The best double-pointed knitting needles

A detailed review of the most popular double-pointed knitting needles sets, their pros and cons and which ones you should buy

Do you want to start knitting socks? Or are you not satisfied with your current ones? And now you are wondering which double-pointed knitting needles are the best. Which set should you buy?

Then you came to the right place. In this buying guide, I will show you all the top double-pointed knitting needle sets and provide you with close-up macro shots of the tips and the pros and cons of the materials.

macro shot of the transition between body and tip of the karbonz dpns. you can see a little step

I am an avid sock knitter with 30+ years of experience under my belt, so I’ll try to chip in my personal experience with all of these dpns on the way. A lot of the needles may look very similar but, as always, the devil hides in the details.

Reading tip: How to knit in the round with dpns. Also, check out my tutorial with 10 tips and tricks for knitting in the round like a pro.

I’ve seen a lot of people giving up on knitting with double-pointed needles, and often I suspected they were just using the wrong brand for them. So foremost, this review is meant to help you find the right set for YOU, and not just provide you with personal favorite ones (that would be the Knitter’s Pride Karbonz).

Anyway, let’s dive right into my list of the best double-pointed knitting needles, eh?

Note: I earn a small commission for purchases made through links in this article.

Which material is best when it comes to double-Pointed knitting needles?

double-pointed knitting needles made from various materials and different brands

If you ever went to a craft store or had a look online, then you might already know that double-pointed knitting needles are available in quite a lot of different materials. From carbon to plastic, the number of available choices can actually sometimes be a bit overwhelming.

And I want you to understand that no two knitters are alike: It’s not only the projects and the yarn choice that differs, but also the knitting style, the experience, and the overall knitting speed. And as a result, the perfect double-pointed knitting needles for me might actually be the worst choice for you. So, here’s a very brief overview of the different materials and their pros and cons.

  • Bamboo: Light, inexpensive, warm in your hands, and has a nice friction that prevents stitches from falling off so easily. Usually has rather round tips, not suitable for complicated patterns. Not particuarily durable, may splinter or break.
  • Hardwood: Almost as light and warm as bamboo but often more expensive with a smoother finish with sharper tips. Often especially pretty and resonably durable.
  • Aluminum: Very light, often has nice sharp tips while not being slippery at all. Can bend quite easily (especially small sizes).
  • Coated aluminium: Often with polished and super slick tips. The body of these double-pointed needles creates the right kind of friction to prevent stitches from falling off too easily while still being reasonably fast to knit with. The coating may rub off over time and small sizes will end up crooked fast.
  • Stainless steel: Rather durable material with often super sharp tips. Fast to knit with and usually quite light. Small sizes will still end up crooked, though not as fast as aluminum. Feels cold in your hands.
  • Coated steel: Super fast to knit with but often on the heavier side. Depending on the coating, allergies may be an issue. Quite resistant to wear and tear – except the super small sizes. Feels cold in your hand.
  • Carbon: Very light, warm and extraordinarily durable. Very hard to break these. The body has a nice friction while the polished tips (if they have them) are super fast to knit with. Available in ultra small sizes. Often a noticeable transition between tips and body.
  • Plastic: Cheap needles for beginners and practising. Not especially durable but quite light. Can feel a bit sticky.

If you go through the list above, you may notice that none of the available materials for double-pointed knitting needles is perfect. At the end of the day, you need to consider which compromise is acceptable for you.

Are you a beginner, or are you super-advanced already? Do you like lace or do you just want to knit some plain vanilla socks or a simple ribbed beanie?

Either way, let’s take a look at the different brands.

#1 Knitter’s Pride

Probably no other brand has so many different double-pointed knitting needles on the market. I selected the best four best types in my opinion. Please note that Knitter’s Pride (Americas) and KnitPro (Europe) are identical and interchangeable.

Karbonz Double-Pointed knitting needles

knitters pride karbonz double pointed knitting needles next to a full set

The Karbonz range by Knitter’s Pride is my all-time favorite choice when it comes to double-pointed knitting needles. I use small dpns a lot and for the longest time, that basically meant I had to replace my needles every 2 or 3 socks because the needles ended up all crooked.

karbonz double pointed knitting needles by knitters pride close-up

The Karbonz needles, on the other hand, have a super durable body made out of carbon. It’s virtually impossible to break them while knitting. Yet the material is super light, warm to the touch, and has a nice kind of friction that keeps your stitches on the needle. The durable material allows for the production of double-pointed knitting needles as small as size 0000 (1mm).

the tips of the knitter's pride karbonz dpns sharp, but not too sharp

The tips are glued to the body and are very slick (so allow for fast knitting) but only moderately sharp. The little kink around the transition between metal and carbon is the only weakness of the needles. You notice it slightly when sliding your fingers across but stitches never get stuck or anything (note: the extra small sizes don’t have the metal tips).

the tips of the karbonz 1.00mm double-pointed needles up close
1 mm karbonz dpns

Now, these double-pointed knitting needles will not last forever either. At one point, the coating of the tips will rub off. After years, the tips may come loose, and they do break when you step on them. Still, they are vastly more durable than any set I am aware of. The discrepancy is less noticeable when we are talking about 4 or 5 mm needles. Here, you have a lot of options that are similar or even better.

Buy the Karbonz dpns on Amazon | Or on Etsy

Recommended for: People who love to knit with small sizes (so below 3 mm) and who focus on moderately complicated patterns.

Zing DPNS

aluminium double pointed knitting needles zing by knitters pride

The knitter’s pride Zing dpns are a colorful addition for anyone who wants a combination of super-light needles and moderately sharp tips. The price is also quite competitive as well. The body of the needles is coated so there’s a little bit of extra resistance to keep your stitches on the needles while the tips are polished to allow for reasonably fast knitting.

macro shot of the tips of the knitter's pride zing. the tips are somewhat squarish

Like all aluminum needles, they are only moderately durable. So, the coating may rub off, and the smaller sizes will bend quite easily. I find the tips are a bit squarish and wish they were a bit rounder.

Buy the Knitter’s Pride Zing on Amazon here | Or get them on Etsy

Recommended for: Advanced beginners+ who love light needles, simple tips, and some color

Nova DPNS

knitter's pride nova double pointed knitting needles - super fast needles

Interestingly enough, it’s very difficult to find good pure metal needles and the Nova Platina by Knitter’s Pride are, if you ask me, by far the fastest double-pointed knitting needles on the market. They are just so super slick.

tips of the knitter's pride nova dpns close-up

The tips are sharp but not ultra sharp and the taper is actually quite long. I feel it’s a very good combination for speed knitting. Unsurprisingly, they are quite durable, though the size 2 mm needles will not last a lifetime. Also, the Nova dpns are a bit heavier than most other needles.

The Nova Platina dpns are also available as Cubics (so not round but rectangular). The ergonomic shape is meant to relieve hand-point.

Buy the Knitter’s Pride Nova dpns on Amazon| Or buy them on Etsy

Recommended for: Intermediate patterns and advanced knitters who want to go as fast as possible.

Dreamz DPNS

knitter's pride dreamz double pointed knitting needles

If you look around my blog, then you will see my knitting with the (Symfonie) Dreamz double-pointed needles a lot. They are my go-to set for almost all my knitting tutorials. The reason for that is quite simple: I do believe they are probably the prettiest dpns on the market.

the tips of the knitter's pride dreamz double-pointed needles closeup

But setting that aside, they are also very light, warm, quite durable, and have reasonably sharp tips. Certainly not the sharpest on the planet but I do feel they are lovely for intermediate and beginner projects without overly complicated stitches. I personally believe they shine the most for those larger needle sizes (4 mm and above). The smaller sizes (below 3 mm) are maybe a bit too flexible for my liking.

Shop the Dreamz dpns on Amazon | Or buy them on Etsy

Recommended for: Beginners and knitters who love the feeling of wooden needles but want it prettier and more durable than bamboo and prefer to knit with larger sizes.

knitters pride royale double pointed knitting needles with wooden body and metal tips

Note: Knitter’s Pride also offers the Royale dpns. These are like the Dreamz but with metal tips. There are faster to knit with but do have a slightly noticeable transition between body and tips.

the tips of the knitters pride royale dpns - metal with a little hole in it

I actually think it’s quite the smart product that offers the best of both worlds, so to speak. Pretty and not too slick & fast to knit tips. They do have some weird holes in the tips (probably for screwing purposes or so). I couldn’t say you notice these, though.

Buy the Royale dpns on amazon | Here’s a direct link to Etsy

#2 HiyaHiya double-pointed knitting needles

hiyahiya double-pointed knitting needles with the sharp tips

When it comes to the best double-pointed knitting needles for lace knitting, I don’t think there is a finer product than the HiyaHiya needles. These tips have a luxuriously long and stiletto sharp tip and the stainless steel offers the right kind of friction to prevent your stitches from falling off too easily.

close-up of the hiyahiya dpns - the tips are super stilletto sharp

They are quite light on top of that and reasonably durable. As they are hollow inside, the smaller sizes will end up crooked fast when doing a lot of complicated stitches but that would be the case with all other competitors as well.

chiagoo vs hiyahiya double-pointed knitting needles - comparing the tips

You know, when it comes to interchangeable knitting needles, the verdict between HiyaHiya and ChiaoGoo (which both produce very similar products) is less clear and probably boils down to which cables you prefer. But when you look at the double-pointed knitting needles, I do think there is a razor-sharp (excuse the pun) difference. Plus, the taper is quite a bit longer as well!

Buy the HiyaHiya 6 Inch Sharp Double Pointed Needles here | Shop them on Etsy

Recommended for: Lace knitters and people who want their tips as sharp as possible

#3 Signature needle arts

signature needle arts double-pointed knitting needles outside of their protection tube

The award for the most expensive double-pointed knitting needles definitely goes to Signature Needle Arts. The U.S.-based company produces very fine coated aluminum needles that come with a hefty price tag. A single set will relieve you of $67 or more. That’s some serious money.

the tips of the signature needle arts double-pointed knitting needles with super sharp lace tips

At the same time, I do have to admit that the needles do glide through your knitting like a hot knife through butter. The tips have a lovely sharpness, they are polished in a special way to allow for super-fast knitting, while the coated body offers quite a bit of friction to hold your stitches on the needles.

macro shot of the signature needle arts double-pointed knitting needles

Setting the price aside, the needles have two major flaws, however. They are only available down to 2.25 mm. This probably has to do with durability issues. Aluminum is rather malleable and nobody wants to spend that kind of money on needles that end up crooked very fast.

Also, the needles produce a kind of very noticeable chirring sound when you glide them across each other. And mind you, that happens a lot when you knit in the round. If you are not very sensitive in that area that’s probably nothing to worry about, though. On a more positive note, they are the only company I know where you can choose between 4, 5, 6, or 8 inches long dpns.

You can buy them on their website (and some selected LYS also stock them)

Recommended for: Very good product with outstanding knitting qualities when money is no consideration and you don’t need small sizes. Probably better for more complicated patterns.

#4 Lykke

the lykke driftwood double-pointed knitting needles in size 3 mm

One brand that has gained a lot of popularity in recent years is Lykke. They produce fine driftwood needles that look quite amazing. In fact, if I would have to decide on the best double-pointed knitting needles only based on their appearance, they would probably make the race.

the tips of the lykke driftwood double-pointed knitting needles - well rounded but long taper

I would place the material somewhere in between bamboo and other hardwood needles. So, the surface has been polished but still retains a bit of its natural grain. This means, they are not the fasted needles on the planet but this also keeps your stitches on the needle. Plus, they feel pleasantly warm in your hands.

close-up of the lykke driftwood dpns - there's black connector in the middle

The tips are a bit blunter and the bigger needle sizes have a black connector piece in the middle. There is no noticeable transition and, aside from looking pretty, it also displays the needle size (the super small sizes are only dyed black in the middle).

bending a size 2mm lykke dpns with your fingers
The super-small sizes are maybe a bit too flexible, tho!

Speaking from personal experience and what I read online, the needles are reasonably durable and I would definitely place them above Bamboo. At the same time, I would probably stay away from the super small sizes as these are very easy to snap through (that is true for all other wooden needles as well, though).

Buy the Lykke dpn set on Amazon | Get them on Etsy

Recommended: Advanced knitters who love knitting with bamboo but want a little extra luxury for their hands and added durability.

#5 ChiaoGoo

chiaogoo double-pointed knitting needle set in a nice cotton pouch

The Chinese company ChiaoGoo has become quite a household name when it comes to interchangeable knitting needles. They also produce double-pointed knitting needles in stainless steel and bamboo.

close-up of the tips of the chiagoo stainless steel dpns

The tips are medium sharp but do have a very short taper. As a result, the needles are versatile but probably not ideal for lace knitting or other patterns with complicated stitches like double increases or cables without a cable needle.

chiaogoo double pointed knitting needles stainless steel

The body of the needles is not utterly smooth. The steel has a bit of a texture. On the plus side, this keeps your stitches from falling off too easily. On the negative side, this means these dpns are not the fastest on the market and they produce a strange kind of noise when gliding across each other.

The needles are hollow inside and quite light as a result. But if you buy one of the smaller sizes (below 3mm), this also means they end up crooked rather fast. I do like the little pouches the full sets come in. Quite useful and easy to store (especially as they are not as big as other needle cases).

Buy the ChiaoGoo dpns on Amazon | Or get them on Etsy

Recommended for: Intermediate knitters who don’t knit complicated patterns

Note: ChiaoGoo also has a range of bamboo dpns. Speaking from personal experience, their bamboo products might actually be the best on the market. I did not include them here because I personally don’t knit with bamboo needles anymore. They also have mini cable needles as another option for knitting in the round.

#6 Addi

The German family business addi has been a fixture on the knitting needle market for almost two hundred years. The unique interchangeable knitting needles certainly offer a very viable alternative for everyone who hates screws. Personally, I am not all that convinced of their double-pointed knitting needles.

Addi Colibri

addi colibri double pointed knitting needles - super light

The probably most exciting product of the lot are the addi Colibri. These are coated pure aluminum needles that are exceedingly light. They also have unique tips. One end is blunt while the other end has a very sharp lace tip. So, if you are someone who pushes their needle tips often, this could be a nice solution for you.

the two sides of the addi colibri dpns - one side has blunt tips the other sharp lace tips

Also, the fact that each needle of a set has a different color makes it easy to use them as orientation. Say, the red marks the beginning of your round and blue the start of your heel or so.

addi colibri dpns close-up in different colors

I do have to say, however, that these needles are sadly not all that fast to knit with due to the coating also covering the tips. On top of that, the needles bend very easily – even the larger sizes. The coating is not all that resistant to wear and tear either, though addi has a very lenient lifetime warranty (that actually works).

Get the addi Colibri on Amazon| Or buy them on Etsy

Recommended for: Intermediate lace knitters and people with a light grip

Classic sock needles (“Premium”)

classic addi double-pointed knitting needles steel made from metal

Addi started in 1829, so it comes as no big surprise that they also offer classic metal double-pointed knitting needles. Back in the day, these were typically 20 cm as big, knee-high stockings required quite a lot of stitches on your needles. Sadly, they don’t produce them in 15 cm and as a result, the needles are quite heavy.

tips of the classic addi sock knitting dpns from close-up

The tips are rather rounded with a short taper. So, probably more suitable for plainer sock patterns. On the plus side, they are available down to size 1.5mm. Also, these needles are slick. So, if you want to knit stockinette stitch in the round as fast as possible, these might become your best friend.

Buy the Premium dpns here on Etsy

Recommended for: Very classic patterns and people who want to go as fast as possible

Note: Addi offers quite a lot of other (novelty) solutions for sock knitting as well, but as this article is about dpns, I didn’t feel like mentioning them.

#7 Prym

prym aluminium double pointed knitting needles

The last brand I want to mention here is Prym. I started out knitting on these needles, knit my first pair of socks with their dpns, and I do believe they are a very reasonable choice for beginners and people who only occasionally knit in the round.

close-up of the tips of the prym aluminium dpns

Their pure aluminum double-pointed knitting needles are quite a classic. They appear greyish as if coated and the surface is quite slow to knit with. And that actually makes them ideal for people who are just starting out. Later on, they are probably too slow. Still, the tips are actually quite sharp.

The smaller sizes suffer the same fate of all small aluminum needles, though. They end up crooked faster than you can look. And I noticed how the coating (?) at the tips rubs off over time and that can be uncomfortable to knit with.

prym bamboo double pointed knitting needles in size 6 mm

Prym also has a range of bamboo needles which I feel are quite nice. They are both affordable and have somewhat nice tips in fact. They are surprisingly sharp and nice to knit with (I used them for some of my beginner tutorials).

They are certainly less fancy than the bamboo needles by ChiaoGoo or Addi but have a lower price tag as well. So, if you are looking for a solid product for your first pair of socks, this could be a good choice.

the tips of prym bamboo double pointed knitting needles

Buy them on Etsy

Recommended for: Affordable Beginners and slower knitters looking for affordable products

Note: Prym products can be a bit expensive in the U.S. due to import taxes etc.

What length of double-pointed needles do you need – 10, 15 or 20 cm?

You might have noticed that double-pointed knitting needles come in different lengths. Most brands let you select between 15 and 20 cm (6 and 8 inches). And a lot of beginners will probably wonder which size is better? Well, that depends on your projects but here are some things to consider:

comparing 15 cm dpns with 10 cm double-pointed knitting needles

When you are knitting in the round with dpns, you have to slide the needles around with every turn to secure your stitches. And the longer the needle, the farther you need to slide them. Also, your project is easier to hold, the smaller those needles are. Those large ends sticking out can make things a bit unwieldy.

As a rule of thumb, I would say, buy the smallest size that can accommodate your stitches. For the typical calf-high sock 15 cm (6 in) will be all you need. If you plan to knit hats, cowls, or knee-high socks, 20 cm ( 8″) are recommended.

There are also smaller lengths available. Not all brands offer them. 10 cm (4 in) double-pointed knitting needles can be the perfect choice for knitting the fingers of gloves or when you want to finish the last rounds of a hat – or any other super small diameter project.

Now, if you are worried that stitches may fall off, you may want to pick longer needles. Needle stoppers really are no feasible option when knitting in the round after all (except you want to spend half your time re-attaching them). Do keep in mind, however, that this also makes your project a bit more difficult to handle.

Either way, that’s my review of the best double-pointed knitting needles on the market. Comment below in case you still have any questions.

the best double pointed knitting needle - a detailed review of all the popular brands and materials

22 thoughts on “The best double-pointed knitting needles”

  1. Thank you Norman , for this, I shall purchase some knitters pride karbonz when next looking for dpns. I must admit that despite watching your videos on knitting socks on dpns and one or two others, I have succumbed to knitting socks on straight needles, they obviously have a seam but I am more successful using them and my fingers are not sore, whereas on dpns or small circulars they do get sore. I am 76 so my fingers are pretty old like me, and I have only got involved in sock knitting during the past few Months. I do have it in mind though to try dpns again as I am more experienced now. Thank you again, and I shall buy them from your email so that you get some commission, so this is going into my file called knitting socks.

    Reply
    • Hey Juliet,
      if you notice that one thing is better for you and your body and it brings you joy, you know, that’s already one thing to celebrate. Sure, one should always try to expand their horizon but never force it, okay?
      That being said, the Karbonz are super light so that’s definitely something your hands will appreciate!

      Reply
  2. this is timely as I am ready to try your HOW TO KNIT SOCKS FOR BEGINNERS pattern, for my first ever double-pointed needle project! thank you!

    Reply
  3. Du solltest mal die addi Novel-Nadelspiele ausprobieren, wenn sie denn endlich mal erhältlich sein sollten…die Novel-Rundstricnadeln haben mir nämlich sehr gut gefallen, aber ich bei vielen Dinge bevorzuge ich das gute alte Nadelspiel 🙂

    VG
    Andrea

    Reply
    • Hallo Andrea,
      ja, die werd ich sicher auch noch ausprobieren. Wobei ich grundsätzlich nicht sooo überzeugt bin davon. Ist find ich mehr neh spielerei als echter effekt 🙁

      Reply
      • Ich fand sie sehr angenehm in den Händen und auch sehr leicht, das ist mir bei DPNs immer wichtig. Nicht so klebrig wie Bambus/Holz, aber eben auch nicht so super glatt und unangenehm wie Metall.

        VG

        Reply
  4. Do you think perhaps the holes in the Knitters Pride Royale are for placing a lifeline? I’ve never used one with socks or other projects knit on dpns, but if I were knitting lace I might.

    I love two features you write about:
    having one end blunt and one sharp
    varied needle colors to signal the end of a round, etc.

    Reply
  5. Hello Norman – Have you ever sharpened bamboo needles? I hold the yarn in my right hand and realize that I bump the working needle hard into the stationary one to grab the next stitch. My US 7s & 8s are so blunt I couldn’t do a SSK if my life depended on it.

    Thanks.

    Reply
    • I personally haven’t. But I was told that a lot of fellow knitters file down their bamboo needles with an emery board. Apparently works wonders if there are splinters as well.

      By the way, if you have problems with SSK, you can also slip one stitch, knit one, and then pass the slipped stitch over. Should work with every needle.

      Reply
  6. I’ve been using some Addi FlexiFlips. They have two different ends (one sharper than the other), and the flexible section in the middle seems to help with the bending issue I was getting on other needs (although, as with Carbonz, you sometimes need to help stitches over the join). A small plus of only having to use 3 needles for your socks as well, instead of 4+.

    Reply
    • Yeah, I know these products I wanted to keep it to classic dpns in this article. It’s already long enough..but thx for sharing your experience.

      Reply
  7. I recently bought the Carbon prym.ergonomics. I’m half way through my first sock with them, and I really like them so far! I quite like the drop-shaped tips (I also have a few of their circular needles) because I tend to split the yarn, and with the drop-tips that doesn’t happen so easily. The drop-tips also make it easier to knit very tight stitches, like k3tog.
    They are super light, but they already bend a little. They are 2mm – which is what I normally use for sock yarn, as I am a notoriously loose knitter…

    Reply
  8. My absolute favorite DPN’s are by Lantern Moon. They are 5” Rosewood size 1 with really sharp tips. I cast on 60 stitches for socks and that works well on these needles. I do use cheap box-store bamboo, but my first choice is the Lantern Moon needles. I bought them at my LYS when they were still in business. Thank you for this video.

    Reply
  9. I love DPNs and have many brands. I have a full set of Zings/KnitPro but was surprised by your comment and picture of your Zings. My Zings’ points are not squared off/flattened off like yours are in your picture. They come to a point like most other DPNs do. I also agree that HiyaHiya’s are one of the best DPN’s, especially the HiyaHiya Sharps, although I do have to be careful that I don’t impale my finger, then I’ll have to wear a band-aid for a few days. I’m also surprised about you comment about your DPNs frequently become crooked. I think that only happened to me once with a really cheap bamboo small size dpn, never on any HiyaHiya Brand and definitely not any stainless/metal dpn. How does one go about bending a stainless steel/metal dpn by just knitting with them? Weird.

    Reply
    • Well, I think all brands change the tips ever so often.and I guess that’S what they did. If you look at the pictures on the websites, you can see that they also have these tips.
      As for bending them…only happens with the small sizes. If you look at the video, it doesn’t even take a lot of force – they are quite flexible to begin with.

      Reply
  10. Excellent review. I have such an assortment of dpn’s! I’ve learned to make the adjustments when using each type . It certainly beats buying more needles. I like the highly polished birchwood ones and, they’re beautiful. Love using dpn’s. Thank you for a well written summary.

    Reply
  11. Super! You made a very well done review of all the DPNS on the market!
    Concise and at the same time detailed, comprehensive with beautiful picture of the needles, with suggestion of use without pressure on your personal favorite. This article is a gem!
    I only can imagine the time you needed to take all these shots AND to know each one of these needles. Thank you very much.

    Reply
    • Very happy to hear you recognize the effort it takes and appreciate it. It does indeed take a while but the internet already has too many reviews of ppl who don’t even own the needles and use PR pictures from the companies. I thought I’d present my readers with something useful instead!

      Reply
  12. Very interesting & thorough article, thank you! I am a fan of the Prym Ergonomic dpns. For me, they’re excellent for most of the knitting I do, lots of colorwork with DK & worsted weight yarns, hats, toys, sweaters.

    Reply

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