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Head to Head Comparison: A Mother’s Day Dish

by Enticio Handwear on
Head to Head Comparison: A Mother’s Day Dish
Mother’s Day is almost upon us. I remember how my Mother used to say, “If you cannot say anything nice, say nothing at all.” However, an incredible amount of thought, design and innovation goes into every Enticio product (Mom would be proud), and that provides valuable information for people who might be evaluating Enticio for the first time. So in this case, a Mother’s pride wins out over a Mother’s advice; and with the best of intentions, we will discuss the issues we have had over the years with artist gloves generally (no names) and how Enticio products go beyond what used to be the status quo. So, if you pardon the pun... the gloves are off.

We’ll begin by saying something nice about the competition; they are both the inspiration and the reason that Enticio exists. As a creative person with an artistic bent, I was an early adopter of tablets many years ago, and I had high hopes for the future. Then after years of broken promises, I had a drawer full of styluses that didn’t work and were never going to. And like many of you, I discovered artist gloves but I couldn’t help but wonder why everyone wasn’t wearing them until I bought one and then another one and the sad reality set in. They were all s***t (Sorry, Mom). And her words still resonate in my head, “so, do you think you can do better?” She would challenge me that way and I would say, “Yes, better by quite a bit.”

Well, I started making a list of what I would do differently, which is another way of saying, a list of what is wrong with existing glove designs.

The most obvious was the fit. Many designs are one-size-fits-all where they depend on stretchy material for it to fit the hand. Others do have sizing but still rely mostly on compression as the main mechanism for achieving a fit; this simply seemed like a design compromise to minimize complexity and cost. Normally, whenever compression is used on the human body, it should be for a medical reason. In fact, constricting parts of the body over time can lead to fatigue, restricted blood flow and result in permanent nerve damage. We didn’t want anything to do with that, so we expanded our available base sizes that included a small amount of fabric stretch. Since our bodies change sizes almost daily, we saw the need for a fully adjustable strap that could take that extended base sizing and adjust even further to achieve the perfect fit for the wearer - every day. We didn’t want any of the typical solutions for straps because art is not hiking, construction, tennis or golf. These materials can be effective but they are often crude solutions that are noisy, stiff and uncomfortable; that’s not Enticio.

Figuring out how to fasten a strap turned out to be much harder than you would think. We didn’t want a buckle as it wouldn’t be convenient or flexible enough. The Black Dragon clasping system is in a class by itself; in fact, Enticio holds several patents for this unique mechanism. Since the goal is to deliver high quality in a simple, easy to use design, we spent a lot of time designing what might be the perfect solution. First, magnets don’t wear out the way other mechanisms do and by integrating them into the construction of the high-quality top-grain leather strap, this is not some clasp sourced from another manufacturer that is simply tacked on to an existing glove. Instead, we integrated it into the manufacturing process to complete the system with an extremely attractive and durable top piece that is custom manufactured for the Empirium glove. The innovation of the top piece is that it achieves a solid fit without the need for punching adjustment holes in an otherwise, unblemished strap. No holes, means you don’t have one hole that is too loose and the next one - too tight; that doesn’t happen with Enticio.

Next, the material was critical and needed to be checked as fit for purpose; we have a whole article on Hapton™ fabric alone. Artist gloves got their start with traditional media to guard against smudging but it remains a surprise, just how many gloves still do not work with touchscreen tablets and perhaps never will.

For some vendors, they get a lot of attention with photos of all the printed patterns on the fabric, what they don’t tell you is that while looking at a photo can be lovely, you are likely to experience buyer’s remorse later. Why? Well, only certain types of inks can be used to print on fabric and you have to use specific fabrics that are meant to work with the inks and preserve the colors. For Enticio, it imposes severe compromises in both the feel and performance of the materials and the final garment. That is not even the worst of it; the dealbreaker is that touchscreens have very thin and delicate oleophobic coatings on the surface and inks printed on fabric make the surface of the fabric abrasive. It’s not good enough to just know how to make a glove, you need to know the tech. For example, we already know that even with normal use, these coatings will experience wear and there is no way to prevent those printed fabrics from prematurely, permanently damaging your screen. Of course you will never prove that a $12 glove ruined your $2500 tablet - good luck with that.

There is a lot more to talk about but the point is clear. No other brand comes close to delivering such a superior and useful artist glove for the modern digital artist. No one thinks as much about even the smallest details to such a degree that your experience will be unlike any other. That is the Enticio Way, to make your experience extraordinary - so that our best work can elevate yours and help you produce work that would make any Mother proud. Be well.
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