Coveralls and Aprons

Coveralls are used as protective outer garments, particularly against chemicals. The chemical label or MSDS should be consulted to determine the proper type of coverall. Disposable coveralls are common and come in various grades depending on the level of protection needed. The most common material for disposable coveralls is Tyvek, a fabric made by DuPont. Ordinary Tyvek or its equivalent will normally protect against dry chemicals. Tyvek is not considered waterproof and therefore offers limited spray or splash protection. Coated or laminated Tyvek or its equivalent or polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is needed when more hazardous chemicals are used. Some circumstances require a complete protective suit, including a hood and gloves (1).

There is a difference between a coverall that is liquid resistant and one that is liquid-proof. Coveralls made from liquid-resistant materials can still allow liquids to enter through the seams. A liquid-proof coverall has sealed seams to prevent penetration (1).

Aprons are generally used when mixing chemicals to guard against direct splashes of concentrate against the torso. Aprons are commonly made of nitrile, PVC, or other resistant materials and are less likely to be considered a disposable item, although some disposable aprons are available.

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