Why do Gamers Use Hand Warmers? Answer by Pro Players

Do you love to see esports tournaments? Have you followed the teams and closely looked at them while playing. Then surely you will notice something strange. Something that you don’t use at your home while playing online games. It might be a small pouch or a small handheld device that the gamers use before or after their games. Yes, it is a hand warmer. Then the query is, why do gamers use hand warmers?

Gamers use Hand Warmers to make and keep their hands warm. They enhance blood circulation, thus lessening the coldness in your hands, preventing numbness, and also don’t make your fingers tired. So, ultimately, you will not feel any difficulty while gaming in moving your hands and fingers.

Why do Gamers Use Hand Warmers?
Gaming Player Warming His Hands with Warming Machine

If you’ve ever wondered about the significance of hand warmers in the world of professional gaming, go no further than this article.

Why do Gamers Use Hand Warmers?

Before going deep into why they are used, let’s first discuss what they are and how they work. Moreover, I will also discuss its positive and negative sides.

What is a Hand Warmer?

Either natural or technological-based products, hand warmers are specially designed for warming hands. These are not particular for gaming but primarily for outdoor activities. These are readily available in the gas stations and garage shops to keep your cold hands warm in the winter. They are also available in the online market, from simple to complex.

People use these hot packs for different purposes like

  • To dry their wet shoes and sock.
  • Uses in a sleeping bag for a warm, cozy sleep.
  • To keep their drinks hot.
  • It helps in cold conditions to prevent and immediately treat hypothermia.
  • To treat their soar muscles.
  • For immediate treatment of their headache and migraine.
  • To keep their batteries warm.

What are 5 Different Types of Hand Warmers?

Some people categorize hand warmers into two basic ones, while others in three categories. If you read them thoroughly, you will find five types of hand warmers with different materials and working processes which I’ll discuss later. Types of hand warmers are

  1. Air Activated: These are disposable products most commonly used by gamers.
  2. Saturated Solution: Reusable items generate heat, which cools and crystallizes for a second use.
  3. Lighter Fuel: These products are refillable but cause carbon monoxide production due to fluid combustion.
  4. Battery Powered: These are rechargeable, cost-effective, long-lasting, without any chemical releasing process, and ecologically beneficial.
  5. Charcoal: These cause carbon monoxide and waste and pose serious health issues to the user.

What contents are in Hand Warmers?

Although different hand warmers are available in the market, I’ll discuss the content and composition.

Air Activated:

The first is the content list of the most commonly used type, i.e., disposable air-activated. This product contains iron powder, cellulose, activated carbon (activated charcoal), sodium chloride (salt), and vermiculite.

Saturated Solution:

This product contains sodium acetate solution dissolved in water. The addition of hot water dissolves additional sodium acetate, making it super-saturated. On the other hand, this solution also cools down quicker than precipitation.

Lighter Fuel:

Mostly, manufacturers use light petroleum distillate fluid. This fluid acts as a catalytic heater, breaking down molecules and creating heat through a catalyzed chemical process; this is done by combustion (ignition) of petroleum distillate fluid.

Battery Powered: 

This product comes with rechargeable batteries. Functionality-wise, battery-powered products are relatively straightforward. Their heat is generated using an electrically resistive heating element attached to a rechargeable battery.

Heating levels are not adjustable on primary machines. It’s possible to control the gadget’s heat on more advanced models. For the most part, these warmers have a working life of roughly six to twelve hours per charge, depending on the heat output. Once you’ve used all the battery’s capacity, you have to plug the device back in and charge it again.


This product is not preferable, as it needs burning charcoal; actual combustion occurs that releases carbon monoxide. It is a long charcoal rod-like product; you have to hit its ends to begin the burning process and then set it into the covered unit, similar to the sunglasses case made of metal. This cover distributes the heat throughout without burning. Close the cover to use it properly.

How do These Hand Warmers Work?

How do These Hand Warmers Work?
A pro gaming player is warming his hand via a warmer

The next question that comes to everyone’s mind is how to use hand warmers and how they work? Because most of them contain chemical reactions or combustion, everyone is cautious about their safety.

Firstly, the hand warmers are not too hot to harm your hands, except the battery ones can be exploded if you overcharge them. Those working on the combustion principle only produce carbon monoxide, so you must use it in ventilated rooms.

Let’s discuss the most used hand warmer; the pouch’s operation is as follows:

Air-activated hand warmers have a microporous pouch to let the air enter and start the chemical reaction. As it contains air-activated components, the reaction immediately occurs once the air enters the bag.

You require the oxidizing process to occur, so you need the Charcoal to retain the water. While Sodium Chloride acts as a catalyst, it also acts as a thermally conductive substance. More often known as rust, iron oxide is the byproduct of the reaction between iron powder and oxygen in the air. In addition to generating heat, Iron Oxide also emits light. The last chemical is Vermiculite, which serves as an insulator. A highly absorbent and fire-resistant material is formed when heated. Ultimately, it helps disperse the iron powder and ensure it doesn’t burn out too fast.

And this is how it is done. The pros use it to keep their hands warm as they play and to absorb excess moisture.

Why do Gamers Use Hand Warmers Before and After Games?

While playing on the field or on the internet, sweaty hands, feet, and body always affect your game performance. As an online gamer, you can understand how important is the efficient and on-time movement of your hands and fingers.

A slight lag or delay will be the reason for your defeat. It is expected that constant movement of fingers makes them tired and lowers blood circulation, which is a common cause of cold and numb hands. 

So, every gamer is constantly finding the answer to one question; how to keep hand warm while gaming? The hand warmers are a great solution, as they keep your hands warm, protect your muscles, and enhance your game experience.

Instead of using them before the game, gamers also use them after finishing it. This practice helps them keep their muscles relaxed and prevent any future damage.

Reasons for Cold Hands

In typical gaming situations, the most common cause of cold hands is poor blood circulation. Have you ever seen or felt any of the following symptoms in you.

  1. When it comes to your hands, have you ever felt tingling or numbness? Pins and needles is a common term for this condition.
  2. Have you ever felt a prolonged cold that lasted a couple of hours despite several attempts to improve blood circulation? In severe cases, you can experience this situation also.

However, the reality is that all this is not because of gaming overall. Despite there are chances that the gamer might be struggling with some disease. Cold hands may be caused by one or more of the following microcirculation-related medical conditions:

  1. Raynaud’s Syndrome: It is an ailment that affects the fingers by reducing blood flow.
  2. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: When the body’s immune system assaults its own tissues, it produces extensive inflammation and tissue damage and may lead to numbness in the hands.
  3. Rheumatoid Arthritis: The fine nerves in your hands and feet might be affected by RA. You may experience numbness or a prickling sensation.
  4. Scleroderma: If you have Scleroderma, one of the symptoms you may encounter is pale, numb, and tingling fingers that worsen with cold or stress.
  5. Buerger’s Disease: It is a disease that damages blood vessels in the body, most often in the arms and legs. A swollen blood artery may impede blood flow, leading to the formation of clots. Hand or foot numbness is the most common side effect.

Does the Use of Hand Warmers help in Preventing Injury?

Are hand warmers dangerous? It is the question that sticks to the mind of many people.

Although it is less likely to see any incidents and injuries in online gaming, the minor ones happen, primarily because of strain. Frequent computer games will affect your health, especially your eyes, back, hands, and brain.

Sitting on a chair the whole day will make you obese. Many people suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome or early-onset arthritis due to playing video games for a long time.

To prevent such situations, take periodic pauses and use ergonomic keyboards. And the best solution is to use hand warmers. 

Mostly, gamers use them before the game to relax muscles, increase response speeds, and prevent injuries and strains from occurring. But you can also use them after your game ends. After rigorous exercise, warming and then cooling your muscles is a smart approach to strengthen them and avoid future damage.

Is it Cheating to Use Hand Warmers?

No, not at all. Almost many eSports leagues do not consider using hand warmers cheating. Yes, they provide you with an advantage but not an illegal edge. They do not, however, breach the regulations.

Moreover, there is no restriction for any team or team member not to use hand warmers, so everyone is free to use them. It is similar to warming up your body before any physical game. Every type of game needs a warmup: a cricketer, volleyballer, footballer, golfer, tennis player, wrestler, boxer, or even an arm wrestling.

Any physical activity like running, jogging, exercising, etc., needs your body to get ready for work. If you see one team utilizing hand warmers and the other not, it is generally accepted that both teams are on equal footing. On the contrary, taking supplements such as steroids to speed up one’s response time and dexterity could be considered cheating.

But steroids are never used by esports gamers because they make you muscular and will not affect your game even one percent. Esports gamers only take one illegal drug, Adderall, a synthetic stimulant used to treat narcolepsy and attention deficit disorder by activating the sympathetic and central nervous systems. It’s a blend of amphetamine derivatives, helping increase focus, but on the contrary, its side effects destroy your game.

F.A.Qs for why do gamers use Hand warmers

Do pros use hand warmers?

Cold sweaty hands are not only a problem for beginners; they are similar for pros also. Playing games on the internet is all about tapping keys and controlling and moving the mouse. As the gamer has to do everything with his hands, warm, sweat-free hands perform efficiently. So, pros also use hand warmers for better gaming.

What do most gamers use to dry their hands?

Most gamers use hand warmers, particularly air-activated before and after gaming, to dry their hands. It increases blood circulation, relaxes muscles, offers ease of movement, and helps recover from any swelling due to the extended use of fingers on a keyboard or mouse. 

Is there any reusable hand warmer?

Yes, saturated solutions and battery-powered hand warmers are reusable for gaming.

What Other Ways to Make Your Hands Hot?

If you don’t have anything to warm your hands, you can easily use hand warmers alternatives. Although there are many, you will find many life hacks like beans, rice, etc. Before gaming, if you want to warm up your hands, merely hold a cup of coffee in your hands; it will warm them quickly.

Zippo Hand warmer machine review

Which is the best brand for hand warmers?

Although there are many best handwarmer brands, I prefer four of them the most.


Now you know everything about why doe gamers use hand warmers, you can decide whether or not to purchase one for yourself. As a general rule, it improves performance and maintains a healthy body. It would be best always to use safety measures to prevent harm, as with any activity.

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