Comparison of EN388 and ANSI/ISEA 105 Cut Resistance Tests

There are several factors to consider when choosing the right protective gloves. Job hazards, dexterity requirements, durability, grip, comfort, and cut resistance.

Unfortunately, cut resistance is the hardest to compare and can make choosing the right glove a bit confusing.

There are many standards and methods used to measure the cut resistance of gloves, but the two most common are European standard EN388 and North American ANSI/ISEA 105. Both standards use a scale of 1 to 5, but test methods mean that the scales cannot be easily related.

Looking for the best hand protection against cuts? Check out our line of quality cut resistant gloves!

EN388 standard test

The EN388 standard uses a Coup test in which a circular blade is moved back and forth over a fabric sample. The blade has a fixed load (5N) and rotates in the opposite direction to the linear motion. Fabrics are rated by how many repeated cuts in the same position are required to cut the fabric, with a rating of 5 being the most resistant.

It is important to note that the coup test was first developed when resistant materials were limited to cotton, leather, and nylon. When testing modern, highly cut-resistant fabrics, circular blades can dull resulting in inconsistent and inaccurate results.

ANSI/ISEA 105 standard test

The ANSI standard uses the CPP/TDM test method. It is thus measured by the amount of pressure that can be applied to the straightedge blade as it moves over the fabric in one direction. Continue to increase pressure until the blade cuts through the fabric sample. Similar to the EN388 standard, a score of 5 on the ANSI scale represents the most tolerant.

The ANSL scale is widely recognized to provide a higher level of resistance than the equivalent EN388 rating.


Standards Australia has adopted the EN388 coup test for use here in Australia. However, this criterion is a recommendation, not a requirement. The use of standards is self-regulated, certification is not mandatory, and testing often lacks independence.

Here at Elliott, we offer standard quality cut resistant gloves that ensure superior protection from cuts in the workplace. View our range – Here.


If you would like to learn more about our safety products or need expert advice on safety gear that suits your needs, feel free to contact Elliott Australia. We are happy to help!call me 07 3265 2944 Or send us a message – Here.

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