A Guide to Climbing Chalk Bags: How to Use, Choose, and Wear Them

Climbing chalk bags are small pouches that hold and dispense climbing chalk. Climbers use chalk to improve their grip on rock surfaces by absorbing sweat and moisture from their hands. These chalk bags come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles. They are usually made of materials like nylon and cotton. Some chalk bags also have pockets for storing other climbing gear, brush holders for cleaning holds, and drawstring closures for easy access to chalk. Climbing chalk bags are vital for climbers because they allow them to reach their chalk quickly and conveniently while on the climb.

Having a chalk bag is important for climbers because it provides a convenient and accessible way to carry and apply climbing chalk. This is crucial for improving grip and preventing slippage. Chalk absorbs sweat and moisture from the hands. This improves friction on rock surfaces and allows climbers to keep a firm grip. Otherwise, climbers would have to carry chalk in their pockets or in a loose form without a chalk bag. This could be messy and difficult to access during a climb. A chalk bag also enables the exact and controlled application of chalk. It allows climbers to focus on their climb rather than their grip.

How to Use a Chalk Bag?

Using a chalk bag is easy. Just follow these simple steps:

Fill the Chalk Bag with Chalk

Make sure the chalk bag is filled with chalk before using it. Some chalk bags feature a separate compartment for chalk storage, while others can only be filled through the main opening. The amount of chalk to put in a chalk bag is determined by various factors. This includes the size of your chalk bag and your particular taste. As a general rule, fill the bag halfway to two-thirds full. This gives you enough space to spread the chalk around and ensure it adequately covers your hands. Too much chalk in the bag can cause it to spill and make a mess, while too little chalk can result in less effective hand covering.

Attach the Chalk Bag to your Harness

Most chalk bags have loops or attachment points that allow you to easily clip the bag to a carabiner. Use a locking carabiner for added security. It will prevent the chalk bag from accidentally becoming detached from your climbing harness. Clip the carabiner through the loops or attachment points on the chalk bag. This ensures that the gate is locked. Look for the gear loops or other attachment points on your harness. Clip the carabiner to one of these. Make sure the chalk bag is securely attached to the harness and that it won’t interfere with your climbing movements. Double-check the attachment before you start climbing. Make sure that the chalk bag is securely attached to your harness and that the carabiner is locked.

Apply Chalk to your Hands

Reach for the chalk bag and sprinkle some chalk into your hands when you need to increase your grip. Rub the chalk between your palms to ensure fair distribution and to limit the amount of dust produced.

Close the Chalk Bag

After you have applied the chalk, close the chalk bag to prevent the chalk from spilling out. Some chalk bags have drawstring closures, while others have zippers or buckles.

Repeat as Needed

Repeat the above steps as needed during your climb to maintain a secure grip. Some climbers prefer to reapply chalk before each hand placement, while others reapply less frequently.

How to Wear a Chalk Bag Properly?

Here are the steps to properly wear a chalk bag while climbing:

Choose a Location

Choose the optimum location for your chalk bag. This is normally near your waist or hip on your harness. Make sure that the location is conveniently accessible while still being secure enough to prevent the bag from shifting or swinging during a climb.

Attach it to your Harness

As I mentioned above, most chalk bags include a loop or a clip for attaching the bag to your climbing harness. Check that the loop or clip is securely attached to your harness.

Position the Chalk Bag

Adjust the chalk bag’s position so that it sits comfortably and securely on your waist or hip. It should be freely accessible while not impeding your movement or gear.

Check for Security

Before you begin climbing, ensure that the chalk bag is securely attached to your harness and will not shift or swing about while you climb.

Repeat as Needed

Repeat the above steps for each climb, and make adjustments as needed to ensure the chalk bag is worn properly and comfortably.

How to Choose the Right Climbing Chalk Bag?

Here are some factors to consider when choosing the right climbing chalk bag:


Chalk bags come in a variety of sizes ranging from small and compact to huge and expansive. When selecting the correct size of chalk bag, consider the amount of chalk you regularly use as well as the size of your other climbing gear.


Nylon, cotton, and synthetic fabrics can be used to make chalk bags. Consider the material’s durability and water resistance, as well as the bag’s weight and breathability.


Consider the best form of closure for you, such as a drawstring, zipper, or buckle. Drawstring closures are straightforward and simple to use, although zippers and buckles provide a more secure closure.


Some chalk bags have other features like pockets for storing other climbing gear, brush holders for cleaning holds, or a waist belt for greater security. Think about what attributes are crucial to you and your climbing style.


Chalk bags are available in a wide range of forms, from basic and conventional to trendy and colorful. Think about the style that best suits your personality and tastes.


Chalk bags can range in price from low-cost to high-end versions. Consider the features and quality you require, and then select a chalk bag that meets your budget.

Best Climbing Chalk Bags

There are plenty of options available in the market but these two are my favorites:

Black Diamond Mojo

Black Diamond Mojo
Material: Fleece/Wire/TPU
Weight: 3.2 oz.
Dimensions: 8 x 6 x 5 inches
Pockets: 2

The Black Diamond Mojo Zip chalk bag is designed to keep your chalk easily accessible, along with your keys, route topo, or phone. The bag features reinforced construction on the bottom to ensure durability and minimize wear and tear. This chalk bag has a zippered closure that allows for secure and quick access to the chalk. It also includes a brush holder, so you can clean holds as you climb, and a waist belt for added security. The waist belt is adjustable, allowing you to keep the chalk bag close at hand even on difficult climbs. The bag is built of tough materials that can resist the rigors of climbing.

The Black Diamond Mojo Chalk Bag has a compact shape that makes it easy to carry. It comes in four beautiful colors astral blue, Azul, black, and red. The chalk bag’s interior is lined with a waterproof material, ensuring that your chalk stays dry even in damp weather. The bag also has a large interior that allows you to carry a lot of chalk. The zipped closing makes it simple to refill the bag as necessary. Overall, the Black Diamond Mojo Chalk Bag is a well-designed and functional chalk bag that allows you to carry and utilize chalk in a secure and comfortable manner.

What I like: Extra pocket for brush and keys and you can even fit your phone in the pocket

What I don’t: The base isn’t super durable and it doesn’t support itself really well.

See the Black Diamond Mojo

Metolius Chalk Bag

Metolius Chalk Bag
Material: Cotton/polyester fleece
Weight: 3.8 oz.
Dimensions: 8 x 7 x 5 inches
Pockets: 1

The Metolius Chalk Bag is a classic and popular choice among climbers. The materials of this bag seem durable and there’s a drawstring closure for easy access to the chalk. The drawstring clasp can be adjusted to restrict the size of the aperture and keep chalk from flowing out. The bag also features a brush holder for cleaning holds while you climb. The Metolius Chalk Bag features a small shape that makes it easy to carry. The bag comes in five colors so you can match it with your other climbing gear. Like the Black Diamond Mojo, this bag also features a waterproof lining inside, which keeps your chalk dry even in wet conditions. The interior of the bag is wide enough to allow you to carry plenty of chalk. The drawstring closure allows you to easily refill the bag as needed.

The Metolius Chalk Bag has a soft and flexible rim that fits your waist. This soft rim allows you to wear it comfortably for longer periods. The bag also includes a waistband that keeps it close to reaching even on difficult climbs. There is an adjustable waist belt that allows you to get the perfect fit for your physique. The Black Diamond Mojo Zip chalk bag features a rounded ergonomic cut, which allows the whole hand to fit comfortably. Additionally, its fleece lining is designed to retain chalk effectively, which ensures good and consistent coverage.

What I like: Simple, does the job, and is affordable

What I don’t: The outer layer of the drawstring de-laminates quickly leaving the thinner inner string.

See the Metolius Chalk Bag


To conclude, climbing chalk bags are a piece of vital equipment for climbers. They provide a safe and simple way to transport and utilize chalk. When choosing your selection, consider factors such as closing style, size, and comfort. A climbing chalk bag, when used properly, can significantly increase your grip and performance on the wall.

Olivia Wade

Olivia Wade is the creative force behind Climb Daily. Born and raised in beautiful British Columbia, she brings her passion for photography, content creation, and outdoor exploration to the team. Learn more about Olivia Wade here.