What’s Your Favorite Crochet Hook Material and Brand?

By Rachel Choi – 47 Comments

I’ve always wanted to know what other people thought about different crochet hooks. I’ve heard some people claim how great a certain material or brand is and how terrible others are. Honestly, I think it’s a personal choice.

For me, I’m a fan of Susan Bates hooks, just because I’ve been using them the most. They come in all sorts of sizes, from the tiny ones you need for thread to the regular sized ones for popular yarns. What I don’t like about them are the plastic ones. They tend to break too easily. But the metal ones are great (haven’t broken a metal one yet)!

I’ve been wanting to try other hooks, such as bamboo, clover touch (I think that’s the name), and the ones that light up, but they seem so costly. I’d love to know how you like them if you’ve tried them!

What about you? What hooks have you tried? Which ones do you like and dislike?

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47 Comments

  1. Diane says:

    I love Boye hooks. I have been using them for forty years now. I have a size 6 steel hook that was my mothers that I use still use. I love it. I really love to crochet with the size 10 crochet thread and this hook is the one I use. I don’t crochet as much with worsted yarn anymore as it’s fibers really bother my sinus and eyes. Sounds crazy, I know, but the little tiny fibers that you really can’t see but that come loose when crocheting seem to float up and get in my nose and eyes and before long I am all stopped up and my eyes are burning. I have really been into crocheting baby booties and hats lately. You really should try the Boye hooks. Of course if you have used Susan Bates for a long time you probably will not like Boye. They are very different. My daughter did get a Susan Bates one with the bamboo handle and loves it cause it helps her hand to not hurt. But like you said they are pricey and so she has not bought any more.
    Have a blessed Day,
    Diane

  2. deb says:

    I love the Clover Soft Touch hooks. They are so comfortable and my hands and wrists don’t hurt after crocheting with them.

  3. Joy says:

    Same Here Clover Soft Touch hooks!!

  4. meowy says:

    I’m a new reader to your blog, I think I saw it mentioned in the At My House group (I just joined that too hehe)

    I’ve only ever used the standard metal ones and those cute translucent cheap-o plastic ones. I do have a bamboo one by clover but I haven’t used it yet. I think it’s size E and most of my projects are thread crochet or needing size G. Of the metal and plastic, I actually like the plastic the most. It hurts less when I crochet (and they’re pretty). I hold my hook weird, and it grinds up against my pinkie finger knuckle. The plastic ones don’t hurt and they have a wee bit of give too but not so much that they snap.

    That’s for if I’m using worsted weight, dishcloths, hats, or whatever.

    For the thread crochet or for use in tatting I have only ever used the normal metal tiny hook kind, and if they do come in plastic I’d probably snap it in half before I finished round one hehe

    I think I will check the clover soft touch too, after seeing you all mention it. I’ve seen them before but wasn’t sure if it was useful or just something I’d wish I hadn’t bought

  5. Kat says:

    I HAD been using Boye aluminum hooks until I read from quite a few that they prefer Susan Bates. So now I am using Susan Bates aluminum hooks and love them. I can SEE the difference in the two brands — Susan’s have a deeper hook for the yarn to slide easier. And they definitely do not catch as often (very seldom, actually) on the yarn like the Boye ones did. I just thought it was the yarn, never imagined it was ‘cuz of the hook. I’ve been crocheting for just under two years now.

  6. Bananas says:

    well my set is Boye. because its the only brand that I can find here that has a complete set. I’ve been wanting to try Susan. I will ask santa to bring me 1 to try it out. I’ve also have the light up one and I’m not a big fan- first because the pastic doesn’t seem to slide easily and it was about 7$, I’m not say others may not like it- Its just not for me

  7. Caroline says:

    I mostly use my mum’s old aluminium hooks, including the bent 3.00 mm one, which I got snagged on something and bent even more out of line. Actually it’s easier to fit in my hand with the kink. I got a set of 4, 6 and 10mm bamboo ones that I adore, though the 4mm one needs the hook filing out a bit more, it doesn’t pull through so well. The others I find really smooth, never sticky and they feel light and warm in my hand.

    Think I might need to give the Clover soft touch a go, though. Susan Bates and Boye are harder to find over here in the UK.

  8. I loved the aluminium hooks for years but now that I have discovered the Clover Soft Touch hooks, I’m gradually replacing them all… so my Clover Soft Touch is my newest bestest friend as my hands & fingers don’t cry anymore… B

  9. Tasha says:

    I first started out with Boye. Now, I am a big fan of Susan Bates. I love them. The hook is so quick and easy to use.

    • Peggy says:

      Susan Bates brand is my favorite as well. Boye hooks I find have hooks that are difficult to use; they catch yarn at times when I’m not stitching. I do occasionally use plastic, but for metal hooks Susan Bates is my brand.

  10. Jeanne says:

    I love the original Baylene hooks. I believe they were made out of bone. Those are my favorite. They don’t get cold in the winter and are very smooth.

    Jeanne

  11. Sarah says:

    I started out with aluminum Susan Bates hooks, and then later tried the Boye hooks and I really don’t like the Boye hooks. It’s all in the shape of the hook itself – I like the Bates shape better (and maybe cuz I started out with those). When I buy other brands, I check the shape of the hook first.
    As for materials, I borrowed a plastic one from a friend (size G) when I’d forgotten mine and I snapped it within an hour. I’ll never use plastic again (I bought my friend a Bates aluminum G to replace the plastic I’d broken). I have two wooden hooks that are just lovely (finial style ends, dark walnut) from Brittany (I think that’s the brand) and even though the hook shape is right, there’s no groove for your fingers – just a full cylinder, it’s a lot like holding a pencil – and I always get big dents/welts on my fingers from using them. I probably grip the hook too tightly if I get welts from the wooden ones and snapped the plastic one.
    I would love to try the bamboo or the clover soft touch – as long as the hook shape is right and there’s a groove (or cushion) for my fingers. :)

  12. Denise Royal says:

    I like Susan Bates hooks. I have found for me personally that Boye hooks seperate the yarn when I crochet. Yet I have hear from friends that Susan Bates hooks do that for them. So I guess it is how you crochet and what hook works for you.

  13. Chris says:

    I love Susan Bates silvalume. I find they are the only ones, for me, that don’t split my yarn. They are smooth and just feel nice.

  14. Stacy says:

    I have been using bamboo for about 2 months now and I hate having to go back to my metal hooks or plastic even when I need a larger size than I have in bamboo.

  15. Sandie says:

    I have long been a Boye hook fan, but on a recent trip I found I had brought along one of my Bates hooks and I had no trouble at all with it. I also have an extensive hook collection and I have many different types, including the lighted ones, wooden, plastic, steel, aluminum, clay and whatever else came across my path and tickled my pocket book into giving up a bit of cash. :-) My favorite of the larger hooks is my Corian hook. Of my smaller, my Inox aluminum hooks are my favorite. Although I do collect them, I also use my hooks. Of the lighted ones, I prefer the long Needlelites to the shorter Crochet Lite.

  16. Samantha says:

    I use the aluminum Boye hooks and have a few of the neat light-up hooks as well. The light-up ones are really nice for when you are working with darker colors. I bought a set of the plastic Crystallite hooks, but I only like the larger ones. The smaller ones like F, G and H all broke on me.

  17. Carmel says:

    What I have used the most are my Bates aluminums. I have a few Boye (and even a HiyaHiya, which is Boye shaped) as well, and I think I have finally compromised with them enough to use them- but they are still slower than my Bates’s! I have some Bates with the bamboo handles, and they are a lot nicer- despite having a slightly different hook, which makes them grab the yarn a little bit differently. I still want to try the baking the polymer clay onto the handles trick.

    I also have two plastic hooks (one was branded Red Heart, and shaped like a Bates) and have not really liked using them. I will be getting my first bamboo hook in the mail any day now- I got a 10.5mm hook because I was afraid of breaking it! I can’t wait to try it out! :)

  18. Pat Kinzer says:

    I love crocheting with the hooks made by Boye and the best yarn is a yarn made by Hobby Lobby called “I Love this Yarn”.

  19. Cyndy says:

    I’m with you — I like Susan Bates best, and so does Melissa Leapman. The hook doesn’t narrow and it’s easy to get stitches on and off the hook.

  20. Cyndy says:

    Addendum to my comment: I also have a size M Brittany rosewood hook that I adore!

  21. Angela says:

    I’ve always used Boyle and have never been okay with the plastic ones. I wish they made the larger ones in steel – not just the thread sizes. Aluminum isn’t bad to work with, but I use it a lot and I wonder about the connections they’ve found between aluminum and alzheimers an the possible long-term affects of aluminum hooks on avid crocheters. I just bought my first BAMBOO hook (size F) and I love it. It has taken a little getting used to because the shape is slightly different with no finger rest. Once you’re used to it though, it means you can hold it wherever you like giving you much more freedom. I’ve found that I go much faster now that I can easily hold the hook close to the yarn.

  22. Jeanne Whipple says:

    I really like the Susan Bates hooks the best. If you look at the hook you will see that the hook part is even to the length while most other hooks the hook part is not even when you look down the shaft. I think this makes it to easy to split the yarn and much slower crocheting. Jeanne

  23. Joanne says:

    I love the Susan Bates hooks because the hook part is rounded and doesn’t catch like most
    hooks. I started with the Boye hooks but when I discovered the Bates that was it!! I do not
    like any of the plastic hooks. They really do not glide as smoothly as the metal ones.

  24. Denise says:

    Well, I just got back into crochet a few weeks before Thanksgiving, but I’ve been using my mom’s set of hooks. (She gave them to me this fall as she had to give up crochet because of her arthritis.)

    Some of hers are Boye, some Bates, and I’m using a Boye hook right now for the afghan I started and having no problems.

    Interesting comments about both aluminum and bamboo. Re the long-term affects of using the aluminum hooks: my mom was an avid crocheter for over 40 years and she is still sharp as a tack in her 80s so…

    Some of those bamboo hooks look lovely. For those of you that use them, you can really tell a difference in the way your hands feel after using them? I’m all about saving wear and tear on my hands.

  25. Nancy says:

    I love the Boye hooks. I have bought many, many others over the years, I have been crocheting for over 35 years, and I always come back to the Boye. In the last year, I have bought the cute little colored translucent ones. I have broken several. LOL! Just not for me. I would like to try the bamboo or wooden ones, but I am afraid I will break those too.

    I have steel hooks that were my grandma’s no idea what brand, they are better than any I have ever bought. Much sturdier and more comfortable in the hand.

  26. I use OLD Susan Bates crochet hooks, the ones with the size on them not the MM
    have been using the same ones for about 58 years now.
    I work with thread all the time add I have loved OPERA THREAD BY COATS
    now I just found out that they have discontinued making it.
    So I don’t know what I will turn to now.

  27. Debbie says:

    I have sets of Susan Bates, Boyle, clover soft touch, and Laurel Hill. I had used the first 2 for years. Then I got a set of the clover soft touch for myself and my girlfriend and loved them and they were the only ones I used for about a year. Then DH went out of town for business and brought me back 2 Laurel Hill forest palmwood hooks. I fell in love, very lightweight, thumb rest, and warm to touch when using. Absolutely wouldn’t use anything else. I had to purchase the rest of the sizes so I’ld have a complete set. Those are the only hooks I use now and I have no plans of changing. I don’t know if you can still get the forest palmwoods, but they do have an “ebony” that looks very nice.

  28. Becki says:

    I tried the hook that lights up and it broke after the 2nd time I used it!
    I made a handle for my aluminum hook with polymer clay and I really like it for a change. It helps my fingers to change occasionally plus you can make the thickness of your handle however thick or thin you like. Polymer clay is very very lightweight.

  29. Marty says:

    I “grew up” on Boyd aluminum hooks and I prefer them. I would like to try different woods, Clover or other ergonomic brands, and maybe something exotic like ivory. I did buy a wooden one once and while I like the warmth of it and the yarn slid well, I wasn’t crazy about the center or thumb part, it was too wide.

  30. Debbie says:

    Oh boy, I love to crochet with any hook I get my hands on. But I do use the plastic hooks for when I’m on the airplane. They only allow plastic. And I have to keep busy when flying so as not to get scared! But really, I could probably use a crochet hook made out of stone if that were the only one I had. Happy Holidays to everyone!

  31. Rachael says:

    I am a college student and a very poor one at that, so I use plastic ones because they are cheaper and when I lose them I don’t feel so guilty. I am always crocheting in between classes and work so a lot of times I drop my hooks when I’m rushing around so the plastic ones are good enough for now.

  32. m says:

    Boye hooks are my favorite – nice and slippy, and I like the pointy tip. Especially my grandmother’s old ones! The plastic ones I hate, but am stuck with if I’m using an extra large hook… can’t seem to find metal hooks in a large size around here. I haven’t tried bamboo, but I think I probably wouldn’t like them – my daughter uses bamboo needles for knitting and likes those because they hang onto the yarn better, and that would drive me nuts.

    Cotton yarns are my favorite to crochet with – just the act of crocheting. Lily Sugar n’ Cream, and Lion Brand Organic.

  33. Meg says:

    I’m a Clover Soft Touch fan because of the handle, not the hook/shaft. I like metal hooks, but I taught high school English for 20 years and all that writing/grading has done a number on my hands and wrists, especially thumbs. I have carpal tunnel and another variety of tendonitis, so holding a pencil is very difficult. HOWEVER, with the Clover Soft Touch (and another, new, Japanese brand, the Tulip) handle style, I can crochet for hours with no hand problems at all!!!

  34. I have a massive collection of hooks, both Boye and Bates…but I must admit that I do prefer the Susan Bates hooks for most projects. They just seem to grab and hold onto the yarn better than the Boye’s do. I haven’t had much experience with plastic hooks…until I flew to San Antonio over the Thanksgiving holidays! I bought a cheap set of the main sizes to carry on the plane. Started using the required size H on a project on the plane, and broke the hook before I got there! So, I pulled out the G hook and tried to continue crocheting loosely, and it worked….until it snapped on the 2nd day of my visit! Had to go to Joanne’s and buy another one to finish my project with! So far, it has remained intact! I do hate the way the plastic ones feel, though. Too light and kinda of draggy….not as smooth as my aluminum ones. I’ve never tried wooden or bamboo hooks, though they probably are quite nice, as I love the feel of smooth polished wood! I have one lighted hook, but haven’t used it yet…hope it doesn’t break on me when I do!

  35. Cindy says:

    I bought a lighted crochet hook the other day in the bargain bin. I think it was $4. I really liked it. It helps to light up the area when you are trying to crochet front or back loops only.
    One of my favorites to use is a size F aluminum hook with the knitting needle on the back. I guess I like it because it is longer.
    Has anyone ever made clay handles for your hooks? There is a video on you tube showing a lady making different ones. She even squeezed the clay to make one that conformed to her hand. They also have a video about using squishy pencil covers. They look comfortable also.
    I am rather new here, so if this has been discussed before, sorry to repeat the idea. I’m just
    excited to try the clay thing because my 29 year old daughter works with clay so this gives us something in common.
    I love working with plarn. I like to try different thicknesses. I make big tote bags out of wide loops plarn and little barbie purses out of loops I cut to about 1/4 inch.
    The other day at Michael’s, I was able to buy a pair of Fiskar spring scissors for half price. I got the $30 scissors for $15. They are so nice for cutting plarn loops.
    Finally, I think everyone should try a lighted crochet hook just to see the difference.

  36. Emily says:

    I usually use Boye aluminum hooks. I’ve tried other metal ones (I believe I’ve tried Susan Bates) and they just… Didn’t work for me. I have also tried plastic hooks and don’t like them, no matter what brand they are.
    I want to try bamboo crochet hooks. I knit more than I crochet and always try to use bamboo needles because they just seem best for me to work with, so I’m curious if it would be the same way with crochet hooks.

  37. Jean says:

    I learned to crochet with thread and Boye hooks when 12 years old. As an adult, I prefer Bates for the yarns. I can use Bates for thread, but still prefer Boye, it hooks the thread better. I tried Soft Touch, found the hook is not deep enough to hold my yarn, so gave them up. I now use bamboo handle Bates for my yarn projects. They are 1 inch longer than without the handle, I needed the extra length. Also, I don’t have to grip the hook so tight and I find I crochet looser and more relaxed now.

  38. RedTheHick says:

    A few years ago, my husband got me the best hook EVER for my birthday. From a couple of people who make them by hand from wood. Greydog Woodworks. They usually sell stuff on ebay, but I think they are on hiatus right now. :( If you can afford to get 1 of their hooks, you’ll be HOOKED! (Some are quite pricey, but I have simple tastes so the lower end are more than fine for me.) Otherwise, I either use the bamboo or whatever I have handy in the size I am looking for. I tend to avoid the metal ones when I can. I press too hard, so where the “thumb rest” is, leaves and imprint on my thumb. :(

  39. Samantha says:

    I am definitely a fan of the aluminum and bamboo hooks. I inherited all of my grandmothers crochet and knit tools when she was moved into a hospice for care and as such have found very little need to buy any other hooks (except when traveling via plane). Due to air port security where I fly out, there are no metal, wood or bamboo hooks & knitting needles allowed so I went and bought some of the Susan Bates plastic ones.

    The plastic ones do snap very easily with long use if you are using the hooks that are H or smaller. The hooks larger than that do very well though and have enough give so that my young yet computer tortured hands don’t spasm and ache after a couple of hours.

    My grandmothers set of hooks consist of both Boyle and Susan. I have noticed that with the Susan hooks they seem to move more fluidly in my hand and rarely catch. When looking at the hook it appears to have been filed down better (deeper and smoother) than the Boyle hooks until I get down to the very tiny, lace making hooks.

    For the lace making hooks, I prefer the Boyle over the Susan hooks so far. The “better filing” becomes a hindrance for me with the Susan hooks at this size and I end up catching too many strands/loops sometimes. With the Boyle hooks I work more smoothly at this level.

  40. Kerstin says:

    My favourite hook is a rosewood hook size 3 made by a small company in Germany from wood from sustainable forrestry which is primarily used for producing musical instruments. (So instead of throwing away the leftovers of the instrument-producing, they use the wood to make knitting needles, crochet hooks and other things.)
    They offer hooks in ebony, kingwood and rosewood (because these woods are very strong), with or without handle, and for extra money you can ask for longer hooks (e.g. if you have long hands and the normal hook-length would poke your palm if holding the hook like a knife (or in “Rachel-Style”)) or for big sizes as well.

    I had a birch tree hook by “knit pro”, but it broke after 20 Minutes of use… (and I am not a tight crocheter and was just crocheting a single stitch into a chain – so nothing “wild” really…).

    For “cluster”-stitches [? (I think you call them "puff"-stitches in English)] I prefer steel hooks with a handle made of hard-plastic or soft-touch-synthetics (e.g. “Inox/Prym” – they offer both kinds of handles), because the pulling of the yarn can be “exhausting” for the thin wooden hook. But as soon as these stitches are done, I switch back to the wooden one. :-)

    I have not tried bamboo yet, but I am so content with the wooden hook, that I do not feel like trying other material…

    I prefer the round hooks (and handles), because [crocheting in the "Rachel-Style"] sometimes I just turn the hook between thumb and index-finger to get the strand instead of turning my wrist; so the wrist can get a rest and I do not have to stop crocheting meanwhile. :-)

    Hope the information could inspire you to try rosewood as well,

    Kerstin

  41. Lia says:

    i love the boye hooks have tried others and do not like them as much. i jsut bought a set on joanns for about $44
    i will always use the boye hooks!

  42. Maryanne Thompson says:

    interesting site,,,, any help out there for those of us going through meno?,,, my hands sweat and the hook gets sticky… I wash it and my hands frequently, but the problem is almost contant… I have also tried using an antipersperant, antibacterial gel,and baby powder…. same results… thinking of going to glove and cut off the tips.. Anyone else had this problem.? thanks , M

  43. Janette says:

    I love the I hook and I love Mary Maxim as a site for yarn…really do not have a favorite….

  44. Leaf says:

    My favorite has always been Susan Bates Silvalume hooks but I’ve not tried a whole lot of other brands.

    Anyone have a brand recommendation for large hooks? I have a few projects I want to do that call for 11.5mm and 15.75mm sizes and I’ve not found any definitive answer yet :(

    Any thoughts or source redirections are appreciated ! Thank you!

  45. Connie H says:

    I’ve used Susan Bates and Boye. I’ll take Susan Bates hooks over Boye any day. I can definitely tell the difference.

  46. Christine says:

    I enjoy crocheting with my Susan Bates Silvalume hooks. It run smooth.

    But will be glad to have clover soft touch hooks. If only it would be more affordable, I’ll grab one right away. ;-)

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