Walk into any gas station or auto shop, and you will see dozens of car wash mitts and sponges displayed on the racks. But which of these are actually good for your vehicle?
Obviously, any responsible car owner would want a wash mitt or a sponge that won’t damage the sensitive clear coat or car wax on the surface. You definitely don’t want any mitt or sponge residue on your paint job either.
Not all wash mitts and sponges are equally effective in getting your car clean without causing damage. Even if products are priced similarly, performance can vary between various brands.
It can certainly be a challenge to find out which car wash mitts and sponges perform well from the product descriptions alone. To make the process easy for you, we have reviewed the best mitts and sponges for cars in this article.
Scroll down to read the reviews about which products work the best. There are some buying tips listed as well.
- Features to Consider in Good Car Wash Mitts and Sponges
- Top 10 Best Car Wash Mitts and Car Wash Sponges in 2018
- 1. Chemical Guys MIC_493 Chenille Microfiber Premium Scratch-Free Wash Mitt
- 2. Relentless Drive Ultimate Car Wash Mitt – 2 pack Extra Large Size
- 3. Meguiar’s X3002 Microfiber Wash Mitt
- 4. BlueCare Automotive Premium Car Wash Mitt – 2-Pack
- 5. Viking 845100 Car Care Bug & Mesh Cleaning Wash Sponge
- 6. Mothers 968801 Premium Chenille Car Wash Mitt
- 7. Viking 844300 Long Pile Microfiber Car Wash Sponge
- 8. Relentless Drive Ultimate Microfiber Car Wash Sponge
- 9. Okayda Sheepskin Car Wash Mitts by Super Soft
- 10. Viking 424010 Easy Grip Sponge
- Guide to Buying the Best Car Wash Mitts and Sponges
Features to Consider in Good Car Wash Mitts and Sponges
Considering the sheer number of car wash sponges and mitts available these days, it’s important to understand the factors that distinguish the best from the subpar.
When shopping, look for these characteristics to make the best choice:
- The Material—The performance of the car wash mitt or sponge is largely determined by the material it’s made out of. You will mostly see microfiber products for mitts. You should read through the product descriptions to find out whether the material is suitable for your car and your requirements.
- Size—If you end up with a tiny sponge or a wash mitt, you can spend all day washing the car. Size matters, at least when it comes to car wash sponges and mitts.
- Durability—You can only receive the best value for your money if the product you buy is durable. Our reviews below will indicate how durable wash mitts and sponges listed are.
Top 10 Best Car Wash Mitts and Car Wash Sponges in 2018
This car wash mitt is made from a combination of chenille and microfiber, one of the best car wash mitt material around. This mitt is 70/30 microfiber.
The mitts are large and plush. The exact size is 12 by 8 inches.
The exterior is very soft. The mitts are designed to wash cars, trucks, RVs, trailers, or any similar vehicle.
The mitts are machine washable in low heat in a gentle cycle. The mitts are available in multiple colors, including blue, lime green, and black.
One of the biggest challenges when it comes to buying a great car wash mitt is choosing one that is soft and non-abrasive enough not to damage car wax. This Chemical Guys car wash mitt is just the product for this.
This mitt is made from fat and short microfiber noodles. The mitt is big and it has a great surface area to capture bucket loads of soap suds and water.
The material is lint-free and completely scratch-free. It works with any decent car wash soap and can be thrown in the washing machine for cleaning afterward.
The mitt can easily be worn thanks to the Velcro hook that gently encloses it around the wrist. These mitts are great for drying the car after washing because the material is super absorbent.
There’s a downside to being super absorbent. The mitt can absorb a lot of water and start to feel really heavy. That may become cumbersome when washing or drying a large vehicle.
Another issue is the elastic cuff. It secures well, but the elastic can easily get stretched or torn in the washing machine.
It’s hard to find a softer or more absorbent car wash mitt in the market. This is the perfect product for car owners who want a scratch-free mitt that won’t damage the car wax or the paint.
These mitts are made from double-sided chenille microfiber. The microfiber ratio is 80/20.
The extra large mitts size at 8 by 11 ½ inches. The material is lint-free, scratch-free, and super absorbent.
The mitt doesn’t have a waterproof inner lining, so you won’t be able to prevent your hands getting wet.
The Relentless Drive mitts are machine-washable.
Relentless Drive car wash mitts are arguably one of the best rated in this category. These mitts are popular and fans rave about their performance.
The wash mitts are super absorbent. The reason is the material—chenille microfiber—which is known for its high absorbency compared to fabric or sheepskin.
The mitts are also massive. So anyone can comfortably wear these and get even a large vehicle shiny and clean in no time.
The mitts are machine washable but won’t cause any lint problems. Using these products on car wax is perfectly safe as these won’t leave any lint, swirls, or scratches.
Because of the non-abrasiveness, these mitts are great for dusting and drying vehicles as well. The mitts are easy to wear thanks to the interior lining.
The mesh interior lining won’t’ keep your hands dry, but it will make cleaning easier. It’s relatively quick to put the hand in and take it out because of the lining.
Unfortunately, these mitts don’t come with a clasp. There’s an elastic cuff that should fit around any wrist. There’s no Velcro securing hook like the Chemical Guys mitt.
The elastic cuff though is thick and large. It can withstand several washing cycles, but would naturally lose elasticity.
Other than that, these mitts hardly have any downsides. You may want to skip the regular size and purchase the extra large anyway because the regular size could be too small for most hands.
It’s hard to beat the Relentless Drive car wash mitts in terms of quality. These mitts perform wonderfully on a consistent basis.
There are only one or two minor downsides. Otherwise, this product offers excellent value even for the slightly high price.
The Meguiar’s X3002 is designed with microfiber material without any chenille or other material mixed in. The mitt doesn’t have any standard noodles or strands.
This mitt is only available in one size at 8 by 10 inches. It’s only available in white.
The mitt is machine washable. It doesn’t have an interior lining. It’s securable around the hands with the elastic cuff.
Meguiar’s X3002 is different from most other microfiber mitts in that it lacks any type of noodle-like strands. This mitt has furry strands and is noticeably rougher than the others.
While soft car wash mitts are wonderful for gently cleaning a car’s surface without causing scratches, it can ultimately be detrimental to cleaning. Soft mitts don’t catch all the dust stuck on grooves and other non-waxed parts of the exterior.
This rough car wash mitt can certainly clean all parts of a car’s exterior, excluding the wheels, superbly. The white color makes captured dirt stand out.
The large size allows this car wash mitt to be amazingly absorbent. However, unlike other large mitts, this one doesn’t get heavy after absorbing massive amounts of suds.
It doesn’t have a Velcro clasp. The mitt secured with an elastic cuff that’s really thick and well-made. The elastic will last several washing cycles.
The minimal downsides include the mitt staining after some use. Also, there’s only one size available. If you have small hands, this mitt maybe a bit too big.
The Meguiar’s X3002 is one of the best car wash mitts money can buy thanks to many benefits and minimal downsides.
This mitt cleans as promised. The downsides associated are negligible. All in all, this is a great product worth buying.
The BlueCare wash mitts are made from high-density microfiber chenille. Each wash mitt contains 80 percent polyester and 20 percent polyamide.
The mitts have little fingers roughly an inch long and an inch in size. Density is about 1,500 gsm.
The polishing cloth included is made from 100 percent polyester with a density of 220 gsm. It measures at 16 by 16 inches.
The microfiber cloth as about 88 percent of water absorption ability. The polishing cloth has similar water absorbency levels.
These wash mitts are lint-free, scratch-free, machine-washable, and suitable for both wet or dry use. All in all, these mitts are perfect for just about every use a microfiber mitt can have.
The mitts dry quickly after each use and are mildew resistant. The advantage here is that the mitts can retain shape even when using with harsh chemicals.
The mitts won’t lose shape under UV lights either. Plus, the brand offers a lifetime warranty for the product.
The caterpillar fingers can work wonders on dirt, dust, bird dropping, pollen, and other grime that can get in a car. The material is very gentle on the car wax.
The mitts are adequately large to suit even larger than average hands. However, the mitts don’t have an interior lining, so that means these are unsuitable for use in winter.
The mitts are machine-washable. But they will start to come apart after 15 to 20 washes. Don’t expect the mitts to last too long.
The BlueCare mitts certainly offer excellent value for the money. The product delivers as promised and even comes with a lifetime warranty.
The Viking car wash sponge is made with a standard sponge covered in a microfiber mesh. The sponge is reusable and washable.
Nothing works better than this Viking sponge for getting rid of bugs and tree sap off your car. You can use the sponge to scrub off the bugs without worrying about the sponge damaging the car wax, paint, or scratching a window.
Regular sponges, typically used for washing dishes, may be too abrasive for use on vehicles with sensitive paint. That’s why the Viking sponge is covered in a microfiber mesh.
There are about two mesh layers to optimize the scrubbing power of the sponge. The microfiber is very gentle and won’t harm the vehicle exterior.
This sponge is clear coat safe. You can wash and reuse the sponge as many times as you want.
The sponge inside the mesh no cheap sponge either. It’s highly dense, so this sponge holds more water than cheap dish sponges.
For best results, use the sponge with a bug remover made for vehicles. This sponge should work on just about any type of bug.
To completely remove any bug or tree sap residue, use some warm water with the sponge. Dry use is possible but might not remove everything.
It should be noted that this microfiber sponge is great for removing bio residue, but it might not be useful for much else. It’s not the best for removing dust or dirt off the car.
There’s no better sponge or mitt for removing bugs and tree sap residue off cars than this Viking sponge. It’s a must-have during the bug season for any vehicle.
The wash mitt is made with microfiber chenille stands. Like all microfiber chenille brands, this wash mitt is highly absorbent.
The mitt is extra absorbent and holds a lot of suds and water. The mitt is safe for machine washing.
The mitt has a universal size that’s designed for any type of hand. However, if your hands are larger than usual, you can choose the large size mitt that costs a slightly more.
Design-wise, the Mothers microfiber mitt stands its own against the higher end brands. It’s gentle and non-abrasive.
It’s lint-free as well. The mitt does a really good job of picking up grime and dust on a vehicle instead of dragging it around the car paint.
This wash mitt can be safely used without worrying about damaging car wax. The material is soft, but not too soft so that dust gets left on the car.
It is absorbent for sure. But most other brands in the same price range can hold a lot more water than this one.
It also lacks an interior lining to make it waterproof. That’s not an issue in the warm months, but you might not want to use this in winter.
There are no major downsides other than the fact that this mitt is rather standard. You can expect a decent car washing experience.
This is not a fancy mitt. But if you want an affordable and a reasonably well-performing car wash mitt, then this should be one of your top considerations.
This sponge has a high density foam core, or the sponge part, covered in a microfiber cloth. The microfiber is made with Supersoft technology.
The sponge dents inwards from the side from the middle. It makes the shape easier to grip than regular rectangular sponges.
The microfiber cloth exterior is sewn around the sponge. It’s not a sleeve that can be removed.
This sponge is washable and reusable.
Viking is combining the effectiveness of microfiber with this particular sponge. It feels like a regular sponge, but has a microfiber cover.
The sponge is highly absorbent thanks to the high-density foam that’s inside. It will hold loads of car wash shampoo or water as you like.
Thanks to the microfiber exterior, this sponge is largely non-abrasive. It’s perfectly safe to use on the clear coat of the car.
The sponge is also lint free. The hourglass-like shape makes it easy to grip with ease.
This sponge is grip-able by the whole hand, who washing is easy. It’s not at all like holding a small dish sponge.
The design works wonderfully for picking up dirt and grime off the car. A word of caution, though, the grime really sticks to the microfiber cloth.
If you don’t wash the sponge properly, the dirt it picks up may end up scratching the vehicle. It’s recommended to inspect the sponge for grit before each use.
The large size of the sponge can pose a problem too. Don’t expect it to be flexible enough to get to the nooks and corners of windows or the hook.
This sponge is relatively affordable and overall a great product for washing your car. It’s ergonomically designed, highly absorbent, and importantly, gentle on vehicles.
This sponge is made from foam covered in a microfiber mesh. And around the mesh are chenille microfiber caterpillar strands like a wash mitt.
The mitt is machine washable. It’s lint-free and scratch-free.
This Relentless Drive car wash sponge is probably the most absorbent wash pad you can find on the market. Not only does it have a foam core, it also has chenille microfiber fingers.
The strands add to the absorbency and cleaning power of the sponge. You can use this sponge for both wet and dry cleaning.
That’s a major plus considering most sponges are too abrasive for dry wash use. But the microfiber of this sponge makes it safe to use on clear coat without water or solution.
This sponge is recommended for cleaning bug or tree sap residue from cars. It can work just as well as the classic Viking sponge mentioned above.
However, if you just want a sponge to remove bug residue, the microfiber fingers can get in the way. It’s difficult to scrub hard with the fingers flailing around.
One major advantage of this sponge is that it’s machine-washable, unlike other sponges. But be careful when shoving this in the spin dry because the sponge might lose its shape.
Keep in mind that the microfiber really picks up grime and dirt. The particles can stick and cause scratches if you don’t occasionally rinse the sponge when cleaning.
This sponge is really great for two things that sponges and wash mitts alone can’t accomplish. The mesh sponge removes bug residue, while the microfiber chenille fingers deliver a swirl-free wash finish.
Despite the slightly high price, this sponge is great for a thorough cleaning of the car during the bug season.
This wash mitt is made from premium-grade Merino lamb’s wool skins. The fur is dense and plush on the mitt.
The mitt is shaped kind of like an oven mitt with a separate protrusion for the thumb. The size is relatively large, similar to an oven mitt.
The Okayda sheepskin wash mitt feels like cotton wool in your hands. It’s ultra soft and is superb for light scrubbing jobs.
The natural material is extra gentle on cars. It’s perfect for expensive vehicles like Benzes. You can rely on the fur to not cause any scratches
There’s one downside to the natural sheepskin. There will some minor wool residue that comes off occasionally. You can avoid lint on your car by gently flapping it gently before using.
The wool does a great job of removing dust. It gently glides on top of the car once you have dipped it in a soapy solution.
The biggest advantage of the wool is that it doesn’t retain dirt. There’s less risk of scratching, unlike with microfiber chenille.
One downside is that you have to wash the mitt carefully. It has to be rinsed with cold water and air dried.
You can put it in the washing machine, but don’t expect the mitt to last after more than 5 or 6 washes. It can come apart easily.
The overall design of the wash mitt is really convenient too. The thumb protrusion definitely makes it easy to use compared to singular wash mitts.
If you are really particular about car care, then this natural wool wash mitt would be a perfect choice. It’s super gentle and doesn’t retain particles, which is something that usually comes up as an issue with microfiber chenille.
Though the material is real sheepskin, the price is quite economical. So it’s really a bargain.
This product only contains a sponge. It’s not covered in anything. The sponge has a bone shape with dents in the middle to make it easy to grip when washing.
The sponge is made from high-density foam with plenty of air bubbles. It’s highly absorbent as a result.
The size of the sponge is large. It’s 9 inches long and 4.5 inches wide.
There’s absolutely nothing fancy about this sponge. Therein lies its usefulness. If you don’t want any fancy mitts or sponges covered in microfiber, this would definitely do the trick.
The sponge is quite large so you can wash the car quickly. It’s great for both light and heavy scrubbing.
This sponge can get rid of dirt that sticks to the car. You can remove dust and bug residue at the same time.
The sponge is exceptionally absorbent and creates plenty of soap suds. It can hold loads of solution for quick and convenient cleaning.
The sponge doesn’t need to be washed by you can rinse it and squeeze to dry. This product is durable and will last a long time.
One of the issues with sponges is that sometimes they don’t retain the shape well. But this sponge is quite good at retaining its original shape, even after multiple washes.
The downside is that the sponge is not necessarily gentle and nonabrasive. It may cause scratches if dirt gets trapped inside.
This sponge is perfect if you are looking for a scrubbing wash pad and not an ultra-gentle cleaning mitt. It’s affordable and gets the job done in no time.
Guide to Buying the Best Car Wash Mitts and Sponges
Here are some useful tips to keep in mind when you are shopping for a great car wash mitt or a sponge:
How to Choose between a Mitt and a Sponge
We review both car wash mitts and car wash sponges in this article, as some buyers may have questions about how to choose between the two.
Though both mitts and sponges wash your car essentially, these products serve different functions. Here are some general uses unique to mitts and sponges:
Mitts come with caterpillar strands or those thin noodle-like protrusions. These protrusions wipe away dust and increase the surface area for absorbing water.
Mitts are great for a swirl-free wash and some light scrubbing. Mitts are not great for getting things that are stuck to the car, like bugs or bird poop.
You don’t have to hold the mitt when washing. You can essentially wear it and run your hands all over the car.
Sponges, on the other hand, have to be held and cleaned. Sponges are best at getting rid of hard-stuck residue, like dead bugs.
If you want a big scrubbing job done, then a sponge would be great. However, sponges are not as gentle as car wash mitts.
Some sponges may damage the exterior of your car, particularly the clear coat or wax. But some sponges have microfiber covers to prevent this problem.
Choosing between a Mitt and a Sponge
Ultimately it comes down to your requirements. But, if you generally want a gentle washing job done, choose a mitt. If you want to scrub away dirt and residue, choose a sponge.
It’s recommended to keep both in your car wash kit to tackle any scenario.
Understand the Different Material
Here are brief explainers for the different types of material you will encounter when buying car wash mitts and sponges:
This is a mixed material very commonly used when making car wash mitts. The vast majority of car wash mitts you see in the market today are made from microfiber chenille.
Microfiber is a synthetic fiber. This material is known for its no abrasiveness and the ability to retain water.
Chenille is a type of weave on fibers. It has the feel of velvet. Microfiber material with a chenille weave creates a smooth surface with fine fibers.
This is great for cleaning your car clean off just about anything. Microfiber chenille lifts dirt and grime and doesn’t let it move around the surface when washing.
This material can also hold loads of water and soapy suds. The material is safe to machine wash too.
While most wash mitts are microfiber chenille entirely, some car wash sponges will be covered in a microfiber mesh or a cloth. This can prevent abrasiveness of the sponge foam.
The best alternative to synthetic microfiber is natural wool like lambskin and sheepskin. Though typically expensive, you can find rather affordable natural wool wash mitts these days.
You will only find natural wood wash mitts, not sponges. Sponges are typically not covered with natural wool.
Natural wool is extremely gentle on any car surface. You can be assured that the material won’t damage car wax or coating.
Wool also picks up dirt and dust but the particles don’t always stick to the material. If stuck, the particles may cause scratches.
The biggest problem with natural wool is durability. These products rarely last years. Maintenance is difficult too, considering how sensitive the material is.
Natural wool may also leave some lint behind. This is not an issue with microfiber chenille.
Simply put, microfiber is convenient, while natural wool is safe to use. You can choose either depending on your needs.
How to Choose the Right Size Mitt or Sponge
Mitts and sponges come in various sizes. But you will see some listed as regular or large.
When buying, always check the exact dimensions of the sponge or the mitt. Some regular-sized mitts may be too small for people with large hands.
The mitt may also perfectly fit the hand. In that case, washing properly may be difficult.
If possible, measure the length and width of the hand and compare with the dimensions of the car wash mitt.
Sponges should generally be large enough to grip comfortably. Visualize the size of the mitt and you will know if its large enough for your needs.
Avoid Generic Sponges or Mitts
Some sponges and mitts are made for household cleaning jobs. Avoid using these products for your car.
The main reason for this is that household wash mitts and sponges are not designed to protect car wax or car paint.
Car wash mitts and sponges are.
If it’s not for automotive use, avoid using the product on your car. You can use car care products for household cleaning, though.
Is Absorbency Level All that Important?
Generally speaking, wash mitts and sponges are all absorbent. But should you aim for a high absorbency product?
You can expect high absorbency levels with a material like a microfiber and sponge foam. The density of the products may make some more absorbent than others.
But don’t pay extra for any wash mitt or sponge claiming to be super-absorbent. You do want the product to hold plenty of water and suds.
But you will need to rinse the sponge or mitt occasionally to dislodge any trapped particles. If you don’t, the particles may scratch your car.
Therefore, even a super-absorbent product has to be squeezed during the washing. Don’t aim for something you can use on the whole car without rinsing or squeezing out at least once. It would only increase the risk of damage to your car.
Seasonal Use is Important
If you want to wash your car in winter, you may want to buy a wash mitt with an interior waterproof lining. It will prevent cold water from seeping onto your skin.
However, most car wash mitts lack a waterproof lining. You may have to spend extra on that.