Know Your Glove Materials: Part III Vinyl


The second generation of disposable gloves, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or vinyl, followed latex gloves.

As a result of the growing awareness of HIV in the 1980s, the health care industry needed a disposable glove to create a barrier between medical professionals and bloodborne pathogens. This gave rise to latex gloves but due to a number of people developing latex allergies, vinyl gloves were developed as an alternative. Now, the wholesale vinyl gloves are an industry changer.

Vinyl gloves are popular in the janitorial/sanitation, food processing, professional salon and food service industries.

What is vinyl?
Individuals may be more accustomed to seeing this synthetic glove material in another form – PVC piping – but it has had many uses.

Scientists accidentally discovered vinyl through various experiments carried out during the 19th century. German inventor Friedrich Heinrich August Klatte first patented the material in 1913, when he found a way to use sunlight to polymerize vinyl chloride. Since that time, researchers determined which additives to include in the material to make it more flexible. Besides disposable gloves, vinyl is used to make bottles, toys, credit cards, gutters and a long list of other products.

“Vinyl gloves are used in the food processing and food service industries, among other industries.”

What are the benefits of vinyl gloves?
Vinyl gloves are optimal for tasks that have a short duration, which is why they are more popular in certain industries. In food processing, for instance, employees must change their gloves each time they change tasks. As such, they do not need a glove that has superior durability. Vinyl gloves are more cost effective than latex or nitrile while offering the appropriate tear and puncture resistance for industries where they are used.

Furthermore, vinyl offers chemical resistance, which is why these gloves are popular in the janitorial/sanitation sector. Gloves must be changed often in this industry as well, and employees need barriers against bloodborne pathogens and the cleaners and solvents they use. For example, vinyl gloves can guard against hydrofluoric acid, nitrilotriacetate and phosphoric acid, all of which can be found in cleaning products.

One exciting innovation is antimicrobial vinyl gloves, which prevent the growth of microorganisms by disrupting cell walls so the microorganisms cannot grow on the glove. This feature is built into the glove material rather than sprayed on so that users cannot rub or wash away the additional protection. This is a key benefit in food processing industry, where there are dangers of contamination as a result of poor hygiene and foodborne diseases.

Wholesale vinyl gloves can be purchased in powdered and powder-free as well as industrial-and exam-grade options. There are also blue vinyl gloves, which can serve two purposes. The color acts a way to avoid cross contamination when food processing and food service employees are switching between tasks and makes the glove easier to spot in the event of a glove loss.

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Unexpected Uses for Disposable Gloves: Fishing


Who would have thought that disposable gloves could be an excellent holiday gift! According to The Vancouver Columbian, nitrile gloves are a perfect holiday gift for individuals who enjoy outdoor activities such as fishing.

Many anglers like to wear gloves when they are on the water, and the holiday season is the perfect time to promote nitrile gloves. In Vancouver’s lower Columbia area, for example, fishers typically use the gloves during the spring chinook salmon season, according to the source.

One key selling point for glove usage while fishing is gloves are useful when releasing fish, Field & Stream reported. Anglers need to grasp the fish without harming it’s vital organs by holding too tightly. A textured nitrile glove provides the necessary grip.

Additionally, the Vancouver Columbian noted these gloves are useful for sardine wrapping a lure. Because there is a barrier between wearers and the sardines, the scent of the wearers’ hands will not get on the bait. Plus, because these gloves offer top-notch dexterity, they are suitable for the minute tasks that come with fishing, such as stringing a lure or cleaning fish.

With these advantages in mind, it is a great idea to purchase nitrile gloves along with their other fishing-related gifts. Not to mention, they are great to have on have on hand for boat motor repairs and cleanup.

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All About Powdered Gloves


If disposable glove wearers need a product that is easier to slip on their hands, powdered products are the solution. There are powdered latex, nitrile and vinyl gloves available.

The history of powdered gloves
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, researchers began searching for a way to facilitate easier glove donning in surgical applications in the late 1800s. Early methods included wetting the glove material and using various powders, such as talcum powder and a powder made from Lycopodium spores, which are ground pines or club moss. However, both of these powders led to postoperative complications.

Food-grade cornstarch began appearing in gloves by 1947, and by the 1970s, it grabbed the largest market share. Compared to the previous two powders, cornstarch has necessary absorptive properties and does not lead to irritation. Although this powder is currently the most commonly used, gloves are also powdered with calcium or lactose, according to Infection Control Today.

These dusting powders are applied to the gloves near the end of the manufacturing process. After the glove forms are dipped in the glove materials and excess proteins and other residues are removed through the leaching process, the gloves are powdered before they are stripped from their forms. The FDA noted the cornstarch powder mixture is 2 percent magnesium oxide. This keeps the powder from turning into a paste or otherwise thickening.

What are the benefits of powdered gloves?
In the past, natural rubber latex was the main material used for disposable gloves. Latex is a flexible material that closely conforms to the hand, a feature that makes donning difficult for some wearers. This point became more pronounced when glove usage increased as a result of growing awareness of HIV in the 1980s.

To provide more ease in donning gloves, the food-grade cornstarch powder absorbs moisture on hands. This is a key benefit for individuals whose palms are prone to sweating. Additionally, the powder absorbs excess moisture that is present after wearers wash their hands, a step that should be undertaken before gloves are donned.

Powdered gloves are not suitable for all applications, as the cornstarch powder interferes with certain biological and chemical processes, such as chemical sealing and wound closure, respectively. Additionally, the powder damages paints, varnishes and lacquers, and if even a speck of powder lands on a freshly painted surface, it may cause a fish eye. However, outside of these applications, powdered gloves are found in many industries.

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Know Your Glove Materials: Part IV Poly


Polyethylene is the most affordable glove material and is used in the food service industry. Food service workers need a glove with enough durability for short-duration tasks, and poly gloves are the right choice.

What is polyethylene?
Like polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene was first created by accident. German chemist Hans von Pechmann made the first polyethylene in 1898. In 1933, Reginald Gibson and Eric Fawcett, two scientists at Imperial Chemical Industries, also accidentally created polyethylene, and their employer would be the driving force behind the material’s innovation in early years.

Polyethylene is a polymer that is synthesized from ethylene and a thermoplastic that is formed into various shapes as it cools from a liquid state to a solid state.

There are different forms of polyethylene, with one being high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which is the harder form of the plastic. Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) is thinner, less opaque than HDPE and used to make plastic grocery bags, dispensing bottles and disposable gloves. It is a flexible and tough material though not as durable as other glove materials.

LDPE is a non-leaching plastic in its natural state. This means it will not release unwanted chemicals into food, which is why poly gloves are suitable for the food service industry. Additionally, LDPE is used for creating protective film for food packaging.

Two polyethylene sheets are seamed and sealed with heat to create disposable gloves. Because poly gloves are not dipped like latex, nitrile and vinyl gloves, they are not impervious to liquids. Vinyl gloves are a suitable alternative for food services tasks where liquids are present.

“Poly gloves are made from low-density polyethylene.”

What are the benefits of poly gloves?
The food service industry requires workers to change their gloves often. In a sandwich deli, for instance, an employee would make one customer’s order. Afterward, he or she should follow proper handwashing guidelines and don a new pair of gloves for the next customer. Given the frequency of these changes, the industry requires a cost-effective glove material, which is why poly gloves are the preferred choice.

Poly gloves are also powder and latex free. Both traits are beneficial for preventing allergic reactions among workers and customers. Given that the gloves directly touch food that is ingested, the latex and corn proteins that cause the reaction could easily enter a customer’s body, possibly leading to a more severe reaction. Poly gloves are a safe alternative.

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Best Practices for Donning a Glove


When individuals put on a glove, they may not give any thought to how they go about this process, but there are specific steps wearers must take to ensure their gloves fit properly.

The key concern is creating a barrier between wearers’ skin and contaminants, pathogens or other hazardous materials. Nurses, for instance, need a barrier between themselves and patients’ blood, skin and contaminated surfaces. In the food service industry, gloves aid in keeping microscopic organisms from passing from staff hands to food stuffs and guard those same employees against health risks that come with handling uncooked meat, such as salmonella or other microbial foodborne illnesses.

However, if gloves are improperly donned, their ability to protect the users can be compromised. For this reason, wearers must take the appropriate steps when putting on gloves.

Here are the essential steps:

Finding the right size
Before gloves can be donned, the appropriate size must be found. Improperly sized gloves are more prone to tears, which can compromise the user’s safety. This applies to gloves that are too large or too small. A glove that is too tight can is more prone to punctures and tears and can reduce hand flexibility. A loose fit can lead to wrinkles, which can cause grip issues.

Users can determine if their gloves are too small by extending their fingers until straight. If the glove material appears to be stretching, the gloves are too small. Tears that occur where the thumb meets the palm also may indicate a glove is too small.

Putting gloves on
Once the proper size gloves are selected, wearers can put them on. The first step is to have a clean work area when donning gloves. Users don’t want to contaminate the gloves by placing them on a dirty surface. In an laboratory, for example, gloves should not be placed on a surface that has come into contact with harmful chemicals, as doing so can ultimately bring the wearer’s skin into contact with those chemicals.

In that same vein, all hand and wrist jewelry should be removed, and hands should be washed before gloves are worn. Dirty hands can contaminate the inside of the glove. This is because the hazardous materials and pathogens can be transferred from the unclean hands to the clean interior of the glove. In addition to protecting the wearer, this step can guard others who are going to come in contact with the wearer. Medical staff touch patients, so they don’t want pathogens or chemicals on their hands to contaminate the gloves.

Once work surfaces and hands are clean, users can begin to don the gloves. One key point is wearers should avoid touching the outside of the gloves as much as possible. First, the gloves can be placed on the prepared work surface. Then, the user puts a glove on his or her dominant hand by grabbing it with the other hand – remembering to only touch the inside of the glove – and slipping it over the dominant hand until it reaches finger level. Next, the wearer uses the gloved dominant hand to slip the other glove onto to the non-dominant hand.

Once both gloves are on, the users can touch the outside of the gloves to ensure a proper fit.

“Donning gloves properly is a quick best practice to implement.”

Addressing challenges of donning gloves
In some cases, users may find themselves unable to easily put their gloves on their hands. One key issue that can arise is the presence of moisture. If users do not have dry hands, they can experience difficulties donning their gloves.

One example comes from the automotive industry. If technicians are working in an auto shop on a particularly warm day, sweat may accumulate on their palms, and they may have trouble putting on gloves.

Powdered gloves may be the solution. Gloves that are powdered, with food grade corn starch, are designed to make it easier for users to don and doff. Users are cautioned to determine whether powdered gloves are appropriate for their application because the powder particles can decrease the integrity of certain automotive seals and contaminate some paints and finishes.

A powder-free alternative would be polymer-coated gloves which eliminates the need for powder and reduces surface tackiness.


These are the proper steps for doffing a glove.

Taking gloves off
There are also specific steps for removing gloves. In this case, users should never touch their skin with the outside of the glove to avoid contamination.

Using the dominant hand, users start by grabbing the outside of the glove on the non-dominant hand on the palm side near the cuff. Then, pull the glove off the non-dominant hand and place it in the gloved hand, balling it up. Next, slip two fingers under the cuff of the other glove and carefully peel it off the hand without touching the wrist, turning the remaining glove inside out as it is removed and in turn encasing the first glove. The gloves can then be disposed.

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