Specialized protective gloves are available and in good condition

Corrective actions:

Take the time to do a risk assessment and select the appropriate glove for use in the laboratory. Instruct lab personnel on the different types of gloves and when to use a particular type. Replace reusable gloves at first sign of cracks, tears or holes as they don’t offer protection any longer.

Below are some common situations and chemicals requiring specialized gloves: 

  • -80 ULT freezers and liquid nitrogen must have cryogenic gloves available 
  • Autoclaves need to have thermal gloves. Cryogenic gloves may melt if used with hot items 
  • Chemicals, like nitric acid and methanol, readily permeate nitrile gloves in less than a minute.

Check the glove recommendations for the chemicals you work with and ensure lab practices are safe for the glove material and process.  

For assistance on glove selection, see the “Chemical Resistance Guides” on the EHS website or contact EHS at 517-355-0153 to set up a consultation.

Additional information:

Gloves must be worn to protect hands from exposure to hazardous materials, heat and cold substances. Glove selection should be based on an appropriate risk assessment.

As mentioned above many chemicals can pass through or damage disposable gloves and they are not designed to protect hands from heat and cold so it is imperative to select the appropriate type of gloves to be used for your lab activities.

For example, gloves used to manipulate cryogens should be impervious, offer cryogenic protection and sufficiently large to be readily thrown off should a cryogen spill; rubber gloves should always be used when handling corrosive materials and heat resistance gloves should be used when removing items from an autoclave.


  • BMBL 6th ed. HHS Publication No. (CDC) 300859
  • MSU Biosafety and Security Manual
  • MSU Chemical Hygiene Plan 2.1 (G), 5.3.1 and 5.3.2.
  • OSHA Standard 1910.1450 App A
  • MSU PPE manual (PDF)