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- Best adjustable weight dumbbell: FLYBIRD 25-Pound Adjustable Dumbbell
- Best adjustable dumbbell with removable plates: Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells, 200-Pound Pair
- Best lightweight dumbbell: Tru Grit 5-Pound Neoprene Coated Dumbbell
- Best lightweight dumbbell bundle: Amazon Basics Neoprene Coated Dumbbell Hand Weight Set
- Best moderate weight dumbbell: Amazon Basics Rubber Encased 20-Pound Hex Dumbbell
- Best moderate weight dumbbell bundle: WF Athletic Supply 5–25-Pound Rubber Coated Hex Dumbbell Set
- Best heavy weight dumbbell: Balancefrom Rubber Encased Hex Dumbbells
- Best heavy weight dumbbell bundle: WF Athletic Supply Cast Iron 590-Pound Dumbbell Set
- Most versatile dumbbell set: EDOSTORY Adjustable Dumbbell Set
- Best aquatic dumbbell: Theraband Aquatic Hand Bar Dumbbell
- Best kids’ dumbbell set: Redmon for Kids Fun and Fitness Dumbbell Set
- Best travel dumbbell: Deiris Water-Fillable Dumbbells
Dumbbells are one of the most versatile pieces of gym equipment you can own. From upper body exercises like presses and rows to lower body moves like squats and deadlifts, you can cover the basics of resistance training with a set of these weights.
It’s not always easy to find quality dumbbells that fit your budget — so we evaluated them for you.
One of the great things about dumbbells is that they’re very straightforward. They’re simple handheld weights designed to make it easy to add resistance to standard strength training exercises. But there are a few types of dumbbells you can consider.
Hex vs. rounded
Most standard dumbbells come with one of two shapes for the dumbbell heads — rounded or hexagonal (hex). The main benefit of a hex dumbbell is that it stays put and won’t roll away when you set it down. This also makes it easier to perform exercises like renegade rows, where the dumbbells are in contact with the ground for part of the exercise. Rounded dumbbells, on the other hand, can make exercises like pushups harder to perform by adding a balance challenge — you have to work to keep them from rolling as you do the exercise.
Adjustable vs. fixed
Generally speaking, most dumbbells are a set weight. These fixed weights can’t be adjusted or changed. Adjustable dumbbells, on the other hand, allow you to add or remove weight to a single dumbbell grip. These tend to be more cost-effective and versatile, and they can also save you space. But they do require a small learning curve to figure out how to adjust them. Plus, it can take a little time to change the weight between sets or exercises.
Coated vs. metal
Dumbbells tend to come in one of two finishes — either plain metal that might be painted or left raw or coated. The coating might cover the entire dumbbell or just the dumbbell heads, and it’s frequently made of rubber or neoprene. In terms of cost, uncoated dumbbells tend to be more affordable. However, the metal can be harder on flooring and mats, whereas coated dumbbells are less likely to scratch surfaces or leave marks.
The products in this article were chosen based on the following criteria:
- Expert experience. The author, who’s a certified exercise physiologist, has hand selected these recommendations.
- Customer reviews. The product gets high customer reviews.
- Company reputation. The manufacturer has a reputation for making quality products.
- Cost. The dumbbells are cheaper than most competitors.
- Vetting. All the products included have been vetted to ensure that they meet Healthline’s medical and business standards.
- Materials. Whenever possible, we chose the lowest cost option with the highest quality materials — for instance, a coated dumbbell rather than a raw metal dumbbell or a hex dumbbell rather than a rounded version. Quality was every bit as important as cost.
A note on price
General price ranges with dollar signs ($ to $$$$) are indicated below. One dollar sign means the product is rather affordable, whereas four dollar signs indicate a higher cost.
Generally, prices range from $16.99–$950.99, though this may vary depending on where you shop.
Also note that the heavier the dumbbell, the more expensive it is. This is because you’re paying for the actual weight of the metal that the dumbbells are made from. Lighter weights are the cheapest, while adjustable dumbbells and dumbbell sets are the priciest.
A general rule of thumb is that you can expect to pay roughly $2.00 per pound of weight that you’re purchasing. Every product on this list falls at or below this $2.00 benchmark. So when you consider the number of weights (and the total poundage) that come with these options, you’ll see many are quite economical.
- $ = under $25
- $$ = $25–$100
- $$$ = $100–$200
- $$$$ = above $200
Best adjustable dumbbell
This Flybird 25-pound (11.3-kg) adjustable dumbbell is sold as a single weight, adjustable from 5 to 25 pounds (2.2 to 11.3 kg) in 5-pound (2.2-kg) increments.
The weight is changed with a rotation of the handle, and a lock groove on each weight plate ensures they stay in place. A tray comes with each dumbbell as well.
Many users cite the easy-to-change weight as the dumbbell’s best feature.
The adjustable style helps save space in your home gym, and the weight options provide a good range for someone who’s just starting out with a strength training program. Keep in mind that the set functions as a single dumbbell. If you plan on doing exercises that require two dumbbells (like a dumbbell chest press), you’ll need to buy two.
- good range of weights in a single dumbbell
- space saver
- easy to adjust and use
- looks and feels like a standard dumbbell
- functions only as a single dumbbell (you’ll need to buy two to have a set)
- may not meet the needs of those who lift heavier weights (there’s another set available that’s adjustable up to 55 pounds)
Best adjustable dumbbell with removable plates
This set totals 200 pounds — up to 100 pounds (47.6 kg) on each side — and comes with sixteen 10-pound (4.4-kg) plates, four 5-pound (2.2-kg) plates, and four 2.5-pound (1.1-kg) plates.
The cast iron plates are covered in a black paint finish, and the handles have a textured nonslip grip. You adjust the weight of each dumbbell by unscrewing the collar, adding or removing plates, and fixing the collar back on.
This set gives you the flexibility to change the weight of your dumbbell from 10 pounds (including the weight of the bar and the collar) up to 100 pounds. To buy a set of separate dumbbells featuring this weight, you would typically have to spend well over $1,000.
Keep in mind that these weights may not be the best option for people who need to change the weight often and quickly. Unscrewing the collars and changing out the weight plates isn’t hard to do, but it does take a little time.
- versatile weight options, suitable for practically any level of resistance trainer
- saves space compared with stand-alone dumbbells in the same range of weights
- removable plates allow you to exercise with just the plates, without the bars or collars
- excellent deal for flexibility, compared with buying the same range of stand-alone dumbbells
- takes time to switch out the plates between sets or exercises if you need to change weights
- no rubber or neoprene coating (and some reviewers complain about how rough the plates are to handle)
Best lightweight dumbbell
If you’re looking for a light set of dumbbells, TRU GRIT has several affordable options that are especially well rated.
The 5-pound (2.3-kg) set offers a neoprene coating for easy grip and floor protection, as well as a hexagonal shape that ensures they won’t roll away.
It’s a pretty standard lightweight dumbbell, and there’s not much to complain about. The only thing to remember is that as your strength improves, a single set of dumbbells may not do the trick. You’ll likely need to add to your collection.
TRU GRIT also offers dumbbell sets in 6-, 8-, 10-, and 15-pound pairs at reasonable prices, so you can build your gym as you build your strength.
- neoprene coated for comfortable, slip-resistant handling
- hex shape to prevent rolling
- affordable price point to start a home gym
- single set likely won’t be enough as you develop greater strength
Best lightweight dumbbell bundle
If you’re committed to your new workout routine and want some flexibility with the weight you’re using, this Amazon Basics bundle may do the trick.
It comes with three neoprene-coated lightweight dumbbell sets (3, 5, and 8 pounds) and an A-frame rack to store them on. It also includes a single, 20-pound rubber-encased hex dumbbell for those moments you want added resistance.
The price per pound of weight comes out to less than $2 per pound, and the flexibility of the set is excellent for a beginner who needs light weights for upper body moves but wants the heavier resistance for lower body training.
Each dumbbell also features a coating for comfort and slip-resistance, and the stay-put hex shape helps prevent rolling.
- good variety of dumbbell sets and weight
- single 20-pound dumbbell is a nice feature for adding more weight to lower body moves
- hex shape to prevent rolling
- neoprene and rubber coatings for comfort
- 20-pound dumbbell comes as a single rather than a set
- beginners are likely to want a greater variety of weights in the 10- or 15-pound range as they improve their strength
Best moderate weight dumbbell
This 20-pound (9.1-kg) dumbbell has a cast iron core and rubber-coated caps that are easy on your flooring.
With over 30,000 reviews on Amazon, 84 percent of them are 5 stars. And when compared with other dumbbells of the same weight, the price point (just under $25 for a single dumbbell) is much better than most, coming in at about $1.25 per pound.
The dumbbell also features a roll-resistant hex shape that’s ideal for most workout routines.
Given that the dumbbell is sold as a single, most people will want to purchase two to have a set.
- much more affordable than other similar products
- hex shape
- rubber coated
- sold as a single rather than a set
- rubber coating has a strong smell — it fades, but reviewers stated that it was off-putting at first
Best moderate weight dumbbell bundle
This set of dumbbells includes pairs of weights ranging from 5 to 25 pounds in 5-pound increments. In other words, you’re receiving a total of 150 pounds of weights, making the price-per-set quite affordable. Plus, you receive an A-frame rack to store your weights on.
Each dumbbell has rubber-coated heads to help protect flooring. They also feature the hex shape to help prevent rolling.
The set offers a wide range of weights that are appropriate for most people starting out with strength training who don’t predict needing to lift more than 25 pounds per side. It’s a set that will grow with most beginner- to intermediate-level workouts.
- a good range of weights at a great per-pound price
- a set that is suitable for most beginner- to intermediate-level workouts
- hex dumbbell shape to prevent rolling
- rubber coating to protect surfaces
- includes a storage rack (you can choose the color) for improved space savings
- may not meet the needs of more advanced workouts
- some reviewers report that the stand is hard to assemble
Best heavy weight dumbbell
This 50-pound (22.7-kg) dumbbell pair from Balancefrom is made of cast iron and coated in rubber to protect your floor.
A textured chrome handle allows for an easy grip, and the hexagonal shape prevents rolling and allows for easy storage.
Reviewers call them heavy duty, durable, and a nice addition to a stocked home gym.
Some commented on a chemical smell from the dumbbell itself. This is a common issue for rubber-encased dumbbells — the smell is likely to dissipate with time, but for those sensitive to odors and chemicals, it may be best to search for dumbbells without the rubber casing.
- hex shape for roll prevention
- rubber casing to protect surfaces
- good price per pound for a heavy dumbbell
- sold as a pair
- buying a single, heavy dumbbell pair might be limiting for some workouts; may need to purchase other sets for a full-body routine
Best heavy weight dumbbell bundle
There’s no denying that the cost of this set of dumbbells might give you a bit of sticker shock, as it comes in just under $1,000. That said, you’re getting a total of 590 pounds of weight, including pairs of 5-, 8-, 10-, 12-, 15-, 20-, 25-, 30-, 35-, 40-, 45-, and 50-pound dumbbells.
That’s basically a full set and suitable for the vast majority of workouts, from beginner to advanced. Also, the per-pound cost is well under $2 per pound — much better than other, similar sets.
The dumbbells are hex-shaped to prevent rolling. They’re also constructed of cast iron with baked enamel rather than a rubber coating. While they may not be quite as surface-safe for scratches, they also won’t give off that rubbery chemical smell.
The lack of a rubber coating also helps with space savings. While a set of 12 pairs of dumbbells will always take up space, these have a slightly smaller footprint than most rubber-coated products on the market.
- good per-pound price
- hex shape to prevent rolling
- no rubbery chemical smell
- solid set appropriate for beginner, intermediate, and most advanced workouts
- full set of weights from 5 to 50 pounds
- total cost is still high at just under $1,000
- no coating to help protect surfaces
- 12 pairs of dumbbells take up a lot of room; you’ll likely need to purchase a storage rack as well
Most versatile dumbbell set
The EDOSTORY adjustable dumbbell set starts out like your typical plate-loaded adjustable dumbbell set: It features dumbbell handles, removable plate weights, and collars to keep the weights in place. But then it takes a sharp turn that makes this set more of a full home gym.
In addition to the dumbbell handles, the system also features pushup handles, a barbell connector, and a kettlebell bar that enable you to turn your basic plates and dumbbells into a weighted barbell and kettlebells, too.
With 88 pounds total in plate weights, you can adjust the weight you’re lifting from roughly 6 pounds per dumbbell to roughly 44 pounds per dumbbell. That makes for a system that’s appropriate for practically all fitness levels.
Reviewers say the quality is good and customer service is responsive. The removable parts and stackable plates also help with space savings.
Plate weights are rounded, so they are more likely to roll.
- highly versatile and easily adjustable for dumbbell, kettlebell, and barbell exercises
- for the amount of weight provided, the system doesn’t require much space
- nice padding and grips on the handles
- responsive customer service
- rounded plates are more likely to roll
- takes time to switch the weight between sets and exercises, which may hinder fast-paced workouts
- a bit of a learning curve when it comes to using the system in different ways
Best aquatic dumbbell
You may want to invest in the TheraBand Aquatic Dumbbell if you’re interested in exercising in the pool. While not a “standard” dumbbell, these can be purchased in light, medium, and heavy resistances.
The resistance is determined by the amount of foam included on the dumbbell head. The more foam, the heavier the resistance.
Because foam floats in water, performing exercises with these dumbbells submerged beneath the surface requires you to push and pull against the water, creating resistance as you go. The more foam and the harder you push or pull the dumbbell increases the intensity of the workout.
The heavy version requires 6 pounds of force to submerge the dumbbell, but once submerged, the resistance varies based on the exercise and how much force you use to push and pull the dumbbell.
The dumbbells come as a pair.
Not all land-based dumbbell exercises translate to a water workout with aquatic dumbbells. For instance, you can’t perform dumbbell squats, lunges, or deadlifts in the same manner you could perform them on land.
- comparatively inexpensive as the dumbbells are constructed of foam
- lightweight on land, good resistance when submerged
- perfect for resistance training in an aquatic setting
- only work in aquatic settings
- hard to know exactly how much resistance you’re working against
- can’t use them for all exercises that you can perform on land; particularly true of lower body exercises
Best kids’ dumbbell
Kids don’t need to engage in a structured weight training program. That said, if you regularly exercise at home, and your child wants to join in, it’s best to provide child-safe dumbbells for them to use.
This Redmon for Kids Fun and Fitness Dumbbell Set comes with 10 pieces, allowing your child to adjust their resistance as you adjust yours. But in reality, they won’t be lifting much weight — even fully loaded, each dumbbell weighs less than a pound.
The colorful set is kid-friendly and a good way to support your child’s interest in strength training. They can exercise along with you, without risking an injury.
- easy to adjust and use
- lightweight — no risk of injury
- colorful and appealing for kids
- good way to encourage your kids to learn about strength training
- lack of resistance likely won’t appeal to older kids or those who want to start a more legitimate strength training routine
Best travel dumbbell
Dumbbells aren’t very travel-friendly. They’re heavy, after all. But if you’re a frequent traveler who doesn’t love other travel-friendly workout equipment, like resistance bands or TRX trainers, you may want to purchase the Deiris water-fillable dumbbells.
The Deiris dumbbell pair is plastic and comes with plates you can fill with water in any faucet. Each plate fills up to roughly 5.5 pounds. This means that with the 8 fillable plates, you can lift a little more than 20-pounds per side.
When the plates aren’t filled, the whole set only weighs 2.2 pounds, perfect for packing in a suitcase or carry-on bag.
The system isn’t perfect — it can be hard to fill the two dumbbells up with the same amount of water, so the dumbbells may seem unbalanced. Also, some reviewers reported leaking and the challenge of filling the bags.
That said, for the price, it’s a good solution for dumbbell workouts when traveling.
- lightweight and packable for traveling
- adjustable up to roughly 20 pounds per dumbbell
- a challenge to fill evenly
- system may leak
|Price||Weight ranges available||Pros||Cons|
|FLYBIRD 5- to 25-lb adjustable||$$$||5–25 lbs in 5-lb increments; single dumbbell||• space savings|
easy to adjust
• good range of resistance options
|only a single dumbbell (not a set)|
|Yes4All 200-lb plate adjustable set||$$$$||200-lb set (10–100-lb dumbbells, adjustable)||• impressive range of weight options|
• plates can be used separately
• easy to adjust
• space savings compared to a full set of dumbbells
|• no rubber or neoprene coating|
• round plates more likely to roll
|Tru Grit 5-lb dumbbell||$||5-lb pair||• good price|
• hex shape prevents rolling
• neoprene coating for slip-proof grip
• sold as a pair
|•only a single resistance level|
• will need more dumbbells if you want to lift more weight
|Amazon Basics 52-pound dumbbell bundle||$$||3-lb, 5-lb, 8-lb sets + single 20-pound dumbbell||• versatile bundle |
• good for beginner workouts
• hex shape prevents rolling
• neoprene and rubber coating protects surfaces
|• 20-pound dumbbell is a single dumbbell rather than a set|
• may want to purchase more dumbbells in a mid-range as strength improves
|Amazon Basics 20-pound dumbbell||$||20-lb single dumbbell||• hex shape prevents rolling|
• rubber coating protects surfaces
|• sold as a single dumbbell|
• will need to purchase 2 to make a pair
|WF Athletic Supply 5- to 25-lb dumbbell set with rack||$$$$||5- to 25-lb sets in 5-lb increments + storage rack||• good price for a good range of dumbbell pairs|
• meets the needs of most beginner to intermediate strength workouts
• includes the rack for space-saving storage
• hex shape to prevent rolling
• rubber coating to protect surfaces
|• rack may be hard. to assemble|
• for more advanced lifters, the range of weights may not meet their needs (heavier weights are likely required)
|Balancefrom 50-lb dumbbell||$$$||50-lb pair||• sold as a pair|
• hex shape to prevent rolling
• rubber casing to protect surfaces
|only a single set — good for more advanced or heavier lifting, but less helpful for beginner or intermediate routines|
|WF Athletic Supply 590-lb dumbbell set||$$$$||12 dumbbell sets; 5-, 8-, 10-, 12-, 15-, 20-, 25-, 30-, 35-, 40-, 45-, and 50-lb pairs||• a complete set likely to meet the needs of most people|
• hex shape to prevent rolling
• smaller dumbbells without rubber casing for space savings
|• no rubber casing to protect surfaces|
• a significant investment, despite the wide range of weights included
|EDOSTORY Adjustable Dumbbell Set||$$$$||88-lb adjustable set, 6- to 44-lb per handle + kettlebell and barbell attachments||• extremely versatile set that offers more than dumbbells — kettlebell and barbell handles are included|
• good range of weights that meet the needs of most dumbbell workouts
|• rounded weights more likely to roll|
• time required to make adjustments to the resistance or to change handles
|TheraBand Aquatic Dumbbell||$$||“heavy” resistance; requires 6 lbs of force to submerge||• good option for adding resistance to aquatic workouts|
• lightweight for easy transport
• sold as a pair
|• only one resistance level (heavy)|
• not appropriate for land-based workouts
|Redmon for Kids Fun and Fitness Dumbbell Set||$||less than 1 lb||• fun way to safely include your child in your workout routine|
• “weights” are adjustable so your child can feel involved
• good way to teach form without using resistance
|these are toys — not appropriate for older children who want to learn to lift weights more seriously|
|Deiris Water-Fillable Dumbbells||$$||adjustable pair from roughly 5–20 lbs per dumbbell based on how much water is added||• good for frequent travelers (only weigh 2.2 pounds without water)|
• decent range of resistance for varied exercises and workouts
|• can be hard to fill with water|
• can be hard to match the water fill perfectly
• may leak or puncture with ongoing use
To choose the best affordable dumbbell, consider your current fitness level, goals, and budget.
Adjustable dumbbells are a great option for anyone looking to gain strength, as the weight is changeable based on your strength abilities. While this type might provide the most bang for your buck, it’s pricier than single-weight options.
A lightweight option is perfect for beginners and workouts like aerobics, while the heavy options are great for advanced exercisers looking to focus on strength.
Where can I get cheap dumbbells?
Online retailers like Amazon are a great place to look for inexpensive dumbbells, especially if you want to purchase a new set. That said, remember that dumbbells are all basically cast iron metal that may or may not have a protective coating. These materials can last (and last well) for decades.
You can always look for cheaper dumbbells at garage sales, second-hand sporting goods stores, and online marketplaces. In some cases, you may even be able to find gyms looking to offload their old dumbbells when purchasing a new set.
What is a good price for dumbbells?
Generally speaking, dumbbells tend to cost between $1.50–$3.00 per pound of weight, with the average hovering around $2.00–$2.50 per pound. If you can find a dumbbell or set of dumbbells for less than $2.00 per pound, you’ve likely found a good price.
Why do dumbbells cost so much?
Dumbbells are expensive because you’re paying for the weight of the metal. Even though the products themselves are typically simple in design, they’re heavy. And heavy materials cost money.
How much do 20-kg dumbbells cost?
The cost of 20-kg (45-pound) dumbbells will vary based on the retailer, product details, and whether you’re buying a single dumbbell or a pair. Using the general $1.50–$3.00 cost per pound, you can expect to pay anywhere between $68–$135 for a single dumbbell, or $136–$270 for a set.