With the development of safety regulations regarding COVID-19 and PPE, it is becoming more common to see people wearing disposable gloves. When it comes to business, however, there are many guides to go by. As such, the services you provide or products you sell may have an impact on whether or not you and your staff need to wear nitrile, latex or vinyl gloves.
As taken from the ECDC (European Centenaries for Disease Prevention and Control):
Beauticians, tattoo parlours, nail bars, hairdressers and other close proximity services may have differing regulations. If you cook, serve or handle food, washing your hands, using sanitiser and cleaning surfaces remains the most successful method.
Always check the guidance from your industry’s regulation body if you are unsure.
There are currently a large number of gloves available to you, however the most common are standard latex gloves (usually worn in medical settings) or nitrile gloves (sometimes used in medical settings, but also in garages, or mechanics settings). As mentioned above, your use of gloves in the workplace will vary depending on the services you provide, products you handle or the types of clients you see.
The table below gives and simple view of the standard types and their benefits. It should be noted that when companies use the term “Non-Latex”, they are usually referring to Nitrile or Vinyl gloves as these do not contain latex, and can be work by those with allergies.
Powder-free gloves are often more expensive due to the process of removing the powder. However, they are ideal for reducing allergic reactions and have lower protein and chemical content. They also leave less residue. Should you decide on using powder-free gloves, you will also need to decide if you want them chlorinated or non-chlorinated. Chlorinated means manufacturers treat them with chlorine to make them easier to put on. They also have a shorter shelf life – meaning they break down faster, leaving less waste. Non-Chlorinated gloves are treated with gel instead. However, they are not as easy to put on and are closer in colour to standard medical gloves.
Powdered gloves usually use a cornstarch lubricant, which makes them much easier to put on. Cornstarch coatings replace other powdering options such as lycopodium powder and talc because these other coating types can sometimes irritate tissue. Nevertheless, cornstarch can still impede healing when coming into contact with tissues. Powder-free gloves are therefore often better for surgeries and other sensitive procedures.