So I want to play Unarmed in Skyrim, so I got the Gloves of the Pugilist and when I disenchanted them and put that Fortify Unarmed on my gauntlets it changed the enchantment to 'Additional 1 damage to unarmed' whereas before I learned the Fortify Unarmed, the Gloves of the Pugilist was 'Additional 10 damage to unarmed'. I even took some Enchanter's Potions, but it didn't do anything??

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    You'll need to get more skilled with enchanting in order for the enchantments to be more powerful. Someone in the answers will likely give you tips on exactly what influences enchanting power.
    – user973
    May 23, 2016 at 19:21

2 Answers 2


Unlike many other enchanted items one can find early in the game, you can think of the Gloves of the Pugilist as having been crafted by a relatively skilled enchanter. You may not want to disenchant them until you have invested a bit in your own enchanting skill.

  1. The level of your enchanting skill counts! Before you make significant progress in your enchanting skill, you'll be unlikely to improve on found objects. Enchanting Potions can boost this skill, as can wearing exactly 4 items of Ahzidal's armor. But until you are sporting a final number near 80, you will likely be unimpressed. Sorry, them's the facts. On the bright side, End-game numbers over 140 (100 base, +25 Enchanter's Elixir, +10 Ahzidal's Armor, +10 Seeker of Sorcery) are not at all difficult to come by. A skilled Alchemist can do better than +25 with their own brews.
  2. Use Grand Souls for any serious enchant other than Muffle or Water Breathing (for which petty souls are fine). Other soul sizes are used for either weapon fuel or for practice/profit enchantments (Banish or Fortify Stealth). To avoid wasting quality soul gems in which you have trapped undersized souls, drop them on the floor/ground to release an undersized soul. Correctly sized souls are not released by dropping the gem.
  3. The Enchanting Perk Insightful Enchanter as well as levels of the Enchanter Perk may be of value for this particular enchantment.

Further tips for going Unarmed in Skyrim:

  1. Get your Heavy Armor skill to at least 30 & purchase the Fists of Steel perk. Enchant & Wear "Heavy" class gloves.

  2. Play as a beast race. Khajiit is best but Argonian is still better than either Man or Mer.

  3. There is no Unarmed skill. Your damage will be relatively static throughout the game, while your opponents will level up with you. The only boosts you'll see during the game are going to come from Fists of Steel with possible help from smithing and any bonus points you can squeeze out of Fortify Unarmed via the perks and skill levels of Enchanting and Alchemy. Going will get tough.

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    You missed the single most important factor: the size of the soul used. May 23, 2016 at 19:32
  • @DanmakuGrazer Doh! I use petty souls for muffle & waterbreathing & grand souls for all other enchants. Everything else is weapon fuel.
    – tjd
    May 23, 2016 at 19:40
  • You're right that there's no Unarmed skill - the enchantment provides a raw damage increase to attacks made with no weapon equipped.
    – JonK
    May 23, 2016 at 19:40

Your enchantment bonuses depend heavily on your enchanting skill. You need to level enchanting before you can create anything with a worthwhile bonus. In order to do this:

  1. Acquire (buy, steal, loot) lots of low-level soul gems.
  2. When they are empty, go out into the wilderness or raid a dungeon with non-human enemies to fill them with some souls (use a soul trap weapon or the soul trap spell).
  3. Acquire (buy, steal, loot, craft) lots of cheap clothes, jewelry and weapons.
  4. Enchant said trash with the enchantment you know which results in the highest item value.
  5. Sell your enchanted items to NPCs (by the way: enchanting a stolen item "launders" it. It is no longer considered stolen and can be sold to any NPC, not just fences).
  6. Repeat until your enchanting skill is high enough that an enchant with a grand soul gem gives you a proper bonus.
  • It can be useful to do this in conjunction with leveling smithing. Craft an item, enchant it, sell it. Iron daggers with damage enchantments can make you a lot of money.
    – DCShannon
    May 24, 2016 at 19:22

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