How is latex gloves made?
Latex is prepared: latex gloves are derived from natural latex, which are not 100% pure. This is because at the beginning of the production process, the manufacturer combines the latex concentrate with some compound chemicals. This step improves the performance of the latex, such as elasticity, as well as stabilizing the material and its shelf life.
Cleaning the mold: The latex is shaped into a glove and the manufacturer uses a hand-shaped ceramic molding machine. The first task is to soak them in water and then bleach. This ensures that there is no residue from the previous batch. Thereafter, the molding agent is immersed in a chemical solution of calcium carbonate and calcium nitrate to aid the latex stick.
Dipping in the latex: Once the former is ready, the manufacturer dries them in a tank filled with latex, the length of time the former is immersed in the can varies based on the thickness of the glove required.
Vulcanized rubber: Ensure that the rubber does not crack when dry, and the molding machine enters the oven for drying and curing. The development of the vulcanization process and the formation of latex rubber are indispensable.
Rinsing gloves: This process involves soaking the gloves in a water tank to remove excess latex protein to reduce the risk of allergic reactions in the wearer and enhance the sensation.
Roll up the sleeves: Once the gloves are leached, the manufacturer rolls up the cuffs to make the gloves easier to remove. The gloves may be leached again after being beaded.
Application powder: If the gloves are powder, they enter the wet food grade corn starch slurry. After that, the manufacturer dries the gloves again.
Chlorinated or polymer coated gloves: If the gloves are powder-free, they will be replaced to make it easier to put on the gloves. The first is chlorination, which makes the latex not sticky. The second involves coating the glove with a polymer which makes the surface smooth.
Peeling the gloves: When the gloves are finished, the workers remove them from the molding machine by hand.