Expert Review: Hestra Heli Ski Liner 3 Finger
This review is my honest opinion of the gloves, which I purchased with my own money in December of 2017.
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the gloves, which I purchased with my own money in December of 2017.
The Hestra Heli Ski Liner 3 Finger is a great glove for any skier or rider in any kind of cold conditions. They are easy to wear and use for any skill level. One doesn't need to be a seasoned veteran to appreciate these.
About the gloves I own
- Model: Hestra Army Leather Heli Ski 3-Finger
- Size: 9
- Height: 5’7”
- Weight: 170lbs
- Experience: 10 years of skiing
- When I bought them: I bought my first pair in December 2017
- Days used: 100+
- Weather conditions used in: Every possible winter condition, from skiing to shoveling snow to just walking my dog
- Where I’ve used them: Colorado, British Columbia, and all over the Northeast Terrain: Mainly been used in resort settings, but also in the backcountry for touring
How they perform
What I was looking for
I struggled with gloves, having bad circulation issues for years, mainly in my hands with Raynaud's Disease where in cold conditions I lose circulation completely in my fingers. I hated being confined to mittens, losing all dexterity, and having to take them off to do anything. I needed something easier to wear that allowed me to use my hands without having to take off my gloves, all the while keeping me warm.
Why I chose this gear
I chose these because it allowed me to maintain dexterity and use my hands to do things like adjust my zippers, grab things, and, in general, move around in the glove easier and still be able to keep my hands and fingers warm. I looked at a few other gloves and mittens out there, but gloves have always made my fingers colder. Other mittens didn’t look as durable, and just felt more puffy and bulky and they always made using my hands much more difficult.
What I love about them
- Fit: These liners fit great, they offer a good feel, and are not too bulky. The sizing options really offer a top-tier fit when compared to the standard small, medium, large sizing. I can really dial these in to just what I need.
- Comfort: Comfort doesn’t get much better than these. I can move my hands and fingers freely without feeling like I’m stretching the liner or pulling anywhere. Warm and comfortable with soft materials and a tough outer shell over them.
- Ease of movement: Movement is a breeze. Obviously, with any winter glove I’m not going to have surgeon-level precision, but for everything I need to on the slopes, they get the job done: from zippers on my coat, to grabbing my goggles, to adjusting music or my helmet.
- Warmth: On the warmth factor, for the slim profile of these, it is amazing. Warm, but not an oven around my hand. It keeps me warm and regulates pretty well without making me sweat.
- Waterproofing: The liner itself is not waterproof, but the shell is top notch. I have skied in sleet, rain, and snow in these, and they stand up to the test every time.
- Breathability: The liner is very breathable. Every once in a while on a warm day, I will feel a little warm, but they still keep the warmth. While they can make me a little sweaty on warmer days, it’s never to a point that makes it unenjoyable.
- Weight: The bottom line is they’re lightweight, but tough.
- Conditions: I can take these liners in just about every cold condition. If it is really, really cold, I have other gloves, but anything above probably 10 degrees F, I am good to go. I can also drop a hand warmer between the liner and shell if I need to. The liner gets dirty but offers that extra boost when I need it.
- Features: The liner itself has no features, other than the fact that it is removable. If I need to throw that liner inside something else, I absolutely can. It just velcros to the shell, but it’s easily removable. The shell that one can get with these offers a long, cinchable cuff and wrist leashes, which are a huge lifesaver in my opinion. No more worrying about dropping a glove on the lift.
- Quality: Their quality is some of the best in the industry. They are lightweight, and the material is soft yet very durable. I haven’t had an issue yet.
- Durability: I have been using these liners in my gloves for probably 30-40 days a season, for over five years just skiing, let alone everything else I use them for, like walking the dog or cutting wood or hiking, and I am yet to have a problem with them. They do get dirty and need a wash, but they just keep on going.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Touchscreen compatibility: I am not able to use my phone with these on, but we all make sacrifices somewhere.
Favorite moment with this gear
I was skiing with a friend in Breckenridge, Colorado, where we lived at the time. We were skiing on Peak 10, which is a lot of gladed and open, off-trail terrain, and a horrendous wind storm kicked up. It was so bad that it was whipping our coats and completely obscuring our vision. I could barely make out the tips of my skis as we tried to slip our way down. The first time in my life I ever felt vertigo, as the horizon line was completely gone; it made me feel dizzy if I looked up. We finally found some pine trees and got up behind them and wiggled in for some shelter. The wind was whipping all around, blowing snow into my helmet, my coat, my face. It was everywhere there was an opening; there was snow getting in no matter how much I hunched over and tried to stop it. We sat for about 15-20 minutes, and it was frigid, even by Colorado standards, but that entire time my hands were warm, snow free, and held me through until it finally stopped and we got down.
Value for the money vs. other options
I have to admit, any Hestra product is pricey, but one absolutely gets what they pay for. For top-level performance, it’s necessary to shell out some money for it, but it is worth it. These are top-of-the-line in the winter industry. Enough so that I own two pairs of these gloves and liners, as well four other Hestra products. I have had others like the Absolute mitten series from Black Diamond in the past, and while they did well, they just seemed to be more puffy and bulky than these. They were great for insulation that I needed, but really just took all control out of my hands because they were just so puffy. The Hestra keeps that slimline feel with top-level warmth.
These are absolutely worth it. They’re great gloves and liners; I can’t praise these enough. For those who struggle with cold hands, these are the glove liners for them.