When Should You Not Use Disposable Nitrile Gloves?

Disposable nitrile gloves have become a staple in many industries, praised for their durability, chemical resistance, and overall versatility. But as versatile as they are, there are specific scenarios where nitrile gloves might not be the best choice. In this post, we’ll explore when not to use disposable nitrile gloves and what alternatives you should consider.

1. High-Heat Environments

While disposable nitrile gloves excel in many areas, they are not suitable for high-heat environments. Nitrile material can degrade or even melt when exposed to extreme temperatures. If you’re working in environments with high heat, such as welding or working with open flames, gloves made from heat-resistant materials like Kevlar or leather are more appropriate.

2. Certain Chemical Exposures

Despite their broad chemical resistance, nitrile gloves are not impervious to all chemicals. Some substances can penetrate and degrade nitrile, reducing their effectiveness. For example, strong acids and bases will quickly break down nitrile rubber. Solvents such as acetone also cause nitrile gloves to deteriorate.

Chemicals Nitrile Gloves Don’t Protect Against:

  • Ketones
  • Strong Acids
  • Alcohols
  • Halogenated Hydrocarbons
  • Aromatic Hydrocarbons
  • Esters
  • Ethers
  • Amines

3. Type IV Allergic Reactions

While disposable nitrile gloves are a popular alternative for those with latex allergies, they can still cause Type IV hypersensitivity reactions, also known as delayed hypersensitivity. This type of allergy is caused by the accelerators used in the manufacturing process and can lead to skin irritation and dermatitis.

4. Low-Risk Environments

In environments where the risk of exposure to harmful chemicals or pathogens is low, the higher cost and durability of nitrile gloves may not be necessary. For tasks such as light cleaning, food handling, or simple household chores, more economical glove options may be sufficient.

5. Extended Use and Reuse

Disposable nitrile gloves are designed for single use, and their integrity can be compromised with extended wear or attempts to reuse them. Reusing nitrile gloves can lead to contamination, tears, and decreased protection.

6. Electrical Work

Disposable nitrile gloves do not provide adequate protection against electrical hazards. If you're working with live wires or electrical components, nitrile gloves are not appropriate protection.


Disposable nitrile gloves are incredibly versatile and suitable for many applications, but they are not a one-size-fits-all solution. Understanding their limitations and appropriate use cases will help you make better safety decisions and ensure you’re using the right glove for the right job.

Remember, always assess the specific requirements of your task and consult manufacturer guidelines to choose the best protective equipment. Stay safe and glove up wisely!

If you have any questions or need further guidance please contact us.