Best dumbbell sets

By Katie Dyal

When you’re adding weight training to your fitness routine, choosing the right set of handheld dumbbells can be just as effective as buying the more expansive and bulky machines. If you’re looking to tone muscle, build muscle, or just elevate your heart rate during your sweat sesh, a good set of dumbbells can be a smart investment.

Dumbbells come in a variety of weight measurements and styles, and are easy to sanitize and store away. Adding weights to your workout routine is a great way to boost metabolism and burn additional calories while you firm and tone. Try out a set of these dumbbells, and you’ll be sure to see the benefits of weight training in your workout. Here are the best dumbbell sets.

The best dumbbell sets

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Fun 1980s Hex Rubber Dumbbell

Best narrow handle

Comfortable and old school 

Reliable, throwback models from the 80s are still highly effective today. 

Dumbbell weights are one of the few things that don’t have to be tech-improved or upgraded. This style has narrow, comfortable grips perfect for small- or medium-sized hands. The rubber, hex-shaped ends are silent when dropped and don’t roll or scratch surfaces. Available in sets of two, you can purchase five pounds up to 50 pounds, so you can add to your collection as you challenge your workout.

Why we love it:

  • Rubber, hex-shaped ends
  • Narrow handles
  • Cast iron construction with chrome handles
BalanceFrom GoFit Dumbbells

Best multipack

Secure and color-coded

If you’re looking for a flexible starter set that comes with an organizer rack, here’s the product to consider. 

This set of three pairs of weighs delivers three, five- and eight-pound pairs. Each weight is color-coded differently to eliminate confusion. If you’re just adding to an existing set, purchase one, four, eight- and 20-pound individual sets to add to your existing collection. The Neoprene coating delivers a slip-proof grip and the hex end shape reduces roll-away. 

Why we love it: 

  • Sturdy construction
  • Slip-proof grip
  • Wash and dry sanitizing
TheraBand Aquatic Dumbbells

Best for pool

Buoyant and padded

If you love to exercise in the pool or water, handheld dumbbells come in a water version.

This option is available in light, medium or heavy resistance. They are made from buoyant foam and have padded handles for comfort. Measuring 12 inches by 11 inches by six inches, they only work in the water. You simply apply resistance to push them under or around in the water. The light weights require 2.5 pounds of resistance while the medium requires four pounds and the heavy requires six pounds. 

Why we love it: 

  • Water weight training
  • Comfortable grip
  • Variable sizes available 
Cando Dumbbells

Best vinyl coated 

Hygienic and smooth

To secure a number of different sets of weights in one purchase, this choice, coated in a smooth, easy to clean vinyl, is your pick.

These dumbbells have both the pound and kilograms weight stamped on each. They come in a set of 10 weights that include a pair of ones, twos, threes, fours and fives. They have hex-shaped ends to restrict rolling and each weight is a different color. 

Why we love it:

  • Vinyl easy cleaning coating
  • Won’t scratch floors or furniture
  • Marked in metric and standard
Nice C Adjustable Dumbbells

Best light adjustable

Convenient and customizable

Customize the amount of weight you’re using with this product.

Made of slip-resistant neoprene, the curve-shaped handlebar is fall resistant and comfortable. The all-in-one function of this choice allows you to take the 2.2-pound weight and increase the heaviness in 0.6-pound increments. The ends of the bar unscrew to add additional weight bars as needed.

Why we love it:

  • Patented NiceC adjustable system
  • Four color choices
  • Neoprene coated 
Sunny Health Dumbbell Chrome Set

Best heavy duty

Chromed and versatile

For a buildable set that lets you start light and work your way up to heavy-duty, this set gives you versatility. 

This product starts with a 2.75-pound steel handlebar that features a crosshatch texture for slip resistance. Increase the weight by adding weight plates to each end. The set includes eight 2.5-pound plates and four 1.25-pound plates. The plates lock on with steel cogs and all of the pieces fit conveniently into a durable, plastic carrying case.

Why we love it:

  • Adjustable weights
  • Portable case
  • Durable steel

How to find the best dumbbell sets 

If you’re adding weight training to your workout and want to bring the convenience to your home or office, dumbbells are a space-saving, effective option. Consider handle size, surface quality, adjustability, and weight options before settling on the right set for you.

Handle size: Safety and comfort with dumbbells depends on how well you can grip the handlebars without straining. Small hands need thinner bars and larger hands do better with a thicker bar. Reduce the chance of strain or irritating joint discomfort with the correct fit. 

Surface quality: If you’re using weight gloves there is no concern with sweat causing slippage on the smoother surface materials. Choose an easy to sanitize surface material. If you opt for no gloves, the nonslip, washable vinyl or neoprene materials are gentler on your grip. 

Adjustability: Some sets are constructed as single, independent weights of different amounts and purchased in a set of two. Other sets start as a handlebar that allows you to add or remove weight to customize it. Decide which feature works best for you before you start shopping.

Weight options.: Buying weights in sets can mean a pair of a single amount of weight or a group of pairs with different weight markings. Each manufacturer will list how they sell their sets. 

Summary

Now that you have a better understanding of what options are available in dumbbells, you’ll be able to build a set that meets your specific needs. We hope you’ve found your perfect dumbbell set in this list.


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