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Art Hazards

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Protecting Your Skin and Eyes

Wear protective gloves, goggles and clothing when working with materials that are harmful to skin or eyes.

Wear chemical-resistant gloves when working with solvents or corrosive liquids

  • Chemical-resistant gloves are made of a variety of materials.
  • Some are disposable and some are reusable.
  • Selecting the wrong glove material could allow chemicals to pass through onto your skin. This is a potentially serious situation.
  • Choose a glove that is resistant to the material(s) you are handling.
  • Some gloves provide superior protection but limit your dexterity or tear easily. See the glove chart below.

Disposal gloves are thinner, flexible and lightweight.

  • You can double disposable gloves to make them last longer.
  • Use disposable gloves when contact with chemicals is not likely and you need a barrier to protect you from non-chemical materials.
  • Don't use disposable gloves when you use corrosive or highly hazardous chemicals.
  • Never reuse disposable gloves.

Reusable gloves are thicker - over 10 mil.

  • They can limit your dexterity.
  • Use reusable, durable gloves when you expect to have extended chemical contact and/or you are working with corrosive liquids or highly toxic compounds.

When you're done with durable gloves

  • If you have immersed reusable gloves in chemicals, let them drip back into the chemical solution before rinsing them off for reuse.
  • Otherwise, rinse them off over the sink before removing and allow them to air dry.
  • Inspect them before each use for discoloration, cracking or other damage.
  • If you suspect the gloves are damaged from use, dispose of them in the trash.

Removal and disposal of gloves

Carefully dispose of gloves exposed to chemicals.

  • Pinch the wrist of one glove with the other and turn it inside out when removing it.
  • Slip your ungloved finger under the edge of the other glove to do the same.
  • Place both gloves in a plastic bag, seal it and dispose of it in the trash.

Wash your hands well after working with hazardous chemicals and removing protective gloves.
Contact your physician for advice if you develop rashes or other discomfort. Some people have allergic reactions to latex or the glove powder. Exposure to latex can cause occupational asthma in some people. It can also worsen preexisting symptoms for those already suffering from asthma. Some people wear thin cotton liner gloves under plastic gloves for comfort.

The chart below summarizes glove compatibility data from glove suppliers and governmental sites. The ratings are based on the permeation rate of the chemicals. Chemicals can often permeate through a glove without causing a visible change. Other factors to consider are the chemicals you use and how and where you will use them.

Glove manufacturer guidelines to protect your skin from solvents


Art products that may contain this hazardous solvent

Occasional chemical contact(disposable or durable)

Extended contact or immersion (durable - >10 mil thick)

Acetone Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Latex (double glove) or butyl Butyl
Citrus solvent Brush cleaner Nitrile Nitrile
Cyclohexane Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile Nitrile
Ethyl acetate Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) PVA or butyl
Ethyl alcohol (Ethanol) Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile Nitrile
Heptane Aerosol adhesives and fixatives, rubber cement Nitrile (double glove) Nitrile or polyvinyl alcohol (PVA)
Hexane Aerosol adhesives and fixatives, rubber cement Nitrile (double glove) Nitrile or PVA
Isopropyl alcohol (Isopropanol) Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile Nitrile
Kerosene Brush cleaner Nitrile or Neoprene Nitrile
Methyl alcohol (Methanol) Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile (double glove) Butyl
Methylene chloride Paint stripper Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) PVA
Methyl ethyl ketone Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) PVA
Mineral spirits Brush cleaner and paint thinner, aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile Nitrile
Naphtha, VM&P Brush cleaner and paint thinner, aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile Nitrile
Toluene Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile (double glove) Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA)
Turpentine Brush cleaner and thinner Nitrile (double glove) PVA
Xylene Aerosol adhesives and fixatives Nitrile (double glove) PVA

Protect your home and family

  • Don’t track toxic materials out of the studio on your shoes. Use a door mat and clean it regularly.
  • Wear one set of clothes in the studio and change into clean clothes when you leave.
  • Wash the clothes you wear in your studio separately from your other clothes.

To learn about the hazards of the chemicals you use

  • Search the internet for the name of the product followed by the letters "SDS" to find a safety data sheet for the product.
  • Take the time to read the hazard warnings and the recommendations for personal protection.


Ansell 7th Edition Chemical Resistance Guide (PDF); North - Chemical Resistance Guide; Showa Best Glove; Oxford University; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Dartmouth University

Note: These are general recommendations. Contact the technical service department of the glove manufacturer for reliable advice.