Disposable Gloves Buyer’s Checklist

Selecting which type of glove to use may seem simple, but there are some things you should know that can improve productivity and reduce costs.

For example, a Poly glove costs less than a Vinyl glove. If your operation requires more frequent glove changing, Poly may be the right choice.

However, if you are preparing multiple meals without having to change gloves in between, the thinner Poly glove may tear more frequently. And the Poly glove’s looser-fit can slow down your cook.

So in this instance, the better durability and fit of vinyl gloves is likely to be a money saver!

Latex gloves and Nitrile gloves both provide a skin-hugging fit and great finger-tip sensitivity. Nitrile gloves provide superior resistance to punctures and tearing and last longer in animal fats. So if you are a butcher or work in a BBQ joint, nitrile gloves will cut down on ripped gloves. That saves both time (throwing out ripped gloves/putting on new gloves) and money (by using fewer gloves).

Here are some questions you should ask when selecting a glove:

Frequency of Changing:

  • How often do we need to change gloves?


  • What level of fit is required for the task?
  • Is the trade-off between a looser-fitting glove and cost acceptable for the task?
  • Does the task require finer hand-work and touch sensitivity?


  • Will the task result in tearing of the glove?
  • Will the gloves be used in animal fats?

Cold Food Versus Heat:

  • Will the gloves be used around heat? Poly gloves should not be used for grilling and handling hot food.


  • Does the color of the glove need to be distinguished from the food?
  • Some operations use a blue glove, which can be more readily identified if a piece breaks off the glove.


  • Latex gloves contain natural proteins that may cause allergic reactions for some individuals. Synthetic gloves, vinyl gloves and nitrile gloves provide similar characteristics to latex (e.g. fit) without the protein.

Regardless of Glove Type:

  • Only use gloves that will provide a secure level of protection. Lower quality products are likely to have defects such as pinholes that allow pathogens be transmitted from hands to food, putting your customers and business at added risk.
  • Always wash hands thoroughly before and after using gloves. Gloves are NOT a substitute for proper hand hygiene.

Glove Type Selection Chart:

Disposable Gloves Buyer's Checklist