Some people get an allergic reaction on their skin when it comes to contact with epoxy and resin. So, no matter the project you are working on, wearing safety equipment is crucial to protect yourself in case of accidents.
So, what kind of gloves to use with epoxy? Nitrile or blue gloves are the most recommended gloves to wear.
Latex gloves used to be the choice. However, the white material involved in producing them causes allergies in some people as well. Latex gloves are also less effective in protecting skin from most chemicals, unlike blue nitrile gloves.
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Knowing All About Nitrile Gloves: Why Can We Use Them With Epoxy?
Before the popularity of nitrile, people have been using latex gloves for many years. However, the lubricating material or the white powder inside latex gloves has been found to irritate the skin. It can also allow amines or chemicals to pass through and contact the skin.
Fortunately, nitrile was later on introduced. It is a type of rubber and a material that epoxy resin does not stick to. Unlike latex, nitrile is generally resistant to chemicals. It blocks the passage of harmful amines, so your skin won’t get irritated.
This is why it can provide you protection from accidental splashes. It gives you more room to move as you work on your project.
Overall, you must use premium quality tough nitrile gloves. These are the best gloves for epoxy resin. These are more durable, puncture-resistant, and don’t contain the same substance from latex that can irritate the skin.
You can purchase nitrile gloves from hardware stores and even pharmacies.
Alternatives to Nitrile Gloves
Nitrile gloves are more expensive than disposable ones. However, you can find substitutes that offer similar protection. They may not be at the same level as nitrile but are safe enough.
- Silicone is one of the alternatives. The material doesn’t mix nor stick with epoxy so it is effective. Only use special silicone gloves for resin. If you get the standard type for hardworking projects, it may not be sufficient to protect your skin.
- If you are handling other materials, vinyl gloves with epoxy work well too. These are not expensive, but they are only effective for low-infection environments. These gloves are less durable than latex and nitrile. Take note as well to avoid using vinyl with resin as it can get dissolved.
Importance of Using Gloves With Epoxy
Epoxy resins are common household chemicals used in painting, crafts, and construction projects. These are solid adhesives and work well with most materials. Remember when you need to re-install bolts on your doors or cabinets? Epoxy was most likely used there.
Finished resin systems are generally non-toxic. However, some of its components are harmful.
- When epoxy resin contacts your eyes or skin, it can cause swelling, redness, and, sometimes, skin lesions. In exceptional cases, it can also lead to skin cancer, especially for prolonged exposure over frequent periods.
- In terms of inhalation, the pungent odor of epoxy may cause shortness of breath, asthma, dizziness, and nausea, among other effects. The effects may not be instant. After all, it varies from person to person, and on the extent of exposure.
What is crucial is you don epoxy gloves before handling such substances. The type of gloves matters as you don’t need an additional irritant should the material also be harmful to your skin.
Other Safety Practices
Aside from gloves, you must take safety precautions before handling epoxy resin and other similar substances.
This includes wearing N95 masks, personal protective equipment (PPE), and even goggles. The latter can help keep you safe from accidental splashing and inhalation of fumes.
No matter the project, you may have wondered, “what kind of gloves to use with epoxy?” Nitrile gloves for resin are the most recommended use. Apart from its strong durability compared to latex and vinyl, nitrile doesn’t have any lubricating powder that can irritate the skin.
Getting a pair that fits snugly is better, so the harmful chemicals and substances won’t get inside and contact your skin. It is always better to ask the seller from the store—physical or online—to know the right size for you. After all, safety should always be your first priority.
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