Call us now on 01702 600000

  • Speedy delivery
    Our own fleet of vehicles & trained drivers
  • Free Local Delivery
    across the South East –
    Essex / Kent / London
  • Order Collection
    from our trade counter

Latex Gloves v Nitrile Glove – Some “HANDY” information for you

No matter what industry you work in, it’s likely that you’ve come across latex or nitrile protective gloves for protection in a commercial environment at some point in your career.

In the medical industries, health professionals will use protective gloves whilst examining patients or handling sterile equipment. In food manufacturing or hospitality, workers will wear protective gloves whilst preparing food or drinks. Cleaners or janitors will wear protective gloves whilst handling strong cleaning chemicals or during particularly dirty jobs.

Generally, these protective gloves are made of one of two material – latex or nitrile. Which type of protective gloves you wear will depend on several factors.

When should we wear protective gloves?
As a rule, protective gloves should be worn in order to protect the wearer’s skin in an environment with potentially harmful chemicals or to minimise the spread of germs and bacteria in the workplace. Both latex gloves and nitrile gloves are effective at these two tasks. However, they do still have some differences.

What is nitrile?
Nitrile is a synthetic rubber compound, often used as a latex alternative for those who have latex allergies. To form nitrile, carbon and nitrogen atoms are connected by triple bonds – meaning that there can be several different types of nitrile.

The history of nitrile gloves
The method of synthesising hydrogen cyanide was first discovered by Carl Whilhem Scheele, a German-Swedish chemist, in 1782, resulting in the world’s first introduction to the nitrile family. Fast forward nearly 200 years, and the first nitrile rubber was made in the year 1934 by Erich Konrad and Eduard Tschunkur when they developed an elastomer.

Resistance to oil and grease ensured that it quickly grew in popularity due to the shortage of natural rubber during World War 2. The first nitrile disposable gloves were marketed in 1991 – as an alternative to latex gloves.

Are nitrile gloves latex free?
Yes, nitrile gloves are completely latex-free. However, it’s worth noting that nitrile gloves do still pose a very low risk of triggering allergies, as they often contain cheaper additives such as chemical accelerators. For non-allergen nitrile gloves, look for ones that don’t contain accelerator chemicals.

Nitrile’s properties:

  • Good chemical resistance
  • High puncture resistance
  • Latex-free
  • Mould to the hand
  • Good for extended use
  • Good in high-risk situations
  • Chemical resistant
  • Long shelf life
  • Learn more about disposable nitrile gloves.

What is latex?
Latex is a natural compound taken from rubber trees. It has been used as a material in practical applications since 1839, when Charles Goodyear discovered vulcanisation – the process that transforms natural rubber into something usable.

What is the process of tapping rubber?
The process of tapping latex was developed in Victorian times. Latex is harvested by making a shallow spiralling slice into the bark of a rubber tree to create what’s known as a tapping panel. A tapping panel can yield a flow of latex that lasts up to five hours, when the tapping process usually moves on to the other side of the tree to allow the first tapping panel to ‘heal’.

The latex that comes from the tapping panels runs down the tree into a waiting cup, where it’s collected and coagulates. Additions are often made to the natural latex to help preserve it for longer.

Latex’s properties:

  • Comfortable
  • Dexterous
  • Fit closely to the skin
  • Touch-sensitive
  • Good for extended use
  • Work well in high-risk situations
  • Cost-effective
  • Biodegradable

Learn more about disposable latex gloves.

Which is better, latex or nitrile gloves?
Nitrile is often regarded to be a higher quality material than latex, but that usually comes with a slightly higher price. Latex gloves can be cheaper but should do a perfectly good job if strong chemical resistance or puncture resistance isn’t mandatory. But, on the whole, whether you should use latex or nitrile gloves depends on the task you will be completing.

HSE has a guide to selecting the right pair of protective gloves for your needs, and you can read more about the different types of chemical safety gloves on our blog


Essex Supplies COVID 19 Update 25th March 2020

Essex Supplies UK – Supplies Update
25th March 2020

Dear Valued Customers,

Statement of Coronavirus from Essex Supplies UK Cleaning & Hygiene Supplies

Our staff at Essex Supplies some of many years, however, nobody can remember such a surge in demand to the extent of what we are currently experiencing. We can, therefore, say with some confidence that we are in a completely unprecedented period and ask for your support and understanding at this exceptional time.

The purpose of this short note is to further explain the current situation and outline some of the hard work that is being undertaken by our teams in very challenging circumstances.


We are experiencing extraordinary level of orders, 3/4x our usual levels, even after some of the mitigating actions we have outlined below.

Our teams are working with our manufacturer partners to source and secure future stock. In most instances, we are our manufacturer partners biggest customers, and they are rightly prioritising deliveries to us as well as the NHS. However, we are experiencing some shortages in Coronavirus related stocks (hand gels, sanitisers etc.), due to the demand for which is more than 50x usual levels.

We have made several concrete actions to ensure we maintain supply for these Coronavirus related products:

• In many instances, our manufacturer partners have been instructed by the government to limit sales of Coronavirus related products to the NHS and first-line responders (police, ambulance and the fire service). If you are a customer which fits this profile, we will already be working to provide these products to you.
• As and when further product becomes available we will start releasing this to non-NHS and front-line responders.
• We are having daily calls with our key manufacturer partners to discuss manufacturing capacity, demand and delivery timescales. This is, however, an incredibly fluid process, with the availability of Coronavirus related product stocks changing by the minute.
• We are sourcing alternative Coronavirus related products using our extensive network of approved suppliers. We are sourcing these from within aUK, however, most of these products have longer lead times than usual (6-8 weeks is not uncommon).

We currently have some manufacturer supply issues on non-coronavirus related products as well as affected products above , however, to maintain product availability to all customers, we may need to reduce quantities in instances of obvious bulk buying, in particular where orders are over double the regular ordering run rates. We hope you understand that this measure is necessary for the continued stability of the supply chain.


We have implemented several measures of our well tested plans to deal with the surge in orders that we are currently experiencing. We have outlined these below,

In addition to our extensive own fleet, we will be:• Asking all staff to work additional hours over the next two weeks including weekends.
• Ensuring driver routing is to the maximum available hours.
• Asking which customers can take a night or weekend delivery (if this is of interest please talk to your account manager).

Thank you again for your continued business, your understanding and your support through this challenging period. There may be some delays in the current unprecedented period, however, all our staff are working tirelessly and in many cases around the clock to serve all customers as quickly as possible.

Yours Sincerely,

John Gosling / Managing Director

Dan Scopes / Sales Director

Essex Supplies & Northwood Hygiene ” Working together to protect the Environment”

Essex Supplies is in partnership with Northwood Hygiene and is please do work with a company that has a real interest in the Environment , within their products supplies and there factories.

Their is a “VERY” strong statement from Northwood ,  which is what we look for in a supplier at Essex Supplies

Please download the attached  NEW Environmental Flyer which covers their operations and product packaging across the board.

Northwood Environmental Flyer



Northwood Recycling provides waste paper management solutions to Northwood associated companies. We ensure that reclaimed paper is taken care of legally, diverting over 100,000 tonnes per year of recovered fibre back into the raw material supply chain.

Essex Supplies Refuse Sacks – Working closely with our EU Certplast Supplier



• Operating and environmental permits required for the country of operation

• Staff training, qualifications and organisation

• Incoming material procedures and controls

• Stock Management

Recycling Process and associated mass balance calculation

• Controls on recycled outputs

• Environmental protection

• Quality Management and traceability



Transparency through the integration of diverse audit schemes into one common scheme

Best Practice to allow recyclers to demonstrate the fulfillment of REACH and food contact compliance

Certification focuses on material traceability in the supply chain and throughout recycling Process, assessment of conformity and recycled content in the end product and as such uses as a base the principals set out in EN15343-2007. Assessment of Recycled Output is based on the various EN Standards developed for the characterisation of plastic recyclates

“NEW” Pro Mist Mop System

Introducing the new Pro-mist mop system from Robert Scott
We’re excited to launch our latest floorcare innovation – the Pro-mist mop system. The microfibre mop kit combines the new, ergonomic Pro-mist spray handle and microfibre pads for effective rapid response cleaning, without the need for excessive amounts of waste water or chemical agents.

The Pro-mist features a removable bottle and spray trigger which delivers a fine mist of solution directly to the cleaning surface, helping you to clean and dry floors quickly. This eradicates the need for buckets, which makes it ideal for spot cleaning. The mop’s lightweight break-frame has a built-in release system to avoid user contact with the soiled mop and reduces strain on joints.

The mop system is designed to be completely versatile to meet the needs of today’s janitorial workforce and is available with a range of microfibre pads. The antibacterial Nano-Ag silver mop pads are designed to prevent bacterial growth. This means that 99.9% of the bacteria picked up by the mop is eliminated within 30 minutes of contact. Nano silver works effectively to reduce the five most common bacteria – Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Escherichia coli and Salmonella.

Pro-mist mop

The antibacterial properties of the microfibre material also means that the Nano-Ag pads can be used without any chemical cleaning agents, and they can be washed at ambient temperatures of 30 to 40 degrees, making them a more environmentally-friendly cleaning option.

The Pro-mist can also be supplied with disposable Mi-mop microfibre pads, which are ideal in hygiene-critical areas such as restaurants or hospitals where there’s no access to laundry facilities, or where infection control policy requirements must be met to reduce cross contamination risk.

The antibacterial kit features the Pro-mist spray handle, Uniko break-frame, and a blue Nano-Ag microcide® silver mop pad. The disposable kit features the Pro-mist spray handle, Uniko break-frame, and a 10-pack of white disposable microfibre mops. Both pads are available in industry standard colour coding to prevent cross contamination.

Are you in the know – about “Microfibre” cleaning products ?

In the know – about microfibre cleaning products

In the first of a new series of know how blogs we share all you need to know about microfibre, with tips from our product expert Kelly Brierley.

Though by no means a new product, the technology of microfibre cloth is advancing to continuously to meet the demands of today’s cleaning industry and the needs of end users.

While the physical components of the fibre are unlikely to change significantly in the future, new technologies are already making a difference. For example, the introduction of nano-enhanced microfibre cloths with components such as silver – the premise being that bacteria is unable to survive when exposed to silver meaning the risk of cross contamination is greatly reduced.

Microfibre is also the perfect partner for ECA (or electrochemically activated) cleaning systems such as Robert Scott’s Toucan range, which effectively cleans surfaces and protects them from bacterial infection using a non-toxic, environmentally-friendly and cost-effective solution of water and salt. This is the main reason why it has become a mainstay for industrial warehouse cleaning companies in Brisbane. The results speaks for themselves.

Microfibre does a fantastic job at quickly and effectively removing dirt and grease from a myriad of surfaces. However, there is still some confusion as to the exact properties and capabilities of the fibre and how best to capitalise on its many uses.

Microfibre cloths and mops have a completely different structure to classic woven cloths. They are made from composite synthetic fibres, which are much finer than other textiles so have more fibres per cloth. In addition, the individual microfibres are engineered to create a very large surface area per fibre and are naturally statically charged so that they have a strong suction effect. In other words, they collect as much dirt as possible in just one wipe, even from the smallest surface crevices inaccessible to conventional cloth fibres.

Designed to be used dry or damp, with your chosen solution – either water or chemical – microfibre cloths should not be used in situations where biocides would normally be considered essential. And bleach will degrade the microfibres so should be avoided.

Trials carried out have constantly indicated that microfibre woven cloths consistently outperform traditional cloths in terms of their ability to remove dirt, grease and bacteria from a variety of surfaces, making them an excellent product for both commercial and domestic cleaning.

Top tips when considering microfibre products:

  • They are extremely durable and highly resistant to tearing and snagging, so can be a more cost-effective cleaning cloth than traditional cloths and mops.
  • They have a very low level of linting and short pile cloths leave no ‘fluffy’ deposits so work well on high gloss or reflective surfaces such as metal and mirrors.
  • Microfibre cloths DO NOT perform well on old, damaged surfaces where fibres can become snagged in surface defects.
  • Microfibre requires less water and chemicals making it cost-effective and beneficial to the environment. It is extremely absorbent, attracting seven times its own weight in liquid. They are easy to clean, quick to dry and can be washed many times over.
  • Microfibre is also NOT suitable for cleaning up bodily fluids, or in environmentally sensitive areas where biocides are usually essential.
  • Though microfibre doesn’t kill bacteria, it effectively lifts and removes 99.9% of anything that is on a surface.