The information provided in the Glove Selection Guide table is a generalization about the performance of each glove material. Actual performance may vary based on material type and manufacturer. For this reason, this information must not be the only source used when selecting the appropriate glove for your process. Other resources are listed on our PPE resources page. You may also call EH&S at (515) 294-5359 for assistance.

Glove type Advantages Disadvantages Uses Availability
Latex (exam type) Comfortable, excellent dexterity Exposure to latex proteins may elicit allergic reaction. Avoid liquid chemicals. Biological agents, dry chemicals Chemistry Stores, Central Stores
Natural rubber Excellent flexibility, tear resistant Exposure to latex proteins may elicit allergic reaction. Avoid oils, grease, and hydrocarbon derivatives. Acids, alkalis, salts, and alcohols Chemistry Stores, Centrals Stores
Nitrile synthetic rubber (exam type) Chemical resistance data available, good-to-excellent dexterity. May fatigue hands. Avoid prolonged contact with chemicals Protection from chemical splashes. Chemistry Stores, Central Stores
Nitrile synthetic rubber Very good resistance to abrasion and perforation. Avoid: Solvents containing ketones, oxidizing acids and organic compounds containing nitrogen Oils, lubricants, hydrocarbon derivatives, and chlorinated solvents Chemistry Stores, Central Stores
Neoprene synthetic rubber Not as flexible as natural rubber. Avoid: See manufacturer's selection guide Multi-purpose chemical resistance, acids, aliphatic solvents, petroleum products, alcohols Chemistry Stores, Central Stores
Butyl synthetic rubber Highest permeation resistance to gas or water vapors Expensive. Avoid: See manufacturer's selection guide Esters, ketones, alcohols Off-campus safety supplier
Viton (fluoroelastomer) Most chemically resistant of all synthetic rubbers Expensive. Minimal resistance to cuts and abrasions. Avoid: See manufacturer's selection guide Aromatic, chlorinated and aliphatic hydrocarbons Off-campus safety supplier
Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) Excellent abrasion resistance. No latex proteins (non-allergenic) Weak mechanical resistance. Avoid: Solvents containing ketones and aromatic solvents Acids/bases, alcohols, fats, petroleum hydrocarbons Chemistry Stores
Poly Vinyl Alcohol (PVA) Avoid: Contact with water or water-based solutions, water solubles Acids/bases, aromatic and chlorinated solvents Off-campus safety supplier
Laminate material (Silver Shield, Barrier) Very slippery when wet, reduced dexterity, minimal cut, snag and puncture resistance. Avoid: See manufacturer's selection guide Highest chemical resistance of any glove material Off-campus safety supplier