We’re all human, and we all jump to various conclusions about various topics without necessarily intending to. Safety gloves are absolutely no exception to this common expectation. There are many misconceptions about safety gloves, ranging from their level of protection to their upfront cost, and it’s easy to understand why. The varied sizes, cut levels, coatings and liners would mean little to one who doesn’t know safety gloves like the back of their hand! This is why we’re here to clear up the rumours and put these common myths to bed!
1. THE HIGHER THE PRICE, THE BETTER THE PROTECTION
No – just no. Whilst in search of safety gloves, it’s not advisable to go onto a website and filter gloves by ‘price high to low,’ because the most expensive pair will by no means guarantee you the highest protection. For example, our most expensive cut resistant glove is the TG5580, but it wouldn’t be the safest option for all tasks. The price of a pair of safety gloves is defined by several factors, with the biggest two being the type of yarn used in the liner and the type of coating used. The yarn used does determine the cut protection of the glove, but the coatings do also come into the equation when price is concerned. Always make sure you check the cut protection before you do buy your safety gloves. If you’re interested in more information about our glove coatings, you can take a look at our article on nitrile coatings.
2. MORE LAYERS IN A GLOVE MEANS MORE PROTECTION
Some things just aren’t as they seem – even when it comes to safety gloves! Don’t be fooled because a thicker glove definitely doesn’t immediately guarantee a higher cut protection. For example, most thermal gloves are thick to the touch, yet you should never just presume that this means they have better cut resistance. In fact, lots of thermal gloves actually have low-cut protection, therefore, there is no point buying a glove for its thickness because it could be the entirely wrong glove for the job and could end up compromising you rather than protecting you. The best advice we could give you is to always ensure that you check the cut resistance before buying a glove in accord with your own judgement and the appearance of the glove itself.
3. CHEMICAL RESISTING GLOVES CAN BE USED WITH ALL CHEMICALS
Wrong! It’s easy to believe because when a glove is pronounced ‘chemical resistant,’ one would automatically assume that the statement encompasses all chemicals. Science is legitimate – there are thousands of chemicals and if we’re thinking realistically, is it even slightly likely that safety gloves are going to be resistant to all those chemicals out there? No. This is why if you’re intending to buy a pair of gloves for use in highly chemical environments, it is absolutely essential to check which chemicals the gloves aren’t compatible with. It’s all very well to check which ones they are compatible with, but if you don’t want your glove to simply dissolve whilst you wear it, we do recommend doing your research before you use the wrong glove with the wrong chemical!
4. CUT RESISTANT IS ‘CUT PROOF’
Do you remember your teacher telling you to read the question carefully? Well, the principal applies throughout your whole life. There has never been a glove invented that can honestly be labelled as cut proof. Safety gloves reduce the chances of a hand injury occurring to the wearer, but they don’t eliminate the chances! You may be thinking that if the gloves aren’t cut proof, then why bother wearing them? Well, 70% of hand injuries occur when the victim isn’t wearing any gloves at all so if you fancy your chances as the 30%, it is your choice entirely! But our point is that you shouldn’t fall into the trap of not taking the time or care to check a little closer. If you came to this conclusion so fast, you may also have failed to realise that there are also various levels of cut resistance as opposed to just the one ‘cut proof.’ If you continue to believe that your hands are virtually invincible when you don a pair of cut resistant gloves, you are unwittingly putting your hands in hazardous situations.
5. THE GLOVE COATING IS THE PART THAT OFFERS THE CUT PROTECTION
When your safety glove coatings start to wear off, you may panic and think that your hands are no longer protected. Allow us to confirm that this is not the case. Whilst the coatings are important for grip, believe it or not, the cut protection is mainly in the yarn. Yes – the plain, unsuspecting yarn – the part that makes up the innocent looking liner! The gloves with the higher cut protection may not look or feel much different to the gloves with lower cut protection, but it’s what makes up the yarn that truly counts. To give a glove high cut protection, the yarn must contain a variety of strong, cut resistant materials such as glass, steel, and polyester, all of which are designed to prevent a blade from reaching your skin. With these incorporated into the yarn, the liner becomes a defence system in itself, and massively reduces the chances of hand injuries. Don't be fooled though, the glove coating does add a certain amount of cut protection. The EN388 test is carried out on the palm (where the coating is). Not sure what EN388 is? Click here.
We've addressed the 5 most common misconceptions about safety gloves and we hope you found this useful! Any other questions drop us a line.