Blauer - Tactical Clothing & Equipment

Uniform Gloves for Duty and Patrol: Picking the Right Fit for You

Blauer Storm Traffic Glove

When it comes to picking the right gloves for your work in uniform as a police officer, it’s important to be aware that there are many options designed for the specific tasks you’ll need to do while wearing them.  Let’s talk about some of the different models and types of patrol and tactical gloves to help you select the one that’s right for you.


A duty glove is a general-purpose glove designed around the needs of patrol officers, meant to handle most of what they might expect to encounter out on the street on a routine basis. Common tasks include pat-down or frisk procedures for officer safety, driving, handling various materials, and more – all of which require a positive grip while still maintaining tactile feel so that the officer can tell what they’re touching.  Scenarios in which a heavier-duty law enforcement glove may be called for can also be handled by a duty glove if designed properly, such as discharging a service weapon, or going hands-on with an actively resistant subject.  Common features of a patrol glove, as these are also known, are a durable material construction (usually primarily leather), reinforced stitching, and a shape tailored to match the hand’s usual resting position and range of motion.  Blauer’s police search gloves are also touchscreen-enabled, and some offer special functionality, including the Frisk glove, which is cut resistant to ANSI Level IV, and the Fray glove, which features low-profile knuckle protection.


A police traffic glove is a specialized product engineered for safety and visibility while directing traffic in busy roadways.  Construction of these gloves varies, but usually consists of hi vis materials paired with reflective trim which bounces light back to its source to enhance visibility to drivers.  It’s important that drivers be able to see the officer and recognize their hand signals, as being struck by a vehicle accounted for 15 Line of Duty Deaths (LODD) of officers in a recent year.  Thus, a traffic safety glove is a critical piece of gear for anyone out in the path of traffic.  Some reflective gloves are built for higher durability, such as our Storm traffic glove, with leather construction and touchscreen friendly fingertips.  Others, like our Bolt traffic glove, have contrasting colors with hi vis on the back and bright red on the palm combined with reflective trim for enhanced conspicuity.  There are even winter traffic gloves, such as our Hi Vis Flicker Glove, which help insulate the officer against cold while directing traffic.


The best tactical gloves are made for intense activity, providing the officer with knuckle protection against impact with hard surfaces, such as may occur when running through a doorway or other opening, and also abrasion resistance to further shield the hand from injury.  Some are designed as tactical shooting gloves, with increased dexterity and sensitivity in the fingers to maintain trigger feel and help with accuracy of shot placement.  All of them are suitable for tasks in which protecting the hand is of paramount importance, and many officers choose this type for use in riot or crowd control scenarios as a result.  Advanced technologies such as Poron® impact protective foam (which is soft and pliable until force is applied, at which point it becomes more rigid to disperse the impact) have begun to make their way into these types of gloves, such as in our Jam Glove with Knuckle Protection, which again allows the use of a touchscreen since devices have become an integral part of many SWAT and other tactical operations.  For those who prefer a shooting glove, the Strike model provides the best blend of protection and performance while discharging a firearm.


Police bike patrol is a unique community policing function which allows officers to come in closer contact with the public on a routine basis, as well as providing the ability to get to some locations faster and more quietly than a patrol car might allow.  These officers spend a lot of time on their bicycle, and need a glove which helps to pad the hand and protect it from vibration and impacts when the bike runs over obstacles, while still allowing them to access and utilize their equipment normally.  Common features of this type of glove include padding in the palm area, usually made of an impact-dissipating gel, breathable mesh on the back of the hand and in between the fingers to let sweat evaporate, and some feature a terrycloth thumb to help clear sweat off the officer’s face.  We offer two such models, the Rumble bike glove and Rumble Shorty, which also add knuckle protection and an adjustable Velcro closure to the above features – the difference between the two being that the Rumble Shorty is fingerless, preferred by some officers for increased feel on brakes and for other tasks.


In the northern part of the United States and at higher elevations throughout the country, patrol during the wintertime can be challenging, requiring the officer to stand outside for long periods of time in cold or frigid weather.  These gloves feature insulation such as 3M Thinsulate™ material along with waterproof and windproof nylon shells to keep out the cold, snow, and freezing rain.  Usually these gloves are not meant to be used while performing hands-on functions or using equipment outside of keying a radio lapel mic or moving objects around, however certain gloves have been built which help to bridge the gap between warmth and functionality.  One such example is our Squall Glove, which is touchscreen enabled with a water repellent shell that is lined with two levels of Thinsulate to help keep fingers flexible.  Another solution for much colder days is a winter patrol glove that can be taken off quickly to access equipment, such as our Flicker Insulated Glove, which comes off fast with a quick downward throwing motion.


Picking the right uniform gloves for you is a decision to consider carefully, and hopefully the information above will help you to make sure that you’re fully prepared for whatever your shift on the street might bring.  If you’d like to check out all our glove options in one place, just click here: Blauer Police Gloves.

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