I keep an old kitchen towel nearby that I can use to wipe various messes (shisha juice, coal dust etc.) off my hands and the little wood table I use to hold my supplies during the session. I also use 2 aluminum pie plates during the session. 1 that I transport my hot coals from outside (for QL's) or the kitchen (for Exotica's). I also use the same pie plate for to ash my coals during my session. The second pie plate I use for junk produced during the session. Hot ash, straw pieces (from making the homemade diffuser), foil, used shisha, and I drown my coals in it. That way the ashtray on my hookah doesn't get to messed up. Makes clean up afterwards quicker and easier.
I also have all my supplies organized and next to my relaxing chair, so when it's time for a session everything is in easy reach.
I think the gloves are a good idea too.