Whether a glove’s interior is powdered or powder-free will make a difference in its finish. In the latter case, gloves can be made easier to put on and take off using several production techniques.
People who prefer powdered gloves prefer the feel of food-grade cornstarch-coated gloves, making changing gloves easier even when they are wet. Cornstarch coating makes gloves easier to remove even when wet. In the past, glove formers were powdered to make it easier to remove the gloves. Because the gloves were already coated in powder, those that were not coated required an extra step. Currently, gloves are powdered after they are made.
Due to concerns that the cornstarch might impair wound healing and spread latex allergies, the Food & Drug Administration banned powdered latex exam gloves from sale in the United States in January 2017.
Gloves without powder are generally preferred for industrial work since powder can interfere with surfaces such as paint, seals, varnishes, or adhesives. During the manufacturing process, gloves without powder have three different finishes:
Putting a polymer coating on the inside of gloves -silicones, acrylics, or hydrogels – gives them a sleeker finish and reduces surface friction so that they can be taken on and off more easily. Nitrile gloves are most commonly used.
When gloves are chlorinated, they are washed in a solution or with chlorine gas, making them softer and more comfortable, and it also makes them easier to put on and take off. After they are completely rinsed, they are dried. The chlorination of latex gloves also reduces the number of residual proteins.
Due to the nature of latex, which is tackier by nature, some gloves are double chlorinated to facilitate donning and doffing. Polyurethane is often used on the inside to reduce surface tackiness to make vinyl gloves easier to put on and remove.
Disposable gloves are finding new applications in industries like automotive repair, food service, and janitorial/sanitation. Besides medical and dental offices, exam gloves are also used in numerous other professions that require direct contact with the public.
Among the fastest-growing segments for disposable gloves is the industrial market, where raised diamond textures and thicker gloves are key advancements. Although latex continues to be the go-to glove material for some applications, Nitrile now dominates the market, and its dominance will only grow as further technological advances bring it closer to latex in fit, feel, and elasticity. The versatility and economy of vinyl will make it an attractive alternative.
Due to the growing awareness of worker safety globally – including Asian and African markets, which are still relatively new to safety equipment – the disposable glove business will continue to experience excellent growth.