcro which is critical to making the two sides stick together.  For a more expensive glove we recommend that you lay it flat to dry on a towel or dryer grid to dry. Don’t hesitate to turn on a fan to help it dry faster.
4. DO NOT:
     A. Never use bleach on a fencing glove, especially if it has colors or any metal.
     B. Never use fabric softener on a fencing glove.
     C. Never put it in to the sun to dry.
     D. Do not use high heat settings to wash or dry.
     E. Do not “wring” the glove.

For handwashing non-metallic or non-conductive gloves:
  1. Fill a thoroughly cleaned sink or bucket with room temperature or warm water and a delicate detergent like Woolite or equivalent.  Swirl the glove through the water, be sure to open the velcro so the inside of the glove gets cleaned too.
    2. Let soak for about 15 minutes – use your hands to gently rub out any extra dirty spots as much as possible.
    3. Rinse thoroughly being sure all detergent is washed out.
    4. Squeeze (do not wring or twist) dry, you can also pat a dry towel on the damp glove to take out excess water
     5. Lay flat on a towel or dryer grid to dry. You can put on a fan to help it dry faster.

It’s not practical to wash your glove after each use, but it’s easy to disinfect after each use using a spray fabric disinfectant like Lysol Spray fabric disinfectant. Be sure to let it air dry after each use.

For the more expensive competition saber glove, hand-washing the glove as below is the best way to go:

For a saber FIE tournament glove
photo of FIE saber glove
FIE Saber glove

1. Mix warm (not hot) water with hand wash detergent like woolite in a sink and put the glove in.
2. Wash gently by rubbing with your hands or with a sponge. Do not rub the metal fibers together.
3. Rinse well several times and squeeze gently.
4. Gently dab the remaining water with a dry towel. Don’t wring or twist as that will damage and deform the glove.
5. Pull out the fingers to restore the good shape of your glove.
6. Air dry or lay flat with the Velcro open, aiming a fan at it will help it dry faster. 

graphic of Lyson Spray Disinfectant for sanitizing your gear
Use a spray disinfectant like this one on all your gear after each use between washings.

Washing your fencing lame is very similar, click here to visit our page and learn how.

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