two metallic blue dumbbells sitting against a light blue backgroundShare on Pinterest
Design by Wenzdai Figueroa

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Working out at home may have always been your jam. Or maybe it’s new territory for you.

No matter what camp you fall in, making home workouts effective can pose some challenges — one of which can be a lack of equipment.

But with some level of investment, you can create a home “gym” that truly works for you.

The key to this will be purchasing a few integral pieces, like a set of dumbbells, to take your home workouts from drab to fab.

Go search “dumbbells” on Google or Amazon, though, and it becomes clear that there are lots of options. And if you don’t know where to start or what to look for, it can get overwhelming quickly.

To help you decide, we sorted through hundreds of options to come up with the best choices for every experience level, type of exercise program, and budget.

We took the following into consideration when selecting these dumbbells:

  • Anecdotal advice from real personal trainers. These dumbbells were selected by certified personal trainers who have experience using different kinds of dumbbells.
  • Shape, grip, and ease of use. Some shapes and grip types are more comfortable for beginners, while others are better for more advanced trainees. We’ve suggested which dumbbells might work best for different training levels, but these are only general guidelines.
  • Quality and brand reputation. We looked for dumbbells made of sturdy materials and sold by well-established companies.
  • Customer reviews. These dumbbells have mostly positive customer feedback.
  • Price. We included a range of options to suit a variety of budgets. It’s typical for dumbbells to cost roughly $1.50–$3.00 per pound ($3.33–$6.66 per kg) of weight. We used this range to help gauge the cost-effectiveness of each option.
  • Vetting. The dumbbells on our list have been vetted to ensure that they align with Healthline’s brand integrity standards and approach to well-being. You can read more about our vetting process.

Here are the 12 best dumbbells you can use at home in 2022.

A note on price

General price ranges with dollar signs ($ to $$$) are indicated below. One dollar sign means the product is rather affordable, whereas three dollar signs indicate a higher cost.

Remember, prices of dumbbells vary based on total weight, so buying a single, 5-pound (2.3-kg) dumbbell will inevitably be less expensive than buying a set of heavier single or adjustable dumbbells.

Generally, list prices range from $8–$1,499, though this may vary depending on available discounts and where you shop.

  • $ = under $100
  • $$ = $101–$400
  • $$$ = over $401

Heads up: These price ranges don’t include shipping costs, so keep this in mind when reviewing your options.

Best under $100

Amazon Basics Rubber Encased Hex Dumbbells

  • Price: $
  • Weight range: 10–50 lbs. (4.5–22.7 kg)
  • Format: sold as single dumbbells
  • Shape: hex

A budget-friendly basic, this rubber dumbbell is sold individually, so you’ll probably need to purchase two.

The rubber coating helps protect floors and other surfaces, and the contoured handle is easy to grip. Plus, their hex shape helps keep them from rolling and makes it easier to stack them on top of each other for storage if needed.

With more than 30,000 reviews and a 4.7 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, it’s clear that these get the job done.

Some reviewers report that the dumbbells have an overwhelming plastic-y smell upon unpacking, but the consensus is that it does dissipate after a few days.

Pros

  • hex shape prevents rolling
  • budget-friendly
  • weight range availability is sufficient for most exercises and needs

Cons

  • some users may need dumbbells under 10 lbs. (4.5 kg) or heavier than 50 lbs. (22.7 kg)
  • no 2.5-lb. (1.1-kg) weight increments available
  • sold as singles rather than pairs

Best splurge dumbbells

Bowflex SelectTech 1090 Adjustable Dumbbells

  • Price: $$$
  • Weight range: 10–90 lbs. (4.5–40.8 kg)
  • Format: adjustable, set of 2
  • Shape: hex

If you’re looking to save space while still having access to a range of resistance levels, it’s hard to beat the Bowflex SelectTech 1090 adjustable dumbbells. This set of two dumbbells enables users to select 17 different 5-pound (4.5-kg) weight increments ranging from 10 to 90 pounds (4.5–40.8 kg).

The easy-adjust dial makes switching resistance levels between exercises and sets quick and easy to do.

Unlike the SelectTech 552, this model has a slight hex shape that prevents them from rolling even when they aren’t racked in the provided holder. They also work with the Bowflex SelectTech app.

It’s important to note that if you need dumbbells that weigh less than 10 pounds (4.5 kg), you’ll need to purchase them separately.

These dumbbells are more expensive than most, but considering a single set replaces the equivalent purchase of up to 17 pairs of dumbbells, that reduces the price per pound to under a dollar (price per kg would be around $2).

Pros

  • wide range of weight increments covers practically every type of workout and fitness need
  • easy-adjust dial for quick weight adjustments
  • hex shape prevents rolling
  • compatible with SelectTech training app

Cons

  • very high upfront cost
  • weights under 10 lbs. (4.5 kg) or over 90 lbs. (40.8 kg) would have to be purchased separately
  • weight adjusts in 5-lb. (4.5-kg) increments instead of 2.5-lb. (1.1-kg)

Best for beginners

Amazon Basics Neoprene Hand Weights

  • Price: $
  • Weight range: 3–8 lbs. (1.4–3.6 kg)
  • Format: sold in pairs with a rack
  • Shape: hex

A good option for beginners, these coated dumbbells are easy on the hands and the eyes, given their fun colors.

Many people may find them easier to grip than a more traditional set of dumbbells, and the wallet-friendly price makes them an accessible option.

This set comes with three pairs — 3, 5, and 8 pounds (1.4, 2.3, and 3.6 kg) — and a bonus rack. There are other sets available (one with weights ranging from 2–5 pounds, or 0.9–2.3 kg, and the other with weights ranging from 5–15 pounds, or 2.3–6.8 kg) which may be more appealing to some buyers.

There are also options to buy individual dumbbell sets without a rack ranging from 2 to 20 pounds (0.9–9.1 kg).

Pros

  • hex shape prevents rolling
  • rack included
  • neoprene coating helps with a comfortable grip

Cons

  • may not be enough weight for lower body exercises or more advanced workouts

Best hex dumbbells

Rogue Dumbbells

  • Price: $–$$$, depending on weight
  • Weight range: 2.5–125 lbs. (1.1–56.7 kg)
  • Format: sold in pairs
  • Shape: hex

These rubber-coated, hex-design dumbbells have a textured and ergonomic grip that allows for ease of use in a variety of exercises. Hex dumbbells won’t roll, so you can do exercises like renegade rows that require the dumbbells to rest on the floor.

They aren’t adjustable, so you’ll have to purchase multiple sets if you’d like to experiment with different weights, but their overall affordability makes that a little easier to do.

Plus, the rubber coating means you don’t have to worry as much about damaging your floors.

Just keep in mind, lighter dumbbells cost less than heavier weights, as prices reflect the total poundage being purchased.

Pros

  • hex shape to prevent rolling
  • textured handle to improve grip
  • rubber coating protects floor surfaces

Cons

  • may need to purchase multiple pairs to support a variety of exercises and workouts
  • heavy pairs are expensive — may not be cost-effective compared to adjustable dumbbell options

CAP Barbell Coated Dumbbells

  • Price: $–$$, depending on weight
  • Weight range: 3–120 lbs. (1.4–54.4 kg)
  • Format: sold as single dumbbells
  • Shape: hex

Another solid choice for rubber-coated, hex-shaped dumbbells, the CAP Barbell Coated Dumbbells come in a wide range of weights from 3–120 pounds (1.4–54.4 kg).

The textured ergonomic handle is designed to help improve grip, which is especially important when you’re lifting heavier weights.

Each dumbbell is sold individually, so if you need a variety of resistance levels, you’ll need to purchase several dumbbells, keeping in mind, if you want pairs, you’ll have to buy two of each resistance.

Pros

  • hex shape keeps them from rolling
  • textured, ergonomic handle for better grip
  • rubber coating helps protect floors

Cons

  • sold as individual dumbbells, not pairs
  • some reviewers mention a strong smell and oily coating when first unpacking them

Best block dumbbells

Ironmaster Quick-Lock Adjustable Dumbbell System

  • Price: $$$
  • Weight range: 5–45 lbs. (2.3–20.4 kg)
  • Format: adjustable, set of 2
  • Shape: square/block

This adjustable dumbbell set from Ironmaster looks and feels more like a traditional set of dumbbells than many other adjustable options, which is an appealing factor to some.

Adjustable from 5 to 45 pounds in 2.5-pound (1.1-kg) increments, the weights are solidly made. No plastic here — another plus.

This is a great set for someone who’s experienced with resistance training.

To adjust the dumbbells, you have to add and remove plates, which can take a few seconds. If you change weights frequently, this may be an extra step you don’t appreciate.

The dumbbell set comes with a lifetime warranty. That said, the price per pound is about $5.50 ($12.22 per kg), which is higher than some other options. Many similar weights range from $1.50–$3.00 per pound ($3.33–$6.66 per kg).

Pros

  • square shape helps prevent rolling
  • textured handle helps improve grip
  • compact design saves space
  • lifetime warranty

Cons

  • changing the resistance level takes a few extra seconds
  • cost per lb./kg is higher than most other similar adjustable systems

Best loadable dumbbells

Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells

  • Price: $$
  • Weight range: 10–95 lbs. (4.5–43.1 kg)
  • Format: adjustable, set of 2
  • Shape: round

A more “old school” bodybuilding-like adjustable dumbbell option, this set is available to purchase from 40 to 200 pounds total (18.1 to 90.7 kg), with the 190-pound (86.2-kg) adjustable set providing enough resistance for most people.

The weight is adjusted using plates that you add to or remove from each side of the bar, and each bar has a threaded end with a collar to hold the plates in place.

It’s important to note that the smallest weight plates weigh 5 pounds (2.3 kg). This means you have to increase the dumbbell weight in 10-pound (4.5-kg) increments, which may not always be ideal depending on what exercise you’re doing.

This version also comes with a connector bar that enables you to connect the two dumbbells together to make a barbell.

Having to stop to adjust the weight on each end of the bar may become frustrating if you do frequent weight changes.

That said, they’re a great option for advanced lifters. Beginners may find a different set easier to maneuver.

Pros

  • textured handles improve grips
  • wide range of weights included in a single set
  • connector bar allows the dumbbells to also function as a barbell

Cons

  • round weight plates mean the dumbbells may roll around
  • increasing weight in 10-lb. (4.5-kg) increments might be too heavy
  • changing out the plates on a regular basis may become frustrating

Best expandable dumbbells

PowerBlock Sport EXP

  • Price: $$$
  • Weight range: 2.5–50 lbs. (1.1–22.7kg), expansion packs up to 90 lbs. (40.8 kg) available
  • Format: adjustable, set of 2
  • Shape: square/block

PowerBlock dumbbells are a popular expandable and adjustable option. The base model adjusts from 2.5 to 50 pounds (1.1 to 22.7 kg) in 2.5-pound (1.1-kg) increments. You can add one expansion pack for resistance up to 70 pounds (31.8 kg) and a second for resistance up to 90 pounds (40.8 kg) per dumbbell.

This set relies on an auto-lock pin to adjust the weight, which means you can adjust the weight pretty quickly.

Relative to the weight it offers, this dumbbell set provides quite a bit of value considering how many separate dumbbells it replaces. Plus, the expansion packs allow you to get even more bang for your buck.

Pros

  • adjustable design saves space
  • expansion packs available
  • price per pound/kg is highly competitive when compared to the equivalent number of individual dumbbell sets

Cons

  • auto-lock pin system takes some getting used to
  • block shape of the dumbbells may feel a bit awkward for some exercises
  • upfront cost is high

Best adjustable dumbbells

Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells

  • Price: $$$
  • Weight range: 5–52.5 lbs. (2.3–23.8 kg)
  • Format: adjustable, set of 2
  • Shape: round

Free up your workout space with the Bowflex SelectTech 552 adjustable dumbbells, which take the place of 30 individual dumbbells.

They adjust from 5 to 52.5 pounds (2.3–23.8 kg) — in 2.5-pound (1.1-kg) increments up to the first 25 pounds (11.3 kg), then in 5-pound (2.3-kg) increments after that — via an easy-to-use dial that makes adding or removing weight a breeze.

Shoppers overwhelmingly give this set a nearly 5-star rating, citing ease of use as one of its most appealing factors.

These dumbbells are also compatible with Bowflex’s SelectTech training app, which has free workouts and technique tips.

Keep in mind that their round shape does mean the dumbbells may roll when not racked in the provided holder.

Pros

  • spin-dial weight selection system is easy and quick to use
  • work with SelectTech training app
  • look and function like typical dumbbells, unlike some block-style adjustable sets

Cons

  • round dumbbell heads mean the dumbbells may roll when they aren’t racked
  • upfront cost is high

Best dumbbell set with a rack

papababe Dumbbell 150-Pound Set

  • Price: $$
  • Weight range: 5–25 lbs. (2.3–11.3 kg) in 5-lb. (2.3-kg) increments
  • Format: sold in pairs with a rack
  • Shape: hex

This set of 5 pairs of dumbbells offers a good range of weight increments for most beginner and intermediate-level exercises and workouts. Dumbbells are available in 5-, 10-, 15-, 20-, and 25-pound (2.3-, 4.5-, 6.8-, 9.1-, and 11.3-kg) pairs.

Having dumbbell sets make it easy to switch weights between exercises or sets, and the provided rack helps you save space.

If you enjoy exercising in a group with friends or family, separate dumbbell sets also make it a lot easier for more than one person to work out with free weights at the same time (as long as you’re using different resistance levels).

Hex-shaped heads prevent the dumbbells from rolling, and the rubber coating helps protect floors and other surfaces.

Other sets and weight ranges are available at different price points. Some include the storage rack, while others don’t.

Pros

  • solid set for someone looking for a range of different weights appropriate for beginner or intermediate-level exercises or workouts
  • weight rack helps with space savings
  • easy to switch weights between sets and exercises

Cons

  • may not provide enough resistance options for people who want to lift heavier
  • heavier sets may not come with a storage rack

Most versatile

YBell Neo Series

  • Price: $
  • Weight range: 10–27 lbs. (4.5–12.2 kg)
  • Format: sold as single YBells
  • Shape: triangular

The triangular design of the YBells allows you to grip and use them in many ways — as dumbbells, kettlebells, dual-grip medicine balls, or pushup bars. This makes it easier to switch up your workouts even if you have limited equipment.

The triangular shape won’t roll away (plus it offers a strong base for pushups), and the neoprene coating is easy on your hands and other surfaces.

The weight range of 10–27 pounds (4.5–12.2 kg) is wide-ranging enough for most exercisers and programs, but it may not be enough for those who want to lift heavier weights.

You can hang the YBell on wall racks or stack them for easy, space-saving storage.

These dumbbells cost roughly $3 to $6 per pound ($6.66 to $13.33 per kg), which is higher than many other dumbbells. Each YBell is sold individually, so you’ll likely need to buy two of each weight you plan to purchase.

Pros

  • triangular shape won’t roll and is easy to store
  • can be used as dumbbells, kettlebells, pushup bars, and dual-grip medicine balls
  • neoprene coating is grip-friendly

Cons

  • per lb./kg cost is higher than many dumbbells
  • available weight increments may not be enough for some
  • sold individually

Best cast iron dumbbells

CAP Barbell Black Cast Iron Hex Dumbbells

  • Price: $–$$, depending on weight
  • Weight range: 5–115 lbs. (2.3–52.2 kg)
  • Format: sold as singles or pairs, depending on weight
  • Shape: hex

The CAP Barbell Black Cast Iron Hex Dumbbells are a classic hex dumbbell option that’s been popular for years. Since they’re made entirely of cast iron, they’re a little cheaper and smaller than rubber-coated dumbbells.

They come in a wide variety of weights, from 5 to 115 pounds (2.3 to 52.2 kg), which makes them a good option for a wide variety of exercises.

Cast iron lasts practically forever, so this is the type of dumbbell you can use for years even if it gets a little scraped up over time.

That said, the lack of rubber coating can be hard on flooring and other surfaces. It’s best to use these on top of mats to protect your floors.

Keep in mind that some dumbbells are sold as singles while others are sold as sets, so it’s important to pay attention to what you’re ordering.

The cost per pound comes out to less than $2 (price per kg would be around $4), with many falling between $1.50–$1.75 per pound ($3.33–$3.89 per kg), making them a more budget-friendly option than many other dumbbells.

Pros

  • hex shape keeps them from rolling
  • durable cast iron
  • no rubber casing helps cut down on space requirements

Cons

  • lack of rubber casing may scratch/damage floors
  • sometimes sold as singles, other times as pairs
  • “old school” look may not appeal to all users

Here’s a quick look at how these dumbbells compare.

PriceWeight rangeSingles or pairsShapeAdjustable?
Amazon Basics Rubber Encased Hex Dumbbells$10–50 lbs. (4.5–22.7 kg)singleshexno
Bowflex SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells$$$• 10–90 lbs. (4.5–40.8 kg)
• adjustable in 5-lb. (2.3-kg) increments
set of 2hexyes
Amazon Basics Neoprene Workout Dumbbells$3–8 lbs. (1.4–3.6 kg)set of pairs with rackhexno
Rogue Rubber Hex Dumbbells$–$$, depending on weight2.5–125 lbs. (1.1–56.7 kg)pairshexno
CAP Barbell Coated Dumbbell Weights$–$$, depending on weight3–120 lbs. (1.4–54.4 kg) singleshexno
Ironmaster Quick-Lock Adjustable Dumbbell System$$$ • 5–45 lbs. (2.3–20.4 kg)
• adjustable in 5-lb. (1.1-kg) increments
set of 2square/blockyes
Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells$$ • 10–95 lbs. (4.5–43.1 kg)
• adjustable in 10-lb.(4.5-kg) increments
set of 2roundyes
PowerBlock Sport EXP$$$ • 2.5–50 lbs. (1.1–22.7kg)
• adjustable in 2.5-lb. (1.1-kg) increments
• additional expansion packs available to increase each dumbbell up to 90 lbs. (40.8 kg)
set of 2square/blockyes
Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells$$$ • 5–52.5 lbs. (2.3–23.8 kg)
• adjustable in 2.5-lb. (1.1-kg) increments)
set of 2roundyes
papababe 105-Pound Dumbbell Set $$5–25 lbs. (2.3–11.3 kg)set of pairs with rackhexno
YBell Neo Series$10–27 lbs. (4.5–12.2 kg)singlestriangularno
CAP Barbell Black Cast Iron Hex Dumbbell$–$$, depending on weight5–115 lbs. (2.3–52.2 kg)singles or pairshexno

Here are a few things to think about when choosing a set of dumbbells for your home gym.

Budget

How much are you willing to spend? While a single set of lighter dumbbells — think 5 to 20 pounds (2.3 to 9.1 kg) — will generally cost less than $50, the heavier the weight, the more you’ll need to shell out.

The typical range of price per pound is $1.50–$3.00 ($3.33–$6.66 per kg), so you may want to use this benchmark to budget and assess the cost-effectiveness of any given product.

A quality set of adjustable dumbbells, which provide a good range of weights, typically runs at least $300, although some might cost much more, depending on the range of weight increments they offer.

Goals

Will you be using the dumbbells for muscular endurance-oriented workouts or to add intensity to your cardiovascular training? Or is your goal to build strength and size?

If it’s the latter, you’ll probably need to consider an adjustable set or several single sets in different sizes.

Space

How much room do you have to work with? Adjustable dumbbells replace several sets of dumbbells, so if space is a concern, they might be a better option for you.

Preferred shape and grip

Dumbbells are available in several shapes — including hex, round, square/block, and triangular — as well as different grips, like textured and rubber or neoprene-coated.

Hex, square, and triangular dumbbells don’t roll around when you place them on the floor, so they may be safer than their round counterparts.

In terms of grip, neoprene-coated dumbbells are easier on the hands than those with a textured grip. Rubber-coated dumbbell heads are easier on floors and surfaces. If you’re using a heavier dumbbell, the handles will usually be textured to improve your grip.

Dumbbells are designed to be held in one or both hands while you perform various resistance training exercises.

For instance, you can hold a set of dumbbells at your sides while performing walking lunges, or you can hold a single dumbbell overhead to perform overhead triceps dumbbell extensions.

Dumbbells can be used on their own for added resistance during workouts, or they can be used with other types of strength training equipment.

For lower body exercises, you’ll generally want to use a heavier dumbbell to help challenge the larger muscles in your legs like your quads and hamstrings.

For upper body exercises, you may find yourself using lighter dumbbells because most of those muscles are smaller. That said, the exact level of resistance depends on your personal strength and goals.

The set and rep scheme you might use when performing dumbbell exercises depends on the exercises you’re doing and your strength goals (1, 2, 3).

Muscle endurance

If you want to build muscular endurance, you’ll perform more reps and sets while using a lower level of resistance. For instance, you might do 2–3 sets of 12–20 reps per set.

Over time, your muscles will get used to working for longer periods and won’t tire as quickly.

Building muscle mass

To focus on gaining muscle mass, otherwise known as hypertrophy training, you would perform a mid-range of sets and reps, likely 2–5 sets of 8–12 repetitions using a challenging but not overly taxing resistance level.

This type of training challenges your muscles enough to help them grow without wearing them out so much that you’re too sore or fatigued to train them for several days.

Building strength

For strength building, you would perform more sets of fewer reps at a very challenging resistance level. So, you’d probably do 3–5 sets of 3–8 reps per set.

This type of training can be pretty taxing, so you may find that your muscles need more time to recover even if you didn’t complete a high number of reps.

What do dumbbells do to your body?

Dumbbells provide added resistance to movements, which can help you build muscular endurance, mass, and strength. They’re a great way to make bodyweight exercises like squats and pushups more challenging, plus they make it easier to work on specific muscles individually.

One other benefit of using dumbbells is that they allow you to work each side of your body independently. This helps improve functional strength and correct muscular imbalances, which naturally develop from being right- or left-hand dominant, playing sports, and more.

Which dumbbells are best for home use?

Selecting the best set of dumbbells for your home workouts will depend on your preferences, workout needs, and budget.

While some people need a wider range of dumbbell weights for a more varied free weight routine, you can also get a great workout in with a few sets of lighter, less expensive dumbbells.

Also, consider whether you prefer dumbbells that are adjustable or regular, hex-shaped or round, and so on. This will help you determine what size and style work best for you.

Are dumbbells enough to build muscle?

Dumbbells are absolutely enough to build muscle. As long as you’re using a weight that’s challenging enough for you, progressing your workouts regularly, and training consistently, you may not need any other equipment at all.

The key to building muscle is progressive overload, which means you’re regularly giving your muscles a new stimulus (by increasing weight, trying a new exercise, or changing the set and rep scheme performed).

Purchasing a set of dumbbells for your home workouts can help you reach your goals without a gym.

Choosing the best set for you will take a bit of research, but no matter what your budget or fitness level is, there’s an option for you.