pink nitrile glove

Many people don’t know if they can wash or reuse nitrile gloves and which disposable glove is the best between nitrile and latex. In this article, we’ll focus more on understanding nitrile gloves and how useful they are. To find out what they are and what nitrile gloves can be used for, keep reading this article.

What are nitrile gloves?

Nitrile gloves are from a synthetic rubber compound that is disposable material. Nitrile gloves have higher chemical resistance and are more puncture resistant when compared to latex or vinyl gloves. That explains why it is gaining more popularity in the medical, food, and cleaning industries.

Nitrile gloves have been around for quite a while only that they have become more affordable recently and more popular with the outbreak of coronavirus with gloves having high demand. They are mostly useful as exam gloves, but due to their strength, they offer multiple uses.

Nitrile gloves fall into several categories; sterile, non-sterile, and varied lengths from length to arm to suit the user’s needs. They are useful for many benefits like basic exam checks to hazardous material handling such as chemotherapy chemicals.

Can you wash and reuse nitrile gloves?

You can wash and reuse nitrile gloves only if it is the reusable type. There are disposable nitrile gloves and reusable nitrile gloves.

Reusable gloves

Reusable gloves are gloves that you can wash after use with soap and water and reuse them again. Most reusable nitrile gloves come individually wrapped as a pair to keep them sanitary before a use. There is always a label on the brand showing that the pair is reusable. Because of their thickness, they may feel uncomfortable during use or when completing intricate tasks, although they are strong and durable.

Reusable gloves are suitable for standing up to hot water, for instance, in washing dishes and more harsh chemicals such as cleaning tasks involving harsh cleaning agents. They are resistant to irritants such as dish soap and come with a honeycomb texture for a firm grip. They are generally thicker than disposable gloves to provide more durability and strength than disposable gloves.

The critical thing is that reusable gloves require thorough cleaning after use, are heavy-duty, and are usually designed as heavy chemical handling gloves.

Nitrile gloves are generally resistant to punctures, and the choice depends on what situation you are involved in. Your choice of gloves must be ideal for the situation. For instance, reusable gloves may not be suitable for food preparation, where workers have to switch between food items. Also, in medical settings, you cannot use reusable gloves. However, disposable ones are suitable for such situations.

Disposable gloves

Disposable gloves are meant for single use only, and any brand always has a clear label to show that the gloves are disposable after a single-use. They are useful, especially in medical settings and food service where the users have to change gloves as often as possible. They can remove and dispose of them off without worrying about washing them or not having enough gloves available.

Disposable gloves come in packets of a hundred pieces or more and have an opening at the top for easy dispensing in busy locations. They are also generally thinner than reusable gloves.

In comparison with latex gloves, latex is made directly from rubber trees and is the most common disposable glove. However, the medical industry and market at large are rapidly adopting nitrile gloves due to their various advantages over the latex gloves.

Advantages of nitrile over latex gloves

Nitrile is more potent than latex

Nitrile is more chemical and puncture-resistant than latex. In the medical industries, doctors deal with sharp objects such as needles, not to mention the items involved in surgical procedures. Therefore, if you don’t want to take any chances, nitrile gloves are more recommendable than rubber gloves.

Also, in the chemical industry, chemicals are always harmful to the skin, not to mention acids that can severely burn the skin. The puncture resistance than nitrile gloves offer makes it a readily safe option when dealing with lab chemicals or industrial chemicals generally. As a fact, nitrile is advisable for workers handling 67% of chemicals than latex gloves.

More specialists such as nurses, doctors, tattoo artists, lab workers, and food handlers rely on nitrile gloves’ strength, especially with exposure to bloodborne pathogens and other environmental contaminants. They provide excellent durability and barrier protection.

Many people are latex allergic

Many people are latex allergic, so even doctors prefer using nitrile gloves because they are of synthetic rubber. Service providers such as doctors and tattoo artists prefer nitrile because even if the wearer may not be latex allergic, the client might be.

So, for the safety of your client, it is best to use the allergic-free nitrile gloves.

Nitrile is more comfortable

Due to the standard manufacturing techniques, nitrile gloves are significantly closing the gap when it comes to comfort and dexterity. As body heat warms nitrile gloves, they conform closely to the hand fitting comfortably.

They are more elastic than latex or vinyl and applicable in many uses such as automotive, manufacturing, janitorial, and sanitation services.

Nitrile has lower resistance to friction

Lower resistance to friction is what makes nitrile gloves more comfortable to don on and off. The finishing of the gloves creates a seamless experience as the user wears and removes them due to one, the glove powder absorbs excess moisture in the hands, making it easy to don on and off.

Secondly, nitrile gloves have a polymer coating that makes the gloves slip into the hands sleekly and lastly, chlorination reduces the material’s tackiness, making it softer. In industries such as food processing, where there is frequent changing of gloves, nitrile gloves are more suitable.


While latex prices are more volatile than nitrile, it is because they come from rubber. However, nitrile gloves are a lot less volatile, and the manufacturing or production techniques continue to improve. Since nitrile is an artificial product, its production is not as subject to the natural environment’s whims, such as latex.

The bottom line

Due to its affordability, improved production techniques, strength, and allergic free, nitrile gloves are versatile and offer benefits across various industries. If you wonder which gloves are the best and safer to use, give nitrile gloves a try and prove it yourself.


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