How To Clean Boxing Gloves (5 Different Methods!)

February 4, 2022

I am sure you’ve had the “incredible” experience of smelling a whiffed punch aiming at your face and wincing in literal pain from the smell. The vile odor comes from your partner’s gloves. And if you don’t want to make your training partners endure similar violations of their sense of smell, you need to take good care of your boxing gloves.

Prevention is the best cure against foul smells. To avoid the occurrence of the smelliness in the first place, always wipe your gloves after training and let them dry out in fresh air.

The boxing gloves are one of the primary pieces of equipment. If you are serious about preserving them, you need to follow simple maintenance rules. Continue reading to learn how to take care of your boxing gloves.

Why Do Gloves Stink?

To better know what to do to keep your gloves fresh, it’s good to understand what causes the smell and wear in the first place. As with many other things, the enemy of gloves is moisture.

But moisture is unavoidable as your hands will heavily sweat during training. Bacteria mainly exuded by your hands cause the “patented” glove smell of rot. And bacteria thrive precisely in moist and dark places.

Discover The Little Known Secrets For Unlocking Devastating KO Power!

Heavy hands are built doing these things...

Now let’s see how to prevent your gloves from becoming a welcoming home to bacteria.

How to Clean Boxing Gloves

Step 1

After training, make sure to wipe all sweat and other bodily fluids from the outside and inside the gloves. Just keep a small piece of cloth in your gym bag for that purpose.

Can You Put Boxing Gloves in The Washing Machine

Step 2

Immediately get the gloves out of your gym bag and open them widely when you get home. If they have Velcro straps, turn them around.

How Do You Get the Smell Out of Boxing Gloves

Step 3

Leave the gloves to completely dry out near an open window or perhaps in front of a fan. The important thing is to keep them out in the open.

Can You Use Lysol Wipes On Boxing Gloves

Not necessarily a cleaning step, but a preventive measure is always using hand wraps. They are cloth and will absorb a significant amount of the sweat that would otherwise pour into the inside of the gloves.

Other Methods to Clean Your Gloves

If you follow the procedure outlined above after every session, you will not need to clean your gloves often. But even so, there are a few cleaning methods that it’s highly recommended to do periodically (not all of them, of course).

Anti-bacterial spray

  1. Spray the gloves with an anti-bacterial spray inside and out
  2. Keep them widely unlaced or unwrapped overnight to dry

Anti-bacterial sprays should be your primary cleaning method. Still, there are other ways to do it with things you can easily find in any home.

Apple cider vinegar

  1. Aside from great seasoning, apple cider vinegar may add a few months to your boxing gloves life. It can be used for other pieces of gear as well, like the gym bag, shoes, etc.
  2. Put a small amount on your hand and rub it on the inside of the glove
  3. Leave to dry in an airy place

Baking soda

  1. To continue with the kitchen theme, baking soda can also help get rid of foul smells.
  2. Place the baking soda in a thin cloth (a sock will do) and put it in the glove to absorb moisture and smell.

Soapy water

  1. Prepare a container with soapy water.
  2. Use a rag to wipe the inside gently and outside of the gloves
  3. Leave the gloves wide open to try in a well-ventilated space for a long time.

Can You Put Boxing Gloves in The Washing Machine?

A big mistake would be to put the gloves in the washing machine. It may be the easiest solution and will surely kill the smell and germs, but it will also kill the gloves.

The warm water and force of the washing machine will destroy the lather and complexion of the gloves. On top of that, they will be drenched in water which will be hard to dry afterward.

How Do You Get the Smell Out of Boxing Gloves?

Aside from the methods outlined above, special products are designed to take the smell out of the gloves. Many manufacturers make this kind of product.

These special deodorizers will suck out the moisture and not let smelly bacteria develop in the first place. Deodorizers are very good at extending the life and removing unpleasant odors from all types of training gear. 

Can You Use Lysol Wipes On Boxing Gloves?

Disinfectant wipes also will help you with gloves maintenance. While they won’t brush all the sweat and bacteria away, it’s still far better and stronger than regular paper towels.

A good option is first to use a wet cloth to wipe the surface once and then apply the Lysol wipes to reach the germs. They also always have very nice aromas so that you can leave a bruise on your training partner’s face, but at least it will have a lemon aroma.

Can You Freeze Boxing Gloves?

While it may sound odd, freezing your boxing gloves can help get rid of the smell. The frost is an effective way to kill the bacteria causing trouble. Put your gloves in a plastic bag and into the freezer overnight, and there is a good chance they won’t smell in the morning.

Recommended Boxing Glove Disinfectant Spray

Bacteria can be very stubborn, but thankfully today’s disinfectant products are just as effective.

Many products will do the job, but the Lysol spray is tried and tested and, according to the manufacturer, kills 99.9% of germs. The good thing is that you can use the spray on many other surfaces and pieces of gear.

There is no need to overdo it. If you follow the simple prevention steps after every session, there will be no need to use disinfectant too often. Keeping your boxing gloves fresh and well maintained will significantly prolong their life. There are just a few easy steps, so there’s no good reason to skip them.

About the author 

Plamen Kostov

Plamen has been training for the last 14 years in karate and kickboxing, before settling in for MMA for the last 5 years. He has a few amateur kickboxing fights and currently trains with and helps a stable of professional and amateur MMA fighters.


You may also like