Know your Gloves: Protection Against Chemical Exposure

Know your Gloves: Protection Against Chemical Exposure

Aug 15th 2018

Most hand injuries, exposures and skin diseases are easily preventable by wearing protective gloves. Unfortunately, sometimes they are not used because a worker may feel that, besides getting in the way of the hazard, they also get in the way of doing the job. That's why it is crucial to choose gloves to suit both needs: dexterity and personal protection. When choosing a glove, it should be selected on the basis of the material being handled, the particular hazard involved and their suitability for the operation being conducted. With so many choices in hand protection, matching the right glove to a specific work environment can be confusing. To help alleviate some of that confusion, we will discuss the aspects of latex, nitrile and neoprene gloves, so you can make the right choice for your intended use.

Latex Gloves

Natural rubber, or latex, gloves are the most common type of glove used in occupational settings. However, latex gloves are not very chemical-resistant and are mainly used in the food and the medical industry, because they don’t protect well against bloodborne pathogens. The main concern when using latex is the possibility of an allergic reaction to the powder coating in the gloves.

Nitrile Gloves

Nitrile gloves have a good, general chemical resistance and can be less expensive than other gloves. As a result, they are used in a wider variety of applications than most gloves. Nitrile gloves resist gasoline, kerosene and other petroleum solvents well. In an effort to prevent latex allergies, medical gloves are often made out of nitrile because it is also resistant to oils and fats in the body. Nitrile gloves are not recommended for use with ketones, strong oxidizing acids and organic chemicals containing nitrogen and also tend to have a rather poor flame resistance.

Neoprene Gloves

Neoprene gloves provide excellent chemical resistance to a broad range of hazardous chemicals including acids, alcohols, oils and inks. Another characteristic of this polymer is its flexibility and dexterity, so they’re great in situations that need good sensitivity and grip. Neoprene gloves are not recommended for use with inorganic oxidizing agents, such as concentrated nitric or chromic acids.

Nitrile Gloves has been a supplier and distributor of single use disposable exam gloves for over 25 years. In this time, we’ve learned a great deal about the specifications and features that deliver dependable performance. That’s why we won’t compromise on quality just to sell the cheapest glove on the market. We focus on selling gloves that give you best-in-class solutions for your needs at the lowest price available. If you’d like to learn more contact us at or call us toll free at 888-802-6449.