Man putting on work glove

Protect Your Hands


When it comes to working, your hands are one of the most important tools. Since you use your hands so often, it is extremely important to keep them protected with safety gloves in every type of setting. Preventing injuries is crucial and required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

OSHA requires that every worker has to be provided with personal protective equipment when performing hazardous work. They state “employers shall select and require employees to use appropriate hand protection when employees’ hands are exposed to hazards such as those from skin absorption of harmful substances; severe cuts or lacerations; severe abrasions; punctures; chemical burns; thermal burns; and harmful temperature extremes”.

With the rules in mind, it all comes down to what type of substances will be handled, and what type of glove is right for those conditions. There are a multitude of different kinds of protective gloves, but the main two are cut-resistant and heat resistant. Cut-resistant gloves are the best option when working with sharp materials all day, or if you work on a site that you may not know what you will be handling that day. Heat-resistant gloves are made for a job where hot tools or objects will be handled throughout the day. Regardless of what items you will be handling that day, having a protective barrier between that material and your hands is key to work safety. 

 

Man carrying ladder with gloves on

Choosing the Right Glove


Looks can be deceiving. All gloves can look relatively the same and you may think that they all serve the same purpose, but that is not the case. Seeing a strong pair of well-made leather gloves can seem like they would be cut-resistant. However, leather is not the material you want when handling sharp objects. Leather is very similar to the toughness of our skin. Having this layer won’t do much when it comes to saving your hands. Instead, look into gloves made from engineered synthetic fibers. This is the same material that is used for bulletproof vests. For a proper heat-resistant pair of gloves, the best material is Kevlar. It will protect against extremely hot and cold temperatures. 

Some other factors to consider when finding the right glove is the fit, other resistances, and style. Comfort plays a huge role in the glove game. Not only will it make wearing them easier, but more comfort helps encourage more employees to wear them for longer periods of time. Some other resistances that are good to have in a glove are vibration and chemical resistance. Again, depending on the items that will be handled, these are just other features that can help enhance safety. Styling of the glove is also an important factor. For example, the grip strength. Having a specified grip on the palm side of the glove can help make tasks easier in the long run. Different grips can be utilized when it comes to handling different types of tools that are all different sizes. Overall, finding what glove best fits your work needs as well as comfort needs, is the key to happy and healthy hands.

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