Trying to figure out how to clean goalkeeper gloves may seem simple at first, but there are a few measures you may not know about which are vital for maintaining your glove's long-term.
Moreover, keeping your gloves clean is essential for maximising their performance and grip on the pitch, as latex is a material that doesn't respond well to built-up dirt.
Fortunately, we've put together this step-by-step guide to talk you through the process, including some of the dos and don'ts to keep in mind when it comes to ensuring your gloves are left in pristine condition.
So, grab your best pair of goalkeeper gloves and follow our top tips to prepare them for your next football fixture.
How To Clean Goalkeeper Gloves
The following is what we believe to be the best method for cleaning your goalkeeper gloves after a match.
We'd also advise washing your gloves before first use to 'active' the latex for maximum performance, and occasionally wetting your palms during a game to get the best possible grip out of them.
Step 1: Fill a container big enough to fit one glove in with warm water and add a small drop of non-abrasive dish soap.
Top Tip: Leading glove manufacturer Reusch recommends water no warmer than 35º.
Step 2: Soak one of your gloves in the water for around 10 seconds to loosen the dirt.
Step 3: Then use your thumbs to scrub the dirt off lightly to avoid tearing the latex. You can apply glove cleaner to help remove the dirt. If you do, make sure you follow the solutions instructions carefully to avoid damaging your gloves.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 with the second glove before you commence drying them.
Step 5: Once sufficiently cleaned, place one glove in the middle of a towel and fold it over until you sandwich your glove between the two ends. Then, apply a significant amount of pressure to the glove to squeeze out any excess water.
Step 6: Leave the glove in a cool place, away from direct sunlight, to dry out completely before repeating steps 5 and 6 with the second glove. Make sure to separate out each finger before leaving to dry.
What About Knitted Gloves?
It's not often you'll find a pair of goalkeeper gloves that feature sections of knitted fabric; however, that's not to say they don't exist.
In fact, the highly popular PUMA Future Grip Hybrid 5.1's worn by the likes of Jan Oblak, combines almost fully-knitted backhands with neoprene and latex.
Fortunately, you don't have to adapt too much when you encounter knitted fabric. Simply follow the same method mentioned above, but make sure that you check the fabric is dry before using them again as it may take a little longer than the latex.
Also, in the case of the PUMA Future Grip Hybrid 5.1's, be cautious of cleaning around the zip because if you apply too much pressure, you may end up snapping it off.
What Should You Avoid Doing When Cleaning Goalkeeper Gloves?
There are definitely some things you'll want to avoid when cleaning goalkeeper gloves to prevent yourself from causing any permanent damage to them. Don't worry though because we've got you covered right here.
Firstly, avoid using hot or cold water to soak your gloves in. Warm water is what you're after because going too far in either direction could result in you damaging the latex and glue.
Also, stick to cleaning your gloves by hand as scrubbing them with a brush can create a tear in the latex. Similarly, avoid rubbing your gloves dry with a towel for the same reason.
Although it may seem like a quick and easy fix, avoid using a washing machine to clean your gloves. The heat, spin, and amount of water can ingrain some of the dirt rather than remove it, thus reducing the latexes' effectiveness.
Finally, never try speeding up the drying process using a tumble dryer, placing them on a radiator, or by 'wringing' them out. This removes the natural moisture in the latex which can lead to them losing their grip.
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