I had the pleasure to give the CandyGrind Handbag Mitts
a solid review which definitely got me stoked since I had heard good words about their products through various snowboarding mags. Problem with mag reviews is that they are short on page space and in my opinion, can be brief and short on info. When it comes to reviewing a product, details need to be shared, pictures need to be taken, and putting them to the test needs to be accomplished, all of which I did at Vail over the past month, all while riding a ton of POW and even getting in some groomer, cold days.
About me. I wear a large in CG gloves. I am 6', 175 lbs. I have been riding since 1989, am 33 yrs old and I ride pretty hard. I would consider my level, advanced/expert when it comes to freerider/freestyle/backcounty. I have had the opportunity to ride with numerous different mitts and gloves so I feel I am a great reviewer when it comes to this product line. How I review is each pic I post I break down with details of positive and negative through "first opinion" and "putting them to use test".
The Handbags retail at $115 greenbacks on their site and come in 4 different colorways: Black, White, Orange/Purple, Blue/White. Side note: There are other sites out there that do sell them for less.
Here are the details of the Handbag Mitt from CNDYGRND's site:
From subzero days in the backcountry to summers at Hood, the Handbag can handle it. When it's time to text that cougar from the lift line, slide open the side zip to reveal the pipe glove liner. For those spring slush sessions, ditch the mitt and rock just the glove.
Handbag Mitten (With Side Open Zippers & REMOVABLE PIPE GLOVE Liner)
- Full Genuine Leather Outer Shell And Palm
- Hipora Breathable Waterproof Insert
- Moisture Wicking
-Micro Fleece Lining
- Doule Reinforced LeatherFingertips
- Weather Proof Zippers
- Wrap Around Leather Wrist Straps With Locking Velcro Closure
- Custom Dyed Leather Colors
- Logo Embroidery Detail
- Quilting Details
- Logo metal emblem
- Pairing Pulley Tab
- Removable wrist straps
Pipe Glove Liner
-Polyester Stretch Twill
-Chamude Palm With Silicone Grip
-Moisture Wicking Microfleece Lining
So let's get started!
Top & Palm view of the Handbag Mitt.
1. First Opinion:
WOW, the leather feels super tough, thick, and solid as far as construction quality of the leather. However, I was surprised it wasn't insulated more so considering the description of the glove called out "subzero" days, but it is insulated with a thin moisture wicking micro fleece lining layer, and does come with the pipe glove liners. You can definitely tell where there is doubled layers of leather in the finger tip area of the mitts. Stitching is very high quality. The glove is super light and mobility of the hand with the glove on is free and easy.
Very impressed just after first glance but the lack of the insulation was slightly concerning. Super amped to see how they perform in "subzero" days and POW.
Top and Palm view with the wrap around strap.
2. First Opinion of Strap:
Really looking at the wrap around strap here and absolutely loved it! Reminded me of a boxing glove and how the strap cinched down makes the glove a permanent fixture to your hand. The only issue I experienced here was that it was difficult to put the mittens on over the liners. They definitely do no just slip on over the liner, they need to be pulled and pulled and pulled again. But, once they are on and the strap is secure, they ain't goin anywhere!
Top, Palm, and Wrist View of the Liners
3. First Opinion of Liners:
Just as the description says from the website, these liners are Pipe Gloves. A little bit thinner than some Pipe Gloves that I have ridden in but not much. They come with the Silicon gripped palm with micro fleece lining on the inside. I was very impressed with these liners and after using the gloves can now see why the shell does not need to be so heavily insulated due to the liners. The wrist comes with a snap button to also secure closure down to the wrist. Good thinking CG!
Zipper View, Open and Closed
4. First Opinion of the Zipper:
Brilliant in an English accent! I LOVE THIS FEATURE!! I stopped riding with mittens years ago due to not being able to use my fingers for adjusting bindings, messing with zippers, etc. With this weatherproof zipper your 4 fingers can come out to play with zero restrictions. The thumb stays in the mitten. If you are rocking the mittens without liners then great for using the cell phone or ipod to change music or make those annoying adjustments as needed.
Strapping in with the fingers out of the mittens
5. Putting them to use - Bindings:
Here you can see I am using the mittens with the liners on what was considered to be a POW day. It was also very chilly with a 10-15 mph wind factor making that morning temp 0 degrees F or even colder. It was extremely awesome that all I had to do was unzip the mitt and strap in with the liners on. So far I am loving these gloves!
Riding over a foot of Powder
6. Putting them to use - Riding:
Here is a shot I took after riding the trees and powder for about 4 hours. They sun was out on this particular day and temps were a little warmer, right around 7-23 degrees F over the course of the day. My hands were completely dry and very warm all day. In fact, I had to unzip a few times to ventilate later in the day when the temps increased. Remember that concern I had with the lack of insulation. Not a concern anymore.
7. Putting them to use - Trees Sesh:
On this day a tree sesh (or what others call a Safety Meeting) took place on a very snowy, cold day. We had snow dumping on us and blowing in every direction and the Handbags had NO issues. I didn't even have an issue with holding on to my beer! I tried to drink my cold beer with the glove unzipped with just the liners but sadly my fingers were cold so I had to zip it up. Poor me.
After the beer flowed right through me I had to pee, and fellas, this is awesome! Unzip the gloves, unzip my zipper, and awwwwww! Thumbs up CG!
I gave the Handbag Mittens 4-1/2 out of 5 SHQ's. The only reason they didn't get all 5 was the level of difficulty putting the gloves on. You might be saying to yourself, "But the zipper makes it so you don't have to take the gloves off and then put back on". Yes but no. Every picture you see here on this review required me to take the glove/liner off to take a pic. The liner is too bulky and not screen sensitive so after many times of taking pics and putting them back on I really got a great feel of the ease of off/on accessibility. I did notice though that it has been getting easier to put them on. I have boarded in these 4 hard days now and they have loosened up a tad due to the leather stretching. I imagine after a season or two of riding they should be much easier to put on over the liners.
For warmth, they certainly do keep your hands warm on the subzero days! On several occasions while riding the lift on a windy, snowy, super cold day my fingers were warm. I would actually look over at my buddies who were wearing gloves and their fingers would be balled up in the palms to keep warm, while they were complaining of cold fingers. Plus, a good indicator for me on how well these gloves work is that when my toes are cold but my fingers aren't, you know they are dope gloves!
CandyGrind made a super amazing glove with the Handbags. The name is very fitting as they are just that, a leather handbag that keeps the heat in and the cold out. If you are looking for an extremely durable, warm, and dry mitten that is now universal, these should be your next purchase! Props CandyGrind!
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