Protective gloves should be worn when handling hazardous, corrosive or irritating materials, rough or sharp-edged objects, and very hot or cold materials. When handling chemicals in a laboratory, disposable latex, vinyl or nitrile gloves are usually appropriate. These gloves will offer protection from incidental splashes or contact. Cloth gloves should be worn when handling rough or sharp-edged objects or very hot or cold materials. Before each use, gloves should be inspected for discoloration, punctures, and tears.
| Glove Type
| Plastic, disposable (Polyethylene)
|| Body fluids and small amounts of aqueous solutions.
|| Loose-fitting. Latex and power free.
| Latex (Natural Rubber)
|| Dilute acids, bases and irritating solutions. Not suitable for organic solvents.
||Conforms to the hand and allows good finger dexterity. Be careful for latex sensitivities.
| Neoprene (Synthetic Rubber)
|| Good for acids, bases, and most organic solvents.
|| More puncture resistant but may not provide good finger dexterity.
||Best protection for acids, bases, and organic solvents. Great puncture resistance.
|| Best all around glove for chemistry and biology labs.
| Vinyl (PVC)
|| Suitable for washing dishes and reasonable protection against corrosive materials. Not commonly found in laboratories.
||Not suitable for organic solvents.
| Cloth, cotton
|| Suitable for handling hot or cold items but they are not fire-proof.
|| Loose-fitting and only provides brief protection. Difficult to clean.
|| Great for handling hot or cold items and are fire-resistant.
|| Best choice for handling hot materials in the lab. Hot vessel hand gripping devices are commonly made from silicone.