Crochet Basics: How to Choose the Best Crochet Hooks

The right crochet hook can make a project go so much better for the maker. When looking for the best crochet hooks, you need to consider the project type, the yarn you’re using, how you hold the hook, and any ergonomic needs you might have. There is no one “right” crochet hook but it’s possible to find the best crochet hooks for your own unique requirements.

Lion Brand Crochet hooks

This guide highlights some of the best crochet hooks and helps you find the hooks that are best for you.

clover crochet hooks

The all-around best crochet hooks

If you’re looking for a simple answer as to the best crochet hooks then the general consensus from recent informal web surveys is that Clover Soft Touch Crochet Hooks are the best option. Here are some of the reasons that these crochet hooks are so popular:

  • Soft rubber design is comfortable on the hands for prolonged periods of crochet
  • Unique shape is designed specifically for smooth crocheting
  • Combination of rubber and aluminum makes these durable, long-lasting crochet hooks
  • Affordable in comparison with other ergonomic crochet hooks

The ergonomic design that allows for lengthy crocheting without hand or wrist pain is the number one reason people favor these crochet hooks. Instagram’s ganondorf42 says, “Clover Soft Touch is like crocheting with air.”

crochet hooks 2

Photo via Crochet Concupiscence

The best crochet hooks for the job

Although Clover Soft Touch hooks get top reviews, it’s also important to consider what you are crocheting. You may have a favorite set of general hooks that you use most of the time but still need to get other crochet hooks for specific types of projects. Many niche crochet techniques require special tools. Here are some examples:

Tunisian crochet requires a specific hook type that is longer than a standard crochet hook and sometimes uses a double-ended hook, like the Clover Double Ended Tunisian Crochet Hooks.

Thread crochet uses small steel crochet hooks.

Broomstick lace requires drawing loops up onto a larger hook; a big plastic crochet hook (like Lion Brand’s Speek Hook Size 35) is smoothest for this job.

Bullion stitch may require a smoother hook and/or a specific hook head for easier crocheting.

Wire crochet work can be hard on hooks, especially bamboo hooks, so have a separate set of hooks for this niche.

The parts of a crochet hook

When choosing crochet hooks, it helps to understand the different parts of a crochet hook. Working from the top down, the anatomy of a crochet hook includes the head, throat, shaft, grip and handle. Let’s take a closer look at how some of these parts can differ from hook to hook.

inline vs tapered crochet hooks

Image via Fiber Flux

Head and throat

The head/throat of the crochet hook may be either inline or tapered. The popular Susan Bates brand of aluminum crochet hooks is an example of an inline crochet hook, while the he popular aluminum Boye hooks are tapered crochet hooks. Other brands may not be as well-defined as each of these, falling instead somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, but if you look closely you can see that most are either inline or tapered. Neither is better than the other, but crocheters typically find that they have a preference. It’s worth it to try both kinds and see which is best for you.

Shaft or grip

The shaft or grip of the crochet hook is where you will rest your thumb when you are crocheting. Many people find that they need to pay attention to this area of the crochet hook because a bumpy surface or one that’s too short can cause a lot of finger and wrist pain. You can see in the photo at the top of this post that the Clover Soft Touch has the rubber grip, which is one of the main reasons that people recommend these as the best crochet hooks.

Handle

Finally, you should consider the handle of the crochet hook. A standard crochet hook has a short, thin handle. This can get uncomfortable, which is why there are many different types of handles on the market today.

Atypical crochet hooks

For example, Susan Bates has a line of bamboo-handled crochet hooks specifically designed for thread crochet; those wider handles offer a better grip to make working with the small head of the hook an easier task. Addi Swing Hooks have a unique handle design based on ergonomics. Some crafty people also make their own thicker crochet handles using polymer clay around their favorite crochet hooks.

Occasionally, you may also come across a unique crochet hook that differs in some other area of the anatomy. For example, the Sharp Crochet Hook has a very pointed tip (at the top of the head) designed to poke holes in fabric specifically to be used for crocheting trim onto towels or blankets. There are also light-up crochet hooks with built-in lighting for crocheting in the dark.

The material of the crochet hook

crochet hooks

The last thing that you might want to consider is what material the crochet hook is made of. The most common materials for crochet hooks are aluminum, steel, plastic, bamboo, wood and glass. Of those, aluminum and plastic are most widely available, and glass is the least common.

Different materials will work better with different yarn projects. For example, a really slippery yarn such as silk bamboo might slide off of a glass or plastic crochet hook too quickly, so a slightly rougher wooden or bamboo crochet hook might be a better choice. The best crochet hooks are those that are right for the job as well as for the needs of the person doing the crochet work!

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