Boxing gloves protect your hands and the opponent from injuries while sparring or fighting competitively. However, the gloves become damp with sweat and pick up dust and grime, making them stinky and dirty. Cleaning and maintaining your boxing gloves properly and regularly will keep them looking good and odor-free, and extend their life. However, unless you know the correct techniques for cleaning and maintaining your gloves, you may do more harm than good. Some handy insights on boxing glove cleaning and upkeep by experienced trainers:
Air Your Gloves
Your hands sweat and transfer the bacteria to the inside of the gloves every time you use your gloves. According to My Boxing Life, the bacteria flourish inside the gloves due to the damp environment in the gloves, which then start to stink. If you leave your gloves inside your gym bag, you help the bacteria to keep growing since fresh air cannot reach them. You should remove your gloves from the gym bag immediately after getting back home, wipe the outside and the inside with a dry cloth, and lay them out in a well-ventilated place to dry out.
Clean the Gloves
After wiping off the sweat from the gloves, you should disinfect them. The best way is to make a solution of vinegar and water in equal proportions and spray the inside and outside of the gloves using a spray bottle. You can use white synthetic vinegar or apple cider vinegar and add five to ten drops of tea tree oil for additional anti-fungal and anti-bacterial action. The vinegar solution is effective and does not damage your Revgear gloves, unlike many commercially available cleaning products. Wipe the gloves with a clean cloth to remove dust, dirt, sweat, and grime.
Dry the Gloves
Drying the gloves is essential because if they are damp, the bacteria and fungus will grow. The best way of drying the gloves is to air dry them by folding the wrist straps back and opening up the gloves to the maximum extent. You should lay them out or hang them in a well-ventilated room under a fan or near an open window taking care not to expose them to direct sunlight. If you need to use your gloves in a hurry, you can use a hair drier to dry the gloves or stuff crumpled newspaper sheets in them and leave them overnight. If the gloves are too damp, you may need to change the newspapers after a couple of hours. Remember not to use a hot air setting in the hair drier or leave the gloves near a fire to dry them to prevent damage.
After cleaning and drying your leather boxing gloves, you must ensure that you condition them to prevent them from drying out and developing cracks. You can use a good-quality commercial leather conditioner or the essential oil of lemon. Apply a few drops of the conditioner on a lint-free cloth and work the oil in using a circular motion. Remove the excess oil with a clean and dry cloth. You can apply a few drops of pleasant-smelling essential oil to make the gloves smell nice and clean.