NRS Toaster Mitts vs Level 6 Mitts

I’d like to hear from anyone who has tried both of these. Trying to decide which to buy. My hands get cold in gloves, especially the right one, as I have some nerve damage. Wondering about the pros and cons of these two.

Thanks in advance,


Hi there,

I saw a review of Level 6 on BoaterTalk just the other day…

You might want to post there and see. Also, the reply there has an interesting suggestion for a modification of either mitt…they are doing ww and might be more concerned about needing quick dexterity, but I thought it was an interesting thing to do. On ACC, Charlie D had some mitts - not sure but they were probably NRS. I can email him and ask him for his thoughts. I’m sure he wouldn’t have tried both, but you could get his opinion on the ones he tried.


Have Both…

– Last Updated: Jan-06-09 10:17 AM EST –

NRS uses 3 mm top and 2.5 mm for palm. L6 uses 2 mm all around. NRS is warmer. NRS has precurved shape which helps with grip fatique. L6 does not but it's thinner neo so it doesn't matter much.

NRS seam along thumb and forefiner is right in line with paddle grip and thus succeptible to wear. Parts of the stitching wore out at 2 plus season of use, requiring restitching and sealing with neo glue. NRS seam appears out of the way. Haven't used it long enough to say much about the durability.

Right now, I am more inclined towards NRS but I use mine in colder water temps than yours. I have L6 as a backup.


Another mitt option
Dakine cold water neo mitt. Can’t review - too warm here!

Listed with windsurfing gear on their site so grip and durability might be decent. Similar shape to NRS - but smooth skin for reduced evaporative cooling (NRS has been asked for this - but so far no - and heard they may be discontinuing their mitts) .

And I prefer the Level 6
As I find them warmer. Why? Because they are waterproof. The seams are not stitched, but welded and the cut is such that you may find them immersion proof as well for shorter periods of time. A dry hand is a warmer hand.

The Toaster Mitts are good, but when it comes to winter paddling, I always use my Level 6 Mitts.


– Last Updated: Jan-06-09 5:17 PM EST –

the NRS mitts are stitched AND glued to be "waterproof." My experience with neo products -- booties, gloves, mitts, multi wetsuits -- is that stitching combined with glueing makes for a longer lasting seam.

If I just stick the NRS mitts underwater, just below the cuff, there is no water entry. However,
the reality for me is that neither is "waterproof" since I surf paddle in the winter and am rolling quite a bit. Thus, water seeps in through the cuff area anyway. The rate of seepage and the actual thickness of the neo come into play for warmth.


Looks Good…
does not describe thickness though. Those long cuffs would not be a problem for me since I use wetsuits when surfing. But I can see how they would be problematic or PITA for those using drysuits/drytops.


Have both
The Level six seems to be less prone to leakage. They are so well sealed around the wrist that they practically are airtight, let alone watertight. They are fairly thin, so I’m curious as to how durable they will prove to be. Toasty, especially when you toss a chemical handwarmer in.

The NRS Toaster Mitts have needed a liberal application of Aquaseal on the seams. They were leaking water through the seam within 10 trips. The seams are located in a very bad spot, right on the paddle, so they will wear. I also found the velcro wrist strap to be unnecessary and a pain in the ass with a dry suit. Be advised, the NRS mitts run really large. And the Level 6 seem to run fairly small. If I could only have one or the other, I’d probably take the Level 6’s because they seem to be drier. But they are both suitable for cold weather paddling.

Two more options.
Hot and hotter…

5mm Thaw Claw:

6mm Oven Mitt

Have no idea the thickness on the Dakine mitt, or what the palm material is. Looks easy to shorten though.

Trade Off…
tried a 5 mm claw style. Warmer but hand fatique and lack of feel for the paddle become a problem real quick. Not good when rolling is a given rathern than an option.

I think 3mm in the palm area (in a precurve shape) is as thick as I would go.