The North Face - Women's ETIP Touchscreen Gloves (2013)

3_5stars

The North Face – Women’s ETIP Touchscreen Gloves (2013)

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Price: $45.00

The North Face ETIP liner gloves are light, quality glove liners with two-finger conductivity. These well tailored gloves, while expensive at around $45.00, are a step up from their 2012 line.

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Editor’s Note: This model has been discontinued, though the 2014-15 model (which is much, much better) is available here. A review of the newer model will be posted soon.  Make sure to look for the gloves WITHOUT the patches on the fingers (they appear to have some older models mixed in, which are not as good).  The 2014-15 versions do not have the silver patches on the thumb and index finger.

The North Face ETIP liner gloves are light, quality glove liners with two-finger conductivity.  These well-tailored gloves, while expensive at around $45.00, are a step up from their 2012 line.

Conductivity

The conductivity of the ETIPs is relatively good.  Although the touchscreen pads on the index finger and thumb of each hand don’t fit quite as well as the rest of the glove, the silver metallized nylon does a very good job of conducting the user’s natural charge.

Construction

These liners are superbly constructed.  From the quality stitching to the smart choice in (most) materials, The North Face has made a solid, comfortable liner glove that will help to keep a user’s hands warm while snowboarding or skiing.  The size large, which I typically wear, were a bit big for my hands, so I went down to a medium.  That said, even with my fingers not particularly snug in the large, the gloves still worked surprisingly well on my touchscreen phone.

Warmth  and Dexterity

As far as liners go, these are relatively warm.  The ETIPs could double as regular gloves for temperatures down to about 40-45 degrees Fahrenheit, but if it’s much colder, or if you’re going to be out for a long time, you’ll want to either slip something warmer over them or go with a thicker glove.  That said, their lighter design makes moving your fingers to text, take a picture, answer a call, or interact with any number of apps easy and precise.

Design

One very nice feature of the gloves is the silicone grip material on the palm.  This is often overlooked by manufacturers and should be mandatory for gloves that are designed specifically to handle slick touchscreen devices.

The aesthetic design of the gloves could be improved by altering two elements.

First, the gloves incorporate a couple of ‘high-tech’ logos which clash with the smart, stylish design and craftsmanship of the liners.  A somewhat generic silver power button logo is emblazoned on each of the index fingers and ‘E-TIP’ is stitched up the side of each thumb in large block letters.  Design elements like these can sometimes come across like flames painted on the side of a car – just because something says it is high-tech (or fast), does not mean that it necessarily is.  While the ETIPs certainly fulfill their promise of enabling users to interact with their phones, they look a bit over the top in parts.  This is particularly disappointing since the rest of the glove is so well designed.  On the other hand, for some users these may be exactly what they are looking for in terms of style.

Second, the conductive tips themselves, which are made of a silver metallized nylon are bright silver, are a loud reminder that these are touchscreen gloves.  A couple of years ago, it was common practice to have bright silver fingertips on touchscreen gloves.  This happened in part because it was difficult to dye the conductive threads and also served as an inexpensive advertisement for people who were unfamiliar with the new product.  Today, however, there are alternatives to this practice that would fit more holistically with the rest of the gloves.

Overall Value and Conclusion

While The North Face ETIP liners are well-made and functional, at around $45.00 they are relatively expensive as compared to many other liners.  Consumers may wish to wait one more year for the design to evolve and the price to drop.  That said, these gloves work relatively well and could be exactly what some people are looking for.

Specs

Materials

Shell

  • 93% polyester
  • 7% elastane

Conductive finger tips

  • 100% silver metallized nylon

Styles

  • premier purple (women’s)
  • metallic silver (women’s)
  • black (women’s)
  • vaporous grey (women’s)

 Sizing

  • Extra Small
  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large

Gender

Washing

  • spot clean with warm water and mild detergent
  • air dry
  • do not wash
  • do not iron
  • do not bleach
  • do not machine dry
  • do not dry clean

About The North Face

Named for the coldest, most unforgiving side of a mountain, The North Face began more than 40 years ago  in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood.  Founded by two hiking enthusiasts who resolved to follow their passions The North Face went from small retailer of high-performance climbing and backpacking equipment to a massive company that is in the forefront of everything outdoors for climbers, mountaineers, extreme skiers, snowboarders, endurance runners, and explorers everywhere.

Conclusion Rating
Conductivity
3 stars
Construction
5 stars
Warmth
2 stars
Dexterity
4 stars
Design
3 stars
Overall Value
3 stars

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