Not without Gloves: Salon Chemicals

Helping clients look their best may come at a price for salon workers because they are often exposed to hazardous chemicals. Hair and nail salon workers handle potentially toxic chemicals on a daily basis, and they need to know how to protect themselves. Employees must be aware of the risks and don the right personal protective equipment based on the chemicals they handle. Here are some common salon chemicals and barrier protection for each:

Acetone
A common ingredient in both nail polish remover and hairspray, acetone may cause skin irritation. In some cases, there may not be sufficient alternatives to allow salon workers to completely avoid exposure to this chemical. However, latex gloves offer superior barrier protection so employees minimize skin exposure. Vinyl is not resistant to acetone, so latex is the best choice for handling acetone. However, depending on the length of exposure to chemicals, nitrile may be a better choice to avoid exposure to latex.

Formaldehyde
Formaldehyde, which is often found in nail polish and nail hardeners, is one of the riskiest chemicals for salon workers to handle because it may cause cancer after long-term exposure. From short-term exposure, formaldehyde causes skin irritation and dermatitis. Even low concentrations of formaldehyde may lead to negative side effects. The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) recommended respirators for handling formaldehyde. Many salons are well-ventilated, but N95-rated masks filter out dust and germs. Gloves should also be used to protect the skin. Latex, vinyl and nitrile gloves offer protection from this chemical for concentrations up to 99 percent.

Trichloroethylene
Often used in hair extension glue and lace wig glue, trichloroethylene may cause eye and skin irritation, as well as nausea and disorientation. Long-term exposure may lead to dermatitis and liver and kidney damage. Nitrile gloves provide protection against this chemical. In addition, vinyl gloves may be used for a limited time to guard against trichloroethylene exposure.

Dibutyl phthalate
Dibutyl phthalate is found in nail polish and may cause skin irritation. Within the selection of glove materials, nitrile gloves protect workers from dibutyl phthalate whereas latex gloves may be used for a limited time to protect from this chemical.

Toulene
Used in many different industries and common in a number of beauty products, including nail polish, nail glue, hair dye and hairpiece bonding, toulene is one of the most toxic chemicals in salons. It has been linked to skin rashes, nausea, eye irritation and headaches. If workers are exposed to this chemical for an extended length of time, it may lead to birth defects or the loss of a pregnancy. Because this chemical is so toxic, vinyl gloves may be used, but for only a limited time.

Because concentrations may vary, it is important to check the safety data sheet issued by the manufacturer and conduct in-house testing to determine the safe exposure time. Gloves should always be replaced if they are torn or compromised in any way. Although nitrile gloves offer barrier protection against many common salon chemicals, it is crucial to understand the recommendations for each solution. Concentrations may vary by manufacturer, and salons need to ensure they select the right gloves for the application. In addition to chemicals, salon workers need gloves to protect them from customers’ nails, blood or skin.

To learn more about what glove is best for the chemicals you may be using contact an AMMEX representative today or contact us on our website to get started on becoming a distributor. If you are already a distributor, speak with your salesperson to discover more about what AMMEX can offer for you.

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Not without Gloves: Lacquer and Paint Thinners


Lacquer and paint thinners are harsh solvents that should not be handled without the correct personal protective equipment (PPE). This is because these substances, which are used in the construction, automotive, retail and maritime industries, present several health risks when they are not handled safely.

If certain workers use paint and lacquer thinners without gloves, they may experience dermatitis, skin irritation and numbness in the areas that come in in contact with the solvents. With repeated exposure to the chemicals, the side effects become more severe, ranging from liver disease to an increased risk of cancer, as indicated by material safety data sheets (MSDSs) for these solvents.

With these hazards in mind, always consider the following PPE for safe handling of paint and lacquer thinners:

The importance of disposable gloves
Disposable gloves protect workers’ hands while they use paint and lacquer thinners.

Nitrile gloves are perfect for handling these substances because they stand up to the specific chemicals that are typically found in these solvents. This is because they are made from a petroleum-based synthetic material that is designed to provide chemical resistance. According to an MSDS from GC Electronics, its paint thinner contains a mixture of toluene and hydrotreated naphtha – about 40-50 percent of each. Based on these chemicals, the data sheet recommended nitrile gloves for use because the material is resistant to this mixture.

Lacquer thinner, which has a higher solvency than paint thinner and is therefore a harsher substance, often contains chemicals such as methanol and hexane. Nitrile also provides sufficient resistance to these and other ingredients commonly found in lacquer thinners.

Workers should keep in mind the permeation times for each chemical in these solvents in relation to nitrile. For instance, the naphtha in a mixture will not wear down a nitrile glove quickly, but the permeation time could decrease if the solvent contains methyl ethyl ketone, which is not recommended for use with nitrile gloves. This chemical clearly degrades the glove material. Latex gloves are a better option for handling thinners with methyl ethyl ketone but for only a limited duration per glove pair.

Face masks
Paint and lacquer thinners can be used with spray applicators. Also, they are often present in lacquers and paint to thin those coatings for use with a spray applicator. To reduce the inhalation risk, workers should don N-95-rated face masks. These products will prevent individuals from directly inhaling the solvents during the spraying process. It is important to note face masks address the risk of particles from the spray solutions entering the nose and mouth but do not filter vapors. Depending on the compounds being sprayed, a respirator mask is appropriate for more dangerous chemical use.

The importance of on-site testing and glove changes
When selecting PPE for handling any chemical, it is important to conduct on-site testing. This is particularly true of paint and lacquer thinners, as chemical mixtures for these substances vary by manufacturer. Testing allows workers to have a more accurate picture of permeation times and degradation, which provides a better idea of how often workers must change gloves and which material works best based on the task.

The chemical being sprayed will set the tone for the best glove choice. The GlovePlus HD Heavy Duty Nitrile Exam Gloves are the most commonly used gloves for lacquer and paint thinners.

Stay tuned for the next installment in our series, which will cover the best PPE for salons.

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Global Trends in Food Processing


Food processing facilities follow the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) rules, but these food safety guidelines are the bare minimum facilities undertake to prevent contamination. In addition to HACCP, these facilities follow rules regarding high- and low-care (or high- and low-risk) areas.

High- and low-care areas establish physical barriers against contamination and relate to anything that creates a process, such as washing, salting and cooking. This not only applies to personal protective equipment (PPE), but also the facility itself. The regulations designate clear start and end points for different parts of the processing supply chain to prevent microbial growth and other types of contamination.

Here is an overview of how high- and low-care areas work:

What are high- and low-care areas?
When employing these guidelines, each facility has its own standards. However, one factor remains constant: As food products move further up the supply chain, the control standards become more strict. Essentially, as food goes from farm to table, it will move from low- to high-care areas.

“As food goes from farm to table, it will move from low- to high-care areas.”

As implied by the name, low-care areas require a lower standard of hygiene than high-care segments of a facility. Although food products in these areas may have contact with the environment, they are not at risk for additional contamination, according to Food Safety Magazine. Food processing steps to be completed in low-care areas include receiving, preparing and cooking food.

High-care areas have the utmost hygiene standards. Furthermore, these sections of the facility are temperature-controlled.

Before entering either of these areas, workers must change into the appropriate PPE at designated changing stations and wash their hands throughout the process. In the case of equipment moving between areas, these tools must undergo sanitation procedures.

How do facilities delineate high- and low-care areas?
Several factors establish the barriers between different sections of a food processing facility. These include installations and PPE, according to the British Retail Consortium’s Global Standards.

For the physical structure, a few features are present in both areas but more extensive in high-care sections: entrances; filtration systems to remove dust, microorganisms and airborne particles; and color coded floor markings. Color coding also applies to PPE, tools used for processing and appliances.

The physical segregation also includes transfer points. These are places in the facilities between low- and high-care areas where employees must complete certain steps to prevent contamination. Before workers or equipment pass from one area to the other, they must undergo the aforementioned hygiene and sanitation procedures in the transfer point. In some factories, employees cannot move between low- and high-care areas under any circumstances.

“As part of the segregation measures for low- and high-care areas, employees must wash their hands before moving from one area to the other.”

How do facilities establish a flow to prevent contamination?
Food processing plants have certain guidelines and layouts to further ensure activities in low-care areas do not affect high-care sections.

Drainage is one key concern. Any drainage systems in the facility must flow from a high-care area to a low-care area. This ensures no contaminates, such as blood from livestock, flow into a high-care section and come into contact with cooked foods.

Another aspect of flow is the cooking process. Because foods are raw when they begin cooking in a low-care area, BRC’s standards require double doors on cooking ovens for thorough segregation of cooked and uncooked food products. While some facilities use single-door ovens, they put additional sanitation measures in place to prevent contamination in lieu of a second physical barrier.

What is the global perspective?
More foods are processed now compared to previous years, which raises the chances that part of the supply chain takes place in another country. Not only does this refer to steps in the process, but it also applies to where the ingredients come from.

Different countries have varying degrees of regulation for food processing, and the U.S. has less intense rules compared to Europe and Asia. For instance, the European Union enforces good hygiene practices (GHP), which include extensive training to make certain food processing employees prevent contamination, in addition to HACCP. As shown through regulations regarding low- and high-care areas, HACCP, GHP and other food safety guidelines, increased scrutiny and care of food processing and food safety are growing globally.

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High Visibility Sales Results with Orange Nitrile!


The first thing you will most likely notice about Gloveworks Heavy Duty Orange Nitrile Gloves is their bright, unique color. Although AMMEX Corporation is well-known for black nitrile gloves, orange nitrile gloves bring something new to the table and are perfect for agricultural, automotive, industrial safety and manufacturing applications, among many others.

Why should you go orange?
Orange nitrile gloves do not just look unique; the color stands out so you are more aware of where you hands are at all times, making them an excellent part of a personal protective equipment (PPE) or high-visibility program. The contrast of the color with dark environments makes workers less likely to be injured. The bright orange stands out against dim work areas, such as industrial environments, garages and under the hoods of vehicles.

Successful PPE programs require collaboration between employers and employees to conduct hazard assessments in their workplaces and minimize risks. Employees must be trained to be aware of hazards and properly wear PPE. Protective gear that is comfortable and easy to don makes employees more likely to utilize it. The orange nitrile gloves have a beaded cuff to prevent ripping and tearing at the base, which makes them easier to put on. In addition, the texture and durability of these gloves do not interfere with the comfort. Nitrile gloves conform to the hands as they are warmed with body heat and are more elastic than vinyl, making them more comfortable for longer use.

“Orange nitrile gloves stand out in dark work environments.”

Other features that will make you want to go orange
The raised diamond texture of the orange nitrile gloves gives them a superior grip. In addition, they are thicker for better durability, which makes them three times as resistant to punctures as latex. Plus, the added thickness increases the gloves’ resistance to harsh chemicals. Wearers are able to safely work with iodine, butane and pesticides for longer without having to change gloves. This helps you save money by using fewer gloves. The bright color also means no more lost gloves in the dark. In addition, the orange matches other brightly colored protective equipment.

Our Gloveworks Heavy Duty Orange Nitrile Gloves are available in sizes medium to extra extra large and measure 9.5 inches from base to fingertip. They are sold in boxes of 100 gloves with 10 boxes to a case.

Contact your AMMEX representative or contact us on our website to add these gloves to your product line. If you would like to become a distributor, contact us for more information.

AMMEXHigh Visibility Sales Results with Orange Nitrile!
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Accelerate your Disposable Glove Sales with AMMEX


You may be a superstar at selling disposable gloves but what should you do to boost your sales even further? If you know anything about heroes, whether caped crusaders or your local firefighters, you know they never have to work alone when fighting the good fight.

Teamwork wins, which is why you should take advantage of the unique sales support services offered by AMMEX’s Sales Acceleration Solution®. When you partner with AMMEX you get much more than a supplier, you get a wide array of marketing and sales help to skyrocket your profits and reach a broader client base.

If you are not convinced yet, our new infographic highlights all the advantages of teaming up with AMMEX:

 

AMMEX-Team-up-to-grow-your-glove-sales

Become a glove expert 

At AMMEX, we pride ourselves on our extensive knowledge of disposable gloves. Not only do we consider ourselves experts, but we expect the same of our clients. Whether it’s learning how latex gloves are made or the benefits of nitrile gloves, we have you covered with product and training videos to make you a glove expert in no time!

“We have product and training videos to make you a glove expert in no time!”

These tools also help with your sales in addition to your growing glove knowledge, as they are useful for passing information onto your customers. Customers who view these types of videos are 144 percent more likely to buy your gloves.

Reel in customers with a hands-on experience

Everyone likes to try before they buy, whether it’s samples at the grocery store or trial periods for software. For this reason, we provide the glove samples you need to give your customers the tactile experience of shopping for the right disposable gloves.

Your customers will be able to examine the materials, sizing, fit and other features to get the perfect gloves the first time they buy – lessening the frequency of returns. If you think this sounds too good to be true, consider that free samples helped a large chain store boost its cheese and pizza sales by 100 percent and 600 percent, respectively.

Put your name out there

When you join AMMEX’s league of glove-selling superheroes, you get to take center stage in your market. We have a number of promotional tools to improve your market visibility.

Here are the tools available to you:

  • Search engine spotlight: Search engine optimization is key for any business, as 89 percent of consumers base their spending decisions on search engine results. We have a number of high-quality images and other information crafted to jumpstart your online visibility.
  • Social media supercharge: Did you know 67 percent of Twitter users and 51 percent of Facebook users are more likely to buy your gloves simply because they follow you? To increase your number of subscribers, we produce a plethora of eye-catching and rebloggable posts and articles.
  • Brand booster: A business’s identity is as important as its prices, which is why we help you build your brand. When it comes to disposable gloves, AMMEX is a trusted brand, so why not share in that positive image by teaming up with us?

Tackle the challenges of today’s sales environment

The nature of sales is always evolving, and we at AMMEX understand what it takes to keep our clients up to date on the latest trends related to and strategies for selling gloves. We don’t just give you gloves to sell – we help you sell more.

Contact an AMMEX representative today or contact us on our website to get started on becoming a distributor. If you are already a distributor, speak with your salesperson to discover more about teaming up with AMMEX and the advantages of our Sales Acceleration Solution®.

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AMMEX: From Start-Up to Industry Leader


Where a company goes all depends on where it starts, and we at AMMEX come from one man’s goal to provide comprehensive barrier protection to the world. Expanding from a small office to a headquarters in Kent, Washington, production facilities in Asia and distribution centers in Toronto and Atlanta, AMMEX is one of the fastest-growing glove suppliers.

How it all began
Like many businesses that started out small, AMMEX had inauspicious beginnings. Fred Crosetto, a 24-year-old law student from Seattle, started the company in March 1988. While Crosetto had a clear goal in mind, which was to address a growing demand for industrial barrier protection and infection control products, he did not understand what it would truly take to build an international company between the U.S. and Asia.

Rapidly expanding into a leading glove supplier
The spring of 1990 began a string of firsts for AMMEX.

Crosetto opened the retail business in May 1990, sold 50 cases during the first month and did all this by making deliveries with a borrowed van. He also ferried gloves in a 1989 Nissan Sentra, 17 cases at a time.

AMMEX’s first office/warehouse opened in early 1992, and in early 1993, AMMEX received the delivery of our first full ocean container

Where AMMEX lives today
In July 1994, AMMEX acquired Sime Health, a 12,000-square-foot facility located in Seattle. Not only did business double overnight, but this first acquisition lead to what would become our first headquarters in Kent.

While our headquarters is in Kent, AMMEX now has an international presence. With Crosetto leading the way with an attitude of “it can be the right time and the right place, but you still have to do something about it,” AMMEX opened warehouses in Atlanta in 1996 and another in Toronto in 2009. AMMEX continued to grow internationally when we opened our Shanghai operations, which included Shanghai Intco Medical Supply, in January 2005. We also have our AMMEX Weida Health and Safety Supply business Xiantao, Hubei, China.

“AMMEX has grown from a small operation to an international business.”

AMMEX is now a leading distributor in health, hygiene and safety supplies in the China market. Further expansion has included production, procurement and other facilities across Malaysia and the Philippines. One of AMMEX’s strengths is a deep and extensive network of suppliers across China and Southeast Asia. These relationships have and will continue to play a key role as the global growth of this market is only increasing.

AMMEX has grown significantly since our small office in Bellevue, Washington. We have been listed on Washington’s 100 Fastest Growing Private Companies an astounding eight times; are one of the largest privately held companies in the state of Washington; and have been voted one of Seattle Business magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work for. However, we have not forgotten our founder’s initial mission. In these past 27 years, we expanded our product lines and international presence and are proud suppliers of a wide selection of disposable gloves and personal protection equipment to thousand of distributors in a variety of industries around the world.

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Beyond Medical Exam Gloves


Did you know workers in the medical and dental industries use an average of 15 pairs of disposable gloves each day which is 3,960 pairs each year? While this number may appear high, it is not that different – or even the highest usage – compared to glove usage in other industries.

When people think of disposable gloves, they often picture doctors or nurses snapping latex gloves on their hands. However, the medical and dental industries are far from the only places where gloves are used.

Let’s consider the glove revenue for these combined industries, which was nearly $5 billion in 2012. While this is an impressive figure, it is a little more than half the glove revenue for the industrial safety industry. If this is not enough of an indication of how medical and dental glove usage is just a small part of the total market, consider that the revenue share for this sector was approximately 27 percent of the total in 2012.

This is all not to say there are not still opportunities for glove use in exam settings – all applications are projected to see significant growth. Yet, the data does indicate there are a wealth of opportunities to get workers in various industries the gloves they need to get the job done.

AMMEX-Disposable-Gloves-Market-Growth

 

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The Right Gloves for the Job: Part I Automotive


Workers in the automotive industry tend to be seen as hardworking technicians who are covered in oil and grease. In many cases, these substances can present a safety hazard, be hard to wash off skin or even stain light-colored interior.  Here is The Right Gloves for the Job: Part I Automotive –

Transmission fluids, such as brake fluid, for instance, are among the dangerous fluids found in cars. When the fluids are changed or simply filled, there is a chance they could spill on a technician’s hands. After prolonged contact, these fluids can absorb through the skin. The resulting health risks can include nerve damage, weakness in the affected areas and even paralysis. In addition, if the fluids come in contact with workers’ eyes, such as by rubbing their contaminated hands on their faces, eye irritation and redness can occur.

Many automotive mechanics are now protecting their hands by wearing gloves. This provides a barrier between their hands and the many fluids and greases they come in contact with while working on vehicles. While the benefits of wearing gloves in the automotive industry are clear, there is some debate regarding which glove material is best, especially when choosing between latex and nitrile.

The more well-known glove
When it comes to thinking about protective gloves, many people probably think of latex. These gloves are moderately puncture resistant, tear resistant and conform well to the hand. Of course, when working with the rough and at times sharp surfaces that are present under the hood of a car, mechanics want a glove that will not easily tear. However, the lower puncture resistance of latex may mean the gloves can be punctured. Although a hole may be small, prolonged exposure to harmful chemicals and solvents can occur.

There are both powdered and powder-free versions of latex automotive gloves. Powdered latex gloves are easier to don when hands are wet, as the powder can absorb sweat and other moisture. However, powdered latex gloves can present an issue because powder particles can escape into the air and contaminate vehicle finishes, paints, varnishes and sealants. In the automotive industry, this fact has presented issues when windshields are installed. If the powder weakens the seal around the glass, leaks can occur.

This glove material was part of the reason disposable gloves did not make much of an impact on the automotive industry right away. When some latex gloves came in contact with oil, grease and gasoline, they didn’t stand up to the substances, which left many workers looking for a more durable product.

A more durable, latex-free glove
Nitrile is a type of synthetic polymer that does not contain latex. For this reason alone, nitrile gloves are a suitable option for many auto mechanics, as wearers do not have to worry about latex allergies, which can lead to various symptoms that can inhibit a technician’s work. These include hives, itching, skin redness and rashes.

Nitrile is created by combining three monomers: acrylonitrile, carboxylic acid and butadiene. These gloves do a better job of standing up to the many chemicals and solvents – particularly grease, oil and gasoline – auto mechanics come in contact with on a daily basis. This means workers can go through fewer gloves and lower their chance of exposure to hazardous fluids. The resistance is the result of the acrylonitrile.

“Nitrile gloves have excellent tear resistance, which is provided by the carboxylic acid.”

They are also three to five times puncture resistant than latex, a key benefit for auto mechanics who regularly work with sharp objects.  The butadiene is responsible for nitrile gloves’ flexibility. As such, wearers may feel their hands can move freely while wearing these gloves, which can be advantageous if they are trying to reach into a tight space. However, nitrile does not have the elasticity of latex, but will conform to the hand as the glove is warmed by body heat.

Which glove is used more often?
Although latex gloves have some uses in the automotive industry, many mechanics opt for nitrile gloves. Nitrile’s chemical resistance provides a key safety benefit, but that doesn’t mean latex gloves do not have their place in automotive applications, particularly if they are heavy duty, which means they are made to stand up to more intense use.

Coming up next, we’ll explore gloves used in the food service industry.

AMMEXThe Right Gloves for the Job: Part I Automotive
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