Peeuuugh! Weightlifting gloves will eventually stink if they’ve been getting good use at the gym.

The stench of sweat, grime and old leather just don’t mix well.

I’ve been lifting weights for most of my life and have never used weightlifting gloves, and the potential stink of the leather is one reason why.

Weightlifting gloves will stink no matter what you do because the sweat and bacteria will abound.

Some Ways to Control the Odor

Spray Fabreze on them before and after your workout. Place the gloves under the hand dryer in your gym’s locker room post-workout. These tactics are a first step in controlling the smell of your weightlifting gloves.

You can also put powder on them — before and after the workout. If you’re going to use powder, however, do it after you spray anything on like Fabreze.

One woman recommends a diluted isopropyl alcohol solution in a spray bottle. Another woman suggests anti-bacterial spray.

Another woman who uses lifting gloves suggests setting them out in the sun.

Yet another woman says to freeze your lifting gloves overnight, as this will kill the bacteria that causes them to stink.

Let’s face it: leather, sweat and bacteria are always a nasty combination and will always produce a terrible odor.

While one woman says that washing the gloves will ruin them, a few more say that they wash the gloves all the time.

When the stink becomes too much to control, toss the gloves and buy another pair, or always have several pairs on hand and rotate them so that no one pair ever becomes inundated with sweat and bacteria.

A few men suggest to just stop using gloves altogether when you lift weights, as they interfere with the development of a strong grip, and will hamper your grip during certain exercises.

The No. 1 reason women use gloves to lift weights is to avoid calluses, though a firmer grip during the exercise routine is also a popular reason.

Some men use the gloves as well. One man reports that if he doesn’t, his palms will develop big calluses in which the skin comes off in gross chunks.

Another man asks what’s so bad about calluses on a woman’s hands?

Calluses mean that you have developed that area to be resistant to uncomfortable gripping.

In a real-life situation, in which you must hold onto something mightily hard — you will not have your lifting gloves handy (unless you carry them around with you wherever you go).

Your baby-soft, smooth, untrained skin will shred and hurt as you apply a grip in a natural setting. Calluses will protect you from pain and ripped skin.

Calluses are barely noticeable unless you flash your palms to someone. I doubt that cashiers or bank tellers notice mine when they hand me money.

And so what if they do? If a man starts getting fresh with me and I flash my calluses, he’ll think twice about messing with a woman with calluses on her hands!

Weightlifting gloves come in cheap varieties; I recommend always having several pairs on hand to minimize the stink, and replacing every several weeks if the odor tends to get really bad.

Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.  
Top image: Shutterstock/ Anatoliy Karlyuk