PPE Supplies: What Do You Need & Where Do You Get It?

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Better MRO Administrator
PPE Supplies: What Do You Need & Where Do You Get It?

Personal Protective Equipment

There are many new guidelines out there.  How are you determining the proper PPE products needed to keep you and/or your employees safe and compliant?  Check out some helpful resources below:

MSC COVID-19 Response Page

MSC Essential Products Page

PPE Selection: Find The Right Type of Respirator

Not All White Suits Are The Same - Are Your Workers Over- or  Under-Protected?

Share with us! What are your biggest challenges so far?

Elisa H.'s picture
Elisa H.
MSC Moderator

Creating a safe work environment is a critical component of reopening the businesses that support our country. Using OSHA's Three Lines of Defense, MSC can assist in your preparations for safely reopening or ramping up production.

Third Line of Defense: Personal Protective Equipment

Personal Protective Equipment is used as the last line of defense against hazards that cannot be eliminated or controlled. PPE is application specific, and MSC is here to help you choose the correct personal protective equipment. Shop our PPE selection today:


James D.'s picture
James D.
MSC Moderator

When selecting a respirator, it’s important to know the different types available and the purposes of each. Respirators fall into two main categories: filtering and air supplying. Filtering respirators use filters to prevent airborne particles from reaching the employee’s nose and lungs. Air supply systems provide clean outside air directly to the user, so that no contaminated air is breathed in.

Within those two subcategories, a respirator can be classified as tight-fitting or loose-fitting. A tight-fitting respirator creates a seal around the user’s nose and mouth, or around the entire face. A loose-fitting respirator is designed so that it does not depend on a tight seal to protect the user.

A common term for a filtering facepiece half-mask respirator, N95 is a tight-fitting, air-purifying respirator made of filtration material covering the nose and mouth. An N95 may have an exhalation valve to make it easier to exhale. This type of respirator filters out particles but doesn’t protect against gases or vapors. It is typically disposed of after a single use.

Other respirator types include:

Half-facepiece Elastomeric – This tight-fitting, air-purifying respirator consists of a rubber or silicone facepiece that covers the nose and mouth. It uses replaceable filters for particulates, or cartridges or canisters to protect against gases and vapors. An elastomeric half-facepiece respirator can be cleaned, decontaminated and reused.

Full-facepiece Elastomeric – This type of respirator provides better protection than a half-facepiece respirator because it is easier to create a seal around the entire face. It can also protect against liquid splashes and vapors that could irritate the eyes.

PAPR – A powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) is a loose-fitting device with a blower that pulls air through attached filters. The blower then pushes the filtered air into the facepiece, which covers all of the user’s face. There are also tight-fitting, full-facepiece PAPRs, which come with an elastomeric facepiece made of rubber or silicone, as well as half-mask PAPRs.

Airline respirator – This type of respirator supplies clean air to either a hood or a facepiece through a long hose, from a source of clean air such as a cylinder or compressor.

SCBA – A self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) provides clean air from a compressed air tank mounted on the user’s back or belt directly to a tight-fitting, full-face elastomeric facepiece. An SCBA provides workers with the highest level of protection.

Different types of respirators provide different levels of protection, and each class is labeled by OSHA with an APF. The larger the APF, the greater the level of protection, so an APF of 10 will reduce exposure to 1/10th the concentration of the contaminant in the air, while an APF of 50 will reduce exposure to 1/50th the concentration.

Definitely check out more of our resources on Respirator protection on Better MRO.

And for assistance in selecting the right PPE for your needs, also be sure to utilize our PPE Product Selectors.






Elisa H.'s picture
Elisa H.
MSC Moderator

Good point, James, about the Safety Product Selector. Here's a video to show how easy it is to use (featuring Lockout Tagout for demonstration purposes.)


To check out the calculator and all of its usues, visit the link.


Erin Robb

Hello Sales,


My name is Erin Robb, with Ohio University. My institution is in need to  purchase Nitrile Gloves and would like to have someone contact me to communicate.


Best regards.

Erin Robb

Procurement Manager

Ohio University

95 Richland Ave

Convocation Center S121,

Athens, OH 45701



Better MRO Admi...
Better MRO Administrator

Hello Erin - Please contact our customer service team and someone will be able to help with a nitrile glove order. The number is 1-800-645-7270.


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