Vallerret’s Women’s Nordic Photography Gloves have the insulation you need to keep your hands warm during most of the winter in the UK. Meanwhile, their clever flip-top forefinger and thumb sections allow you to feel all your camera’s buttons and dials. In addition, they have non-slip sections to ensure you maintain a good grip, even in bad weather.
Vallerret first came to my attention a couple of years ago. Until that point, I’d been chopping off the forefinger and thumb of gloves to create a pair that would keep most of my fingers warm while letting me control a camera. However, purchasing a pair of the company’s original photography gloves, the Markhof Pro Model, gave me a much slicker solution to frozen fingers.
Now Vallerret has a small collection of gloves and mittens that are specifically designed for photographers. Each of them is designed to give you the dexterity you need to control a camera while still keeping your fingers warm. In this review, I’m going to focus on the Women’s Nordic photography gloves.
Vallerret Women’s Nordic Photography Gloves Review
Initially, the Women’s Nordic gloves seem quite similar to the Markhof Pro Model gloves. However, they are sized and shaped for women. So while I need the Markhofs in extra small size, medium is the right size in the Nordics.
A key difference is that the W’s Nordic photography gloves have some Thinsulate insulation, which makes them a bit warmer. There’s also a 100% Merino wool lining and a jersey cuff to make them feel snug when you pull them on.
What make’s the Nordic gloves photography gloves, is the flip-off ends to the forefingers and thumbs. These open from the palm side and flip back so the tips of those two fingers and thumbs are exposed. The glove tips are kept out of the way by magnets which hold them against the glove.
On the back of each glove, there’s a pocket with a weatherproof zip. This is designed for holding a memory card or something similarly sized. The left one, however, comes with a tripod quick release plate key on a lanyard that’s stitched onto the glove. That’s a really nice touch. It means you don’t have to search in your purse or pockets for a coin. And thanks to the lanyard, you shouldn’t lose the key.
The Women’s Nordic gloves have a high-quality finish, with one exception. The white Thinsulate insulation that keeps your fingers warm is visible around the opening of the flip-off section. It’s not a major issue, but it stands out and looks a bit tatty on a black or black and grey glove.
The gloves are made from a combination of water-resistant suede and 2 ply twill that feels durable and is water and wind resistant.
There’s also a non-slip coating on the palms and inner side of the gloves. This gives good purchase on a camera, even in rain.
If you’re used to ripping off your gloves to use your camera, it may take you a little while to get used to wearing gloves. However, the forefinger and thumb tips flip off quickly and usually stay held back thanks to the magnets. On really cold days, these gloves can really be the difference between getting the shot and not.
For a start, your hand isn’t in direct contact with the cold camera while you hold it. And between shots, all of your fingers are protected from the cold. I’ve tried using fingerless gloves in the past and it doesn’t take long at 0C before you can’t feel your fingers or the camera controls. The finger caps make a considerable difference in a bitter wind!
Vallerret makes other thicker gloves that are designed for the real depths of winter and arctic conditions and I’ll review those at a later date.
I was very happy with the first Vallerret gloves that I bought and they’ve given great service, showing little sign of wear. The Vallerret Women’s Nordic photography gloves seem just as good in most ways. They’re also a little warmer, which is a bonus. The only disappointment is the way the filling shows at the finger openings.