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Why washing your hands with soap and water is your first line of defence against Coronavirus.

April 9, 2020

 

Government advice is to wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds to help stop the spread of Covid19 during the Coronavirus pandemic. 

It's simple advice but is it too simplistic?  Can washing your hands really stop the spread of the virus? or do we need something a lot stronger like antibacterial hand wash or hand sanitiser. 

The answer to those questions lies in how the most viruses are made up not just Covid19. Viruses consist of three key building blocks: ribonucleic acid (RNA), proteins and lipids.  Lipids is just another name for fat. If you've ever washed your dishes in the sink with Fairy liquid (or any washing-up liquid) you'll know what detergent does to fat and it's exactly the same with the virus. 

Detergent is just another name for soap and it literally melts away the fatty lipids that holds the virus together so it breaks apart and becomes inactive. Therefore, it is really important to use hand wash or any other type of soap.

If you're struggling to find hand wash or have seen the price of basic hand washes skyrocket as greedy entrepreneurs exploit the current situation to make a fast profit, then you'll be pleased to know you can also use shower gel, bubble bath or the traditional bar of soap. It isn't necessary to use special hand wash labelled antibacterial as all soap is antibacterial providing it is used correctly. 

The government recommend we wash our hands for 20 seconds but why? There's no magic formula that means after 20 seconds the virus dies, it is simply that is how long is estimated it would take to wash every surface on your hands. It's more important to make sure the palms, backs, between the fingers and thumb and wrists are all washed thoroughly. 

 

 



The virus is thought to survive upto 3 days on hard surfaces outside the human body which means that if someone who is infected with Coronavirus touches something, and you touched it after them, potentially the virus could have transferred onto your hands. If you were then to touch your face or eyes, the virus could then enter your body and start to multiply so you become infected too. If, however, you wash your hands between touching anything that could have potentially been touched by someone else you break the chain and the transfer cannot take place. 

Avon has a range of toiletry products which includes hand wash, shower gel, bubble baths and shampoo, and prices range from £1 to £2.50. With shipping starting at £2.50 and becoming free over £15 it can be a lot cheaper than shopping elsewhere online and could mean that trip to the supermarket for these ever so essential hygiene products becomes unnecessary. You'll find the full range in our shop...just search hand wash.

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