Polyurethane- vs. Latex- vs. Nitrile-Dipped Gloves

Polyurethane- vs. Latex- vs. Nitrile-Dipped Gloves

Protective gloves have existed for thousands of years. Since the first pair of leather gloves, protective gloves have kept workers safe and able to perform the most strenuous jobs.

However, the existence of dipped gloves is relatively new, and they have become a game-changer for the personal protective equipment industry. Polyurethane- vs. latex- vs. nitrile-dipped gloves vary, so let’s look at how they differ and the industries that benefit from them.

Polyurethane-Dipped Gloves

Polyurethane-dipped gloves make for an excellent-value work glove. Because of their low particulate shed, they offer good breathability, touch sensitivity, and dexterity. Their grip is reliable without feeling sticky. They also have reliable abrasion resistance and good tensile strength.

Although polyurethane-dipped gloves shouldn’t be in environments above 175 degrees Fahrenheit (79 degrees Celsius), they’re ideal for small part handling jobs. For example, you may use them for electronics, glass, or sheet metal handling. They also work well for aeronautics tasks and cleaning rooms.

Latex-Dipped Gloves

Often thought of as “rubber gloves” due to their water and alcohol resistance, latex gloves offer increased elasticity and flexibility in extreme temperatures, between 0 to 300 degrees Fahrenheit (-18 to 149 degrees Celsius). Additionally, they offer cut, tear, and abrasion resistance, making them an excellent fit for wet and dry environments.

When using latex-dipped gloves, you should avoid working around flames and hydrocarbon and organic solvents. Also, be aware that some people have latex allergies. But for the most part, latex-dipped gloves work well for construction, warehousing, general material handling, and glass manufacturing.

Nitrile-Dipped Gloves

Nitrile-dipped gloves are an excellent alternative to latex gloves because they effectively absorb oil and provide a reliable grip. While nitrile micro-foam gloves offer three times more puncture resistance than rubber, they aren’t as generally durable. But they do also offer water repellence and breathability.

Nitrile palm-coated work gloves work well in construction, oily areas, agriculture, automotive or aircraft maintenance, sanitation, and glass or sheet metal handling. Ensure that you avoid working with adhesives.

Dipped Glove Safety Standards

The American National Safety Institute (ANSI) creates safety standards for testing work glove products in the US. Industry experts, government bodies, and consumer groups run it to help classify safety equipment, including work gloves.

Standard glove safety testing evaluates cut resistance, puncture resistance, back-of-hand impact protection, and abrasion resistance to measure the level of protection. While polyurethane-, latex-, and nitrile-dipped gloves differ, the testing helps with customer reliability and company liability. So you should choose the gloves best suited to your field to have confidence in your safety.


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