I’m a big fan of a minimalist approach, where good design delivers products that do the core task extremely well, without unnecessary embellishment or bulk
These two sailing gloves from Zhik exactly fulfil those requirements. They are complementary products, with each one optimised for use in different conditions.
Both are available in either full-fingered versions, apart from thumb and forefinger, or short fingers.
However, the Zhik G2 Performance glove has extra protection and is intended for use in cooler conditions such as the ends of the season or a long and cold night watch.
By contrast the Zhik G1 Lightweight glove is a much lighter short-fingered alternative for use in warm summer weather.
The sizing gives a tight fit, which makes the gloves a little awkward to put on, or take off, especially when new.
This feels odd at first, but you quickly realise the benefits. The close fit means they are extremely comfortable and after a few minutes you no longer feel as though you’re wearing gloves.
I first used the long-fingered G2 version for a lively morning of sand yachting on a blustery early March day.
High sheet loads and constant sail trimming make this an ideal test. Suffice to say, they are the best gloves I’ve worn for the purpose.
Given the wind chill when sailing at well over 20 knots this was also a good test of their insulating properties, which were fine for this high activity use.
The Zhik G1 Lightweight is geared for use in hot weather and is therefore made of lighter material. It has a more breathable back and a little less padding.
Yet it’s also very comfortable and still offers excellent protection for palms and fingers.
Both have Velcro cuffs with a small extra tab. This secures the closure remarkably well and means you won’t accidentally lose a glove.
With these two products Zhik has covered most use cases for traditional sailing gloves.
Both versions are well thought out, offering comfort and protection, while taking up very little space in your kit bag.
Zhik G1 and G2 verdict
They are admittedly quite expensive, but well worth the money for the top performance they deliver.