Powdered or powder-free gloves?

Powdered or powder-free gloves?

There are several types of protective gloves on the market, which makes it difficult for many people to choose them.

Find out which gloves will be a better choice - powdered or powder-free.

Disposable gloves are a basic piece of equipment for many professions and everyday activities. Their basic task is to prevent the transmission of pathogenic microorganisms and bacteria from humans to the product (e.g. in the catering industry) or onto another person (e.g. in medicine).

Powdered or powder-free gloves?

Disposable gloves - powdered or powder-free?

Disposable powdered gloves are covered with talcum powder or cornstarch on the inside. This solution prevents the accumulation of moisture inside the glove and excessive friction. Powder-free gloves guarantee direct contact between the rubber and the wearer’s skin. The use of powdered gloves is not recommended in the food industry.

Powdered or powder-free gloves - advantages and disadvantages of both solutions

Powdered gloves are a bit easier to put on because talcum powder makes it easier to slide the gum over your hands. It is also convenient to take them off, so they can be the right choice when gloves need to be taken off several times a day. They are recommended for people who struggle with increased sweating of the skin around the hands. They also perform well in demanding, warm and humid conditions.

It happens, however, that their long-term use leads to skin irritation, redness, allergic eruptions or itching. Powder-free gloves do not cause allergies in people who are prone to them, because they do not contain any additional agents inside. When put on the hands, they fit very well and guarantee high accuracy of movements.

FDA restrictions on the use of powdered gloves

In 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration decided to recall most of the powdered gloves used in healthcare by doctors and nurses from the market. She justified this by the risk of both patients and doctors. The following are the potentially possible complications resulting from the use of powdered gloves:

inflammation of the respiratory system,
development of immediate or delayed allergic reactions on the skin,
difficulty healing wounds.

In order for medical gloves to meet all applicable safety standards, they must be properly marked and tested. When choosing them, it is worth paying attention to their size and the level of protection against pathogens or acids.

The use of powdered gloves is also not recommended in the catering industry. It is a sector in which the HACCP system of control and supervision over the production and processing of food is in force. One way to comply with this system is by the use of appropriate protective clothing, headgear, masks and disposable gloves by food processing personnel. Protective gloves should be blue in color, which creates an appropriate contrast between them and food products. Thanks to this, you can quickly and easily find and eliminate any possible fragments of gloves that could get into food as a result of their mechanical damage.

Types of powder-free disposable gloves

There are powder-free gloves:

nitrile – most often they are odorless, so they do not transfer the rubber aroma to the hands, which is important especially for people who are extremely sensitive to smells. They are not allergenic, but they are a bit less flexible than latex gloves, so for the greatest comfort of their users, it is worth trying different sizes. They provide very good sensitivity to touched objects.
latex – is an excellent choice for all people who are not allergic to latex, and appreciate the great quality of gloves at a good price. They are very flexible, fit easily in the hand and are comfortable to wear. They guarantee a good level of protection against chemical agents.
vinyl – they are good for cleaning, washing dishes and doing other housework that can irritate the delicate skin of your hands. Due to a slightly looser cut and less flexibility, they are not recommended for work requiring very high precision of movements. They will be liked by people who do not like the feeling of the glove sticking to the hand too much. They are a relatively cheap alternative compared to other solutions.

Each of the mentioned types of powder-free disposable gloves has its advantages and disadvantages. Choosing them for each other is an individual matter, because a lot depends on the purpose for which we wear gloves and what activities we intend to perform in them. A large selection of certified protective gloves (including those intended for contact with food) can be found in the Global Food Hygiene offer – click to find out more.