11 Best Handlebar Tapes For A Good Grip And New Look In 2022

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If you’re someone who enjoys cycling or spends a minimum of ten hours a week holding onto your handlebar, then you should get your hands on the best handlebar tape. Whether maneuvering a tricky corner or a busy street, a handlebar tape helps you control your bike and gives it a new look. It helps give a good grip, superior comfort, and better vibration absorption.

Although casual riders often overlook this, those who are true bike enthusiasts know that handlebar tapes make a significant difference to the experience of riding a bike. Check out our post to see some of the best handlebar tapes.

11 Best Handlebar Tapes

1. Best For Reducing Vibration:Cinelli Cork Handlebar Tape

Cinelli Cork Handlebar Tape

Made of high content natural cork polyurethane base, the Cinelli gel strip is sold as two self-adhesive rolls sufficient to wrap one handlebar. This award-winning handlebar tape comes with padding that offers a comfortable hold. It has a simple, classic look, but may tear easily under heavy use.

Pros

  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Comes with Cinelli end caps in the box
  • Vibra-absorb gel layer helps reduces the vibration
  • Available in more than ten vibrant colors
  • Has a sweat-free finish

Cons

  • May require additional adhesives to stick the tape
  • Some may feel the tape to be thick

2. Best Durable:Lizard Skins Tape and Plugs Bar Tape

Lizard Skins Tape and Plugs Bar Tape

Used by professional athletes across the world, the handlebar tape is available in various colors and is made in the USA. It is made of quality materials and is one of the lightest tapes to fit any handlebar. This tape features a different grip pattern that exhibits smaller perforations. It has also been upgraded with high-quality polymer. To make an informed decision before buying, you can check out this video.

Pros

  • Durably built
  • Provides increased shock absorption
  • Has extra thickness for added comfort
  • Suitable for beginners and experts

Cons

  • Plugs may often pop out
  • Colors may fade upon usage

3. Best UV-Protected:Planet Bike Comfort Cork Handlebar Tape

Planet Bike Comfort Cork Handlebar Tape

The Planet Bike tape comes in a wide range of colors. It is super comfortable and can be used on all bikes, as it is easy to install. It allows you to place your hands comfortably on the handlebar and offers a great grip. It has EVA foam construction along with cork flacks that provide superior grip as well as comfort.

Pros

  • Made of soft, durable gel
  • Fade- and water-resistant
  • UV protected colors
  • Backed by lifetime warranty

Cons

  • May become tacky if tape comes in contact with water
  • May not be easy to tuck the tape once wrapped

4. Best Water-Resistant:TopCabin Bicycle Handlebar Tape

TopCabin Bicycle Handlebar Tape

Made of leather, this camouflage tape offers a comfortable grip. The bike tape comes in a variety of colors and camouflage design. It contains polyurethane that provides a superior grip and a padded cushion. The double-layer build adds more thickness that allows for a comfortable bike ride for a longer duration.

Pros

  • Has end plugs to prevent injuries
  • Fade- and water-resistant
  • Soft and durable gel construction
  • Double-sided adhesive keeps tape intact

Cons

  • May dry out
  • May require additional adhesive to keep tape intact

5. Best Anti-Slip:Domain Cycling Handlebar Tape

Domain Cycling Handlebar Tape

The extra long tape can be tightly wrapped on the handlebar for a good grip. It measures 94 x1.2 inches and has a cushioned EVA foam liner with vex-gel lining underneath for added comfort. This handlebar tape package includes handlebar end plugs, finishing tape, and adhesive backing for better wrapping.

Pros

  • Made of anti-slip polyurethane leather
  • Offers optimal grip in wet conditions
  • Can be used to customize bike
  • Backed by a 100% lifetime guarantee

Cons

  • Does not have adhesive backing
  • Cushioning may fade upon usage

6. Best Moisture-Absorbing:Cinelli Special Edition Handlebar Tape

Cinelli Special Edition Handlebar Tape

The special edition handlebar tape from Cinelli comes in several colors and peppy designs. The design is embossed throughout the tape, which has an adhesive backing that paves the way for easy wrapping. This tennis-style tape has a proven track record of providing better comfort and grip and comes with handlebar-end plugs.

Pros

  • Rubberized elastomeric compound gives a leather-like feel and look
  • Neon-colored end for safety and style
  • Absorbs perspiration well
  • Velvet finish gives it a visually appealing look

Cons

  • Strong adhesive may tear the tape if rewrapped
  • May not be adequately cushioned

7. Best For Control:Fizik Performance Bicycle Bar Tape

Fizik Performance Bicycle Bar Tape

This soft, classic handlebar tape is made of microtex, the thinnest and durable perforated leather-like material. It provides a smooth surface and has a thickness of two millimeters. Microtex offers pin-sharpening handling as well as control. The outer layer of the tape gives a matte finish and soaks up moisture well. It is one of the most affordable options available currently.

Pros

  • Suits all professional bikes
  • Specifically designed to offer superior grip and durability
  • Available in various colors and patterns
  • Comes with plugs to keep it intact

Cons

  • May not suit humid conditions
  • Tape may fold on itself, making it bumpy

8. Best For High-Tensile Strength:Kingou Carbon Fiber Handlebar Tape

Kingou Carbon Fiber Handlebar Tape

The Kingou handlebar tape is made of anti-slippery ABS plastic with a reflective metal coating. The soft, cushiony, sweat-absorbent material reduces shocks and minimizes hand fatigue during long rides. The tape is easy to install and does not have adhesive backing, making wrapping and unwrapping of the tape easy.

Pros

  • Made of PU leather on the surface along with EVA foam liner
  • Offers high breathability
  • Has high-tensile strength
  • Available in more than five colors

Cons

  • Length may be short for drop bars
  • May not be suitable for triathlons

9. Best Abrasion-Resistant:Brooks England Microfiber Bar Tape

Brooks England Microfiber Bar Tape

The polyurethane coating allows for maximum resistance and provides adequate protection against abrasion and moisture. It is also available in many colors to add a vibrant touch to your bicycle handlebar. This tape offers a classic look and feel to your bike handlebar and also has an adhesive backing.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Made of durable synthetic microfiber
  • Has vulcanized rubber end plugs
  • Durably built

Cons

  • Tape may have a dense finish
  • End caps may be larger than expected

10. Best For Long Rides:Newbaum’s Cloth Handlebar Tape

Newbaum's Cloth Handlebar Tape

A cloth handlebar tape from Newbaum, this adhesive tape is easy to wrap. It is available in a hue of colors, and the cotton material is known to absorb sweat well and keep your hands comfortable during the long rides. Each roll is 120 inches long and ¾-inch wide and features a V weave, instead of a W weave. The dye used to make these tapes are eco-friendly.

Pros

  • Made with a highly durable milled cotton cloth
  • Keep hands dry by absorbing excess sweat
  • Suitable for long rides
  • Retains grip even during wet weather

Cons

  • May lack color fastness
  • May not be long enough for a drop handlebar

11. Best Shock-Absorbent:Vinqliq Cork Handlebar Grip Tape

Vinqliq Cork Handlebar Grip Tape

Super soft handlebar tape offers superior grip, cushion and is stable. The skid-proof design helps you ride safely during rain or summers when your hands can get slippery. This handlebar tape has an adhesive backing and is suitable for most kinds of bikes. It comes with end plugs and finishing tapes.

Pros

  • Made of EVA foam
  • Offers good shock and sweat absorbency
  • Easy to install
  • Suitable for mountain, road, and BMX bikes

Cons

  • May have a stiff design
  • May be shorter than expected

How To Choose The Right Handlebar Tape? 

Here are a few things to consider to choose the best handlebar tape for your bike.

  • Material: Bar tape was earlier made from cork or leather materials, which are popular even today. They provide a better grip, comfort, and give the bike bar a classic look. However, these materials may have a few limitations compared to the newer synthetic materials like gel or foam. These modern materials provide improved comfort, are available in many colors and designs, and provide an all-weather grip.
  • Grip: The materials used and the handlebar tape’s texture play a major role in providing a good grip. Polyurethane or other synthetic materials can provide a good grip in both wet and dry conditions. Check for materials that offer breathability since they allow sweat and moisture to be absorbed and maintain the grip. 
  • Thickness: Handlebar tape comes in varied thicknesses to suit the comfort levels of different riders. Professional bikers prefer thin wraps that let them feel the rod and control it better. A thicker tape will reduce road buzz, provide more comfort, and decrease numbness in hands when the bike is ridden over long distances. A bar tape made of gel usually provides additional comfort and helps better control while riding on rough terrains, thus reducing fatigue.

Why Trust MomJunction?

We understand people’s necessities and requirements and ensure to bring high-quality products for our readers. So, we have done extensive research to bring you this list of the best handlebar tapes that are durable, long-lasting, and will fit your quality parameters. Each product is listed with detailed information about features and distinctive aspects. We have also provided a buying guide and a FAQ section for you to go through before selecting the right one.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Should I use a bar tape on my road bike?

Bar tape acts as a contact point on the bike. It provides a better grip, comfort during rides, absorbs sweat and allows smooth travel on rough terrains. If you plan to ride long distances on highways or other places on your road bikes, getting a bar tape can be a good idea.

2. How long does handlebar wrap last?

A typical handlebar tape lasts up to 15 years or roughly 250 miles of travel on a standard bike.

With a myriad of handlebar tapes available online, choosing the one that suits your requirements best could be challenging. To help you make the right choice, we have documented a list of the best handlebar tapes that offer a firm grip and help wick the moisture away. Based on your frequency of riding a bike, the terrain you drive in, and your design preferences, you may choose the most-suited type of bar tape to enjoy your bike rides comfortably and safely.

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Tikendrajit Pegu

Tikendrajit Pegu is a content contributor at MomJunction. An engineering graduate, he also holds a postgraduate degree in management from EDHEC Business School. He gravitates towards writing articles related to sports and adventure, and also has a good understanding of topics related to finance and economics.  Tikendrajit has over five years of corporate experience working on digital projects. Currently, he... more