Glove Terminology

25 July 2021

Medical Grade: Medical grade gloves are approved for use in hospital, nursing home, or laboratory locations and are generally used for non-surgical procedures such as medical examinations.

Food Grade: Food grade gloves are approved for use for food applications such as preparing food in restaurants or for use in food processing industries.

Allergens: This refers to latex protein present in gloves that could potentially cause allergies.

Tensile Strength: Tensile strength refers to how stretched the gloves can become without ripping or tearing.

Powdered: Powdered gloves have corn starch added to help absorb perspiration. They are generally easier to don than powder-free gloves but their powdered design has been known to cause some allergies.

Powder-Free: Powder-free gloves go through a process known as chlorination. They are a good option for those that have allergies or sensitivities to powdered gloves.

Donning: To put a glove on.

Doffing: To remove a glove.

Beaded Cuff: Refers to a rolled cuff style, which adds strength and reduces liquid roll off.

Chlorination: They are treated with a chlorine solution, rinsed, and dried to get rid of the powdered residue, and latex proteins

Flock Lined: A flocked lining refers to a lining on the inside of a rubber or household glove that makes them more comfortable to wear.

Textured: The finish on the glove designed to allow for a firmer grip to prevent slipping when handling wet objects. This can be just on the finger ‘finger textured’ or the whole glove ‘fully textured’.

Accelerator: Chemicals added to the glove during manufacture to add strength and elasticity and increase the shelf life of disposable gloves. They have been known to cause allergies in some instances, and there are Accelerator free options.

AQL: AQL stands for “Acceptable Quality Level” and refers to an internationally used quality standard for measuring the % of pinhole leaks in disposable gloves. The test process involves checking batches of gloves during manufacturing to see how watertight they are. 1.5 AQL is the standard in the medical world. Gloves with an AQL of 4.0 are not suitable for medical use, they are for industrial and domestic use e.g. cleaning, garages, engineering, dirty factory jobs etc.

Breakthrough Time: The number of minutes it takes for a gloved hand from coming into contact with a chemical until the chemical has broken through the glove and is in contact with your skin.