I guess we have kind of highjacked this threat and got off on gloves and smoke. Sorry.
I don't think I would have had the nerve to go gloveless but i got the idea to spray my hands with Fischer's Bee Quick first, thinking the girls would not want to go near my hands. It seemed to work fine but JP got all over me and said I shouldn't spray my hands with that stuff, but by that time I had gone gloveless twice and got over the fear of it so kept doing it without the Bee Quick. But I do "smoke" my hands quite a bit, and certainly I smoke'em if I get a sting some place. I usually get stung once or twice, depending on how long I am in my hives, but I don't really mind a couple of stings. It is probably good for me.
As to smoking, if I am going in real quick, like I did in a nuc today, i use Optima in some sugar water and spray that. Says it is supposed to calm the girls and keep them from flying. And now that I have a couple of nearly filled honey suppers, I don't want to smoke the honey, so I use the Optima when I am taking off the top and checking to see if the frames are capped.