Do You Need to Wear Gloves When Cleaning?
Cleaning isn’t many peoples’ favorite pastime but it is a necessary part of adulthood. There are many ways to make cleaning an easier, less invasive part of your everyday life with plenty of tools and protective items aimed at making cleaning a bit less unpleasant. Gloves are one of these protective tools. But are they truly necessary when cleaning like the commercials show us?
The answer? It depends on what cleaning activity you’re doing, what products you use, and your own personal preference.
The Case For Wearing Gloves While You Clean
There are some diehard fans of wearing gloves to clean out there. Gloves can be a beneficial aid while picking up around the house. Here are a handful of reasons why someone might incorporate this tool into their cleaning regiment.
Cleaning can be a sudsy, slippery venture. It can be frustrating to fumble through the process, dropping cleaning tools, products, or dishes along the way. One benefit of cleaning gloves is the added grip they provide. This type of glove is usually comprised of heavy-duty latex or rubber. Since these materials have a natural cling to them, cleaning gloves can offer you an extra hold on whatever is in your hands. This can prevent a number of slips, broken plates, and more.
Protection From Dry or Damaged Skin
Cleaning can be extremely harsh on the skin. Between stripping chemicals to hot water, your hands go through a lot when cleaning up around the house. Our skin doesn’t react well to hot water. Thirty minutes of dishwashing can leave you with dry, rough hands. Chemicals can also dry out and damage your skin. Detergents and solvents can strip away your skin’s natural oil barrier.
Sadly, this can result in a range of conditions from dermatitis all the way to chemical burns. Gloves can act as a layer of protection against all the potential damage that can occur when in contact with chemicals and hot water. Working with chemicals like chlorine can be a huge dermatological problem.
Protection Against Bacteria
Close encounters with bacteria go hand and hand with cleaning. Our homes are a breeding ground for the little lifeforms. Our kitchen sink, bathroom skin, and toilet all have the potential to breed harmful bacteria such as staph, yeast, mold, E. coli, and more. Gloves are an excellent way to assure you won’t get sick from handling such germs. They can also come in handy when someone in your home catches a bug. You can use the gloves to clean up after them so you can maintain a clean bill of health while taking care of your loved one.
The Case Against Wearing Gloves While You Clean
There are some arguments against using cleaning gloves too. Although they can be useful, there are some downsides to incorporating them into your cleaning regiment. Here are some reasons why you might want to think twice about using gloves when you clean.
False Sense of Security
Gloves can be helpful, but only when used properly. Just like bare hands, your gloves will pick up any germs and pathogens they come in contact with. If you move from one cleaning task to the next without switching out or sanitizing your gloves, you may just be spreading these harmful pathogens around.
If you do choose to use gloves, it’s important to stay aware of this possibility and not act as if you can just toss on a pair of gloves and go from cleaning the bathroom to cleaning the kitchen without tracking germs around.
Bad For The Environment
Cleaning gloves and disposable gloves are primarily made from rubber and latex. These two materials are technically biodegradable but they can still take up to five years to fully biodegrade. That’s plenty of time for them to make their way into our waterways and end up in some unlucky animal’s stomach.
Although there are reusable gloves, you’ll likely still need to replace them over time when they inevitably break down. While they aren’t as bad as plastic that can take centuries to decompose, they still pose a threat to our fragile ecosystems.
Masking The True Issue
Many of us believe harsh chemicals are necessary to kill off the harmful pathogens lurking in our homes. We press on using harmful cleaning solutions and mask the issue by protecting ourselves with gloves. But this doesn’t have to be the only way. There are plenty of effective, eco-friendly alternatives that are far easier on the skin.
At Green Earth, we formulate our disinfecting products with Electro-Biocide™ technology that is safe for you, your children, and pets to come in contact with. When you use our powerful disinfectant, you don’t need to worry about causing harm to yourself or the other members of your household. You can say goodbye to cleaning gloves and hello to a sanitary, sparkling home.
Now, disinfectants shouldn’t be used as the go-to for grime and dirt removal. Disinfectants are used as the finisher, to kill off unwanted bacteria. For a full list of natural, hand-friendly household cleaners to use before a disinfectant product, view our other article on a list of the best natural cleaning products.
To Wear Gloves Or Not To Wear Gloves?
At the end of the day, the choice is yours. There are plenty of pros and cons to wearing cleaning gloves. What’s most important is to understand the potential negative consequences of using gloves and adjusting accordingly.
Remember to sanitize them between cleaning jobs, consider your environmental impact, and evaluate whether using harsh chemicals in your home is actually a necessity. With all those considerations in mind, you can move forward with an informed mindset to see if cleaning with gloves is the right choice for you!