Oftentimes, cycling gloves end up being overly-complex with padding, gel inserts, Velcro and the like. This can be particularly annoying when it comes to cold-weather gloves. Santini has embraced another path by using backed thermofleece with water and wind protection when things get cold.

Santini 365 Vega H2O Gloves Features:

  • High-reflectivity inserts between fingers
  • Touchscreen-compatible thumb and index finger tips
  • Acquazero fabric for wind/water repellency
  • Silicon no-slip gripper on palms
  • Stretchy, fleece-lined cuffs
  • Recommended temperature range: 40-60° F
  • Colors: Black, Orange, Yellow
  • MSRP: $60
Santini Vega Gloves and Scudo Windbreaker

Winter gravel rides are great with the Acquazero Vega Gloves.

“Just right” winter gloves

Thick, bulky winter cycling gloves have their place — for fat biking and truly cold temperatures. However, the sweet spot for riding in the winter is realistically 40° or greater and while that’s still cold, it doesn’t require bundling up like an Eskimo to get your winter miles in. That 40-60° range is just what the Acquazero Vega Gloves are made for.

Built with Acquazero fabric on the top, the Santini 365 Vega H2O gloves keep water and wind at bay to maintain warmth. Acquazero is a long-lasting water-repellent treatment that will help keep your hands dry (and warm). The unfortunate part is the palms aren’t treated, so they soak up water pretty quickly. So, while they do feature water-repellency, you don’t want to get caught in a downpour.

Santini Acquazero Vega Winter Gloves Review

Silicon strips offer excellent tactility without feeling too sticky.

Santini has placed grippy silicon strips on the palms that certainly aid in bar feel and grip. It’s sticky, but not tacky, so you can still move about the bars with ease. Without any palm padding, the Acquazero Vega’s may not be suitable for long rides, but I’ve had no complaints of hand fatigue so far while using the new Shimano PRO Discover Medium Flare alloy handlebars.

Since visibility is always on everyone’s mind, Santini has done a great job of integrating highly-reflective inserts between all the fingers. Even in daylight they seem to reflect all visible light and in low-light conditions, they glow like LED lights. For even better daytime visibility, I’d go with either the orange or yellow options.

Santini Acquazero Vega Winter Gloves Review

The thumb length is a touch long when not on the bars.

Overall fit is spot-on as the size large fits as expected. The only exception is the thumb length while not on the bike. All the other fingers are snug, but the thumb has a touch extra length. It’s completely fine when on the bike since wrapping your hands around the tops, drops or hoods stretches everything out. But, when off the bike using the excellent touchscreen capability, there’s always excess material getting in the way of touchscreen accuracy. Still, these gloves do provide excellent touchscreen capability.

Since most winter gloves are bulky and typically feature a Velcro closure, these simple pull-on gloves are a great alternative. The low-profile, fleece-lined cuffs can slide atop long-sleeve jerseys, like the Santini Classe LS Jersey or jackets like the Santini Scudo Windbreaker. But, it’s low-profile enough to also slide underneath — it’s rider’s choice and either options work well. 

Santini Acquazero Vega Winter Gloves Review

A simple cuff works great atop or under many jerseys and jackets.

Breathability is excellent and warmth is good as well within the stated range. At the low end of that range, plan on things getting a little chilly on longer descents, but warmth is really good overall.

The Good

  • Water and wind-resistant material on the back of the hands
  • Grippy, but not too grippy (I’d say just right)
  • No Velcro closures or fancy stuff — just good, clean gloves
  • Fleece lining is so cozy
  • Low-profile cuffs make it easy to seal out drafts
  • Touchscreen tips work well
  • Fits true-to-size

The Bad

  • A tad bit of extra thumb material
  • Palms are not water-resistant, so don’t get caught in a downpour
  • May get cold on long descents at lower temperatures

The Bottom Line: Santini Acquazero Vega Gloves

The Acquazero Vega Winter Gloves are a simple option in a sea of bulky and overcomplicated winter gloves. No, they aren’t for the coldest of temperatures, but hold their own in the 40-60° range. With excellent tactility and a stretchy, natural fit, I’m digging these gloves for the transition period between winter and spring here in Utah.

Buy Now: Visit SantiniSMS.it

About Author

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Jason quickly developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 -- sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.

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