For many applications in the workplace we wear disposable gloves, to the extent that for many people they have become an everyday feature of working life.
Disposable gloves come in all sorts of colours, while the different materials they are made of also seem to be growing. For a product that shares such a high level of intimacy with our working life, it may come as a surprise that few of us take the time to understand their purpose. This article will therefore review glove barrier properties in the workplace and why gloves really are our first line of defence.
In terms of purpose, disposable gloves are often expected to provide personal protection against chemical splashes and biohazards, plus provide protection to the process from human-borne contamination. To assess these different needs, we will first look at glove materials, then discuss in greater detail how disposable gloves satisfy the need for chemical splash and biohazard protection.