They finally failed but they did NOT fall apart
Stories about Gina and the Tuff Chix Gloves

Tuff Chix Pink Winter Fleece Gloves are one of my favorite products. If you've been following HoofPrints for very long you know that I don't suffer products that fail to perform. I test everything that comes through the door to make sure it is, indeed, exactly as I am representing it.

IronClad's Tough Chix fleece gloves aren't your average girly pink gloves that you'd pick up at Wal-Mart, wear for a season and then toss because they've fallen apart. These are engineered by a manufacturer known for it's durable men's work gloves. They applied all that experience making attractive, good fitting gloves to these women's gloves.
Shown here are two pair that I have been wearing since 2011. The same two pair that are pictured in the product listing here. One pair is the original sample that I ordered from the manufacturer to try out. The 2nd pair was returned by a customer who wore them for a while and then claimed they didn't keep her hands warm. Now, to clarify: if you live somewhere like North Dakota and are doing chores for hours in -20 degree weather, these are not the gloves for you. But for the rest of us who don't encounter such extremes these really fit the bill. They're soft, flexible, and give you a LOT of dexterity for a winter glove.
I can fasten all the necessary buckles needed to tack up and ride without taking them off. I can wrangle supplement bucket lids, dip and measure rations, coil up a muddy, recalcitrant hose - pretty much anything I need to do in the barn. And more: the sliding door to my barn gets stuck when the ground freezes. Because of the way it's situated, normal digging implements just won't work to clear out the extra dirt and gravel that's accumulated and is heaving up, blocking the way. The best way to do it is with my fingers. I hack at the frozen stuff with a pick to break it up, then rake it all out of the groove with my fingers. I'd say that it's expecting a lot for any gloves, but these have been doing it for 8 years.
Let's look closely at what failed on these 8 year old gloves. There are holes in the thumb and the middle finger. These are the exact spots that get torqued when I am wrestling the hose on and off of the hydrant. And because I have some ridiculous penchant for cross-threading, it's one of the most difficult tasks in my repertoire of barn chores.
What's more remarkable than the areas that failed, however, are the ones that are still holding up. Every single stitch on all of these gloves is exactly as it was when it left the factory.
The fabric is worn threadbare in spots, but it still washes up nice and fluffy; albeit a bit thinner.
The thoughtfully placed wear reinforcements have done their job; some have worn through, but must are still completely intact - the grippy tread has worn smooth in a few places, testament to 8 years of filling hay feeders, handling a manure fork, and petting horse and dog faces.
I know that there exists a special brush designed to clean crud out of velcro. These gloves have never seen such a luxury, the spots on the wrist are clogged with wadded up lint and dog hair, and they still do a fine job sticking tight to keep out drafts. Overall, for the stellar performance that these give, I'd expect them to be priced a lot higher than $24.
There's a summer version of the Tuff Chix Gloves; I wore out a pair of those as well.
These have their own BIG STORY, too. I hated them when I first got the sample. I had it in my stash for quite a while, and I was disappointed that the fingers were a little too long. They were the correct size for me, and I have average hands, so I was concerned that there would be fit problems with my customers. And the material they were made of is so thin - I didn't see how they could possibly hold up to hard use. This surprised me, as the Tuff Chix fleece winter version by the same manufacturer is perfect in every way - fit, durability, design - nothing could be any better. I figured they'd dropped the ball on these and tossed the sample back on the shelf after trying them on.

However, I had a big landscaping project to do that summer, so dug them out and forced myself to wear them - long fingers and all... By the time I finished I was sold. They'd molded to my hands and the finger length problem went away! I was cutting rose bushes and scooping debris out of landscaping rock - these performed perfectly. Now, I love them.

And after I'd worn them to do hot, sweaty work I had a different view of that fabric that I thought seemed flimsy. It's not flimsy, it's breathable. And that is a good thing. The backs are a nice mesh that lets the air through while still protecting your hands, there's a strip of extra padding over the knuckles. Palms are a suede-like synthetic that grips like leather but washes up a lot better. The sides of the fingers are another material - thinner, but still very protective. Very well designed and constructed gloves that beat leather hands down. Order here

My customers tell me these are great for grooming, building fence, baling hay and other farm chores, gardening, and even riding! There's a story about that time I wore Tuff Chix Chore Gloves to stack about 16 cords of firewood here
How I solved real horse problems using positive training methods
If you've never tried positive reinforcement training, DON'T do what I did. I viewed it as a curious novelty - but never gave it much consideration. After all, I'd kept horses my whole life and pretty much had everybody doing what I asked. Without carrying around treats and risking being bitten. (I came from the crowd that thought that hand feeding created biters.)
Billy's problem had to do with food.
Because his teeth are mostly gone, he needs his dinner of alfalfa pellets and beet pulp soaked in water to make it soft. The resulting mixture is apparently irresistible (to him) and a big tub of it weighs a ton (to me). Getting it into his stall and set down so he can eat it proper was a real chore, as he'd dive in as soon as he was able to reach it. Having a big lug of a horse head in the way and pushing down on an already heavy tub was more than I could handle. Read about how I fixed it here
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ABOUT THE COMPANY
Gina Keesling started HoofPrints in 1986 to provide helpful promotional materials for farrier husband Rob. Along the way she added a fun selection of horse and dog products geared toward women of a certain age. This newsletter is emailed to subscribers a few times a month. Watch for sales, stories (including the full story behind this goofy picture) and more.
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I have awesome customer service reps available 24/7 to take your order or answer questions at 765-724-7004, or email gina@hoofprints.com