Glove tested: Hirzl Soffft Flex (men’s) Retail price: $28.99 Material(s): Cabretta leather, lycra Colors: White with black Hand: Left, right Sizes: S, M, ML, L, XL
Available in cadet* fit: No Weather: All
About this glove: Unlike Hirzl’s flagship products, the Trust Control and Trust Feel models, the company’s Soffft Flex glove is not made from kangaroo leather. Nope, just good ol’ fashioned cabretta leather, made from the skin of straight-haired sheep (as opposed to the curly-haired kind).
And not just any cabretta, mind you, but “platinum cabretta.” We assume this is top-of-the-line stuff, since Hirzl appears to be alone in its use of the term. We’ll also assume that the two extra F’s in Soffft signify an exceptionally delicate material.
Where the Trust gloves are made with Hirzl’s proprietary “Grippp” technology, the Soffft Flex utilizes a secret formula called “Soffft.” According to Hirzl, this process produces a glove unsurpassed for long-lasting softness, moisture management and water repellency, among other benefits.
Like Hirzl’s other gloves, the Soffft Flex features pre-curved fingers, an extra-deep thumb cut and machine washability. It’s got lycra mesh and elastic on the backhand for breathability and flexible fit, with the standard perforations around the fingers.
A quick note on pricing: While Hirzl’s Soffft Flex glove retails for $28.99, it was available for $17.95 on the company’s website at the time of this review (2015).
Now, on with our analysis.
Appearance: This glove not only looks sharp, you can tell it’s well made. No loose threads, no excess leather in the joints, nice and taut at the cuff. Right out of the package, that inspires confidence.
Comfort: Exquisite – as a high-end cabretta glove should be. The Hirzl Soffft Flex earns those additional F’s with a splendidly smooth, cool and, yes, soft feel against the hand. Fit and flex are excellent as well, and the glove invites plenty of air through its finger holes and mesh component.
Feel: All that comfort would count for zip if the Soffft Flex failed this test. Good news: It passed with flying colors. While Hirzl’s cabretta isn’t quite as thin as, say, the FootJoy Pure Touch Limited, it’s in no way inferior. If you’re a player who prefers to take the glove off for shots inside 50 yards, you might change your mind after a few shots wearing a Soffft Flex glove.
Tackiness: Slippage is a non-issue. The Soffft Flex provides terrific traction in dry conditions, as any glove should (especially one at this price). We were more impressed with its ability to handle sweat and morning moisture. The glove absorbs and/or resists dampness with aplomb, freeing the mind from concern about a slick, unsecure hold.
Durability: A key selling point of all Hirzl gloves, the Soffft Flex beats its top-dollar competitors here. Where other premium cabretta gloves wear rather quickly, this one does not. Chalk it up to Hirzl’s 72-step tanning process or the tiny bit of extra thickness – for whatever reason, the Soffft Flex holds up very well.
Washing the glove occasionally is recommended. Make sure you use cold water and a gentle cycle, skip the fabric softener and DO NOT put it in the dryer, and it’ll come out good as new.
Bottom line: Hirzl’s got a good thing going with its Trust-brand gloves, but the Soffft Flex proves this Swiss company doesn’t need kangaroo pelt to make a great product. It’s right up there with the best cabretta mitts we’ve tried, yet more durable than most if not all its competitors. For that, Hirzl’s Soffft Flex glove gets a hearty golf clap.