Chemical loaded handwashes and soap bars flooded in the market tagged as 99percent bacteria free is adding up new health concerns which many common people aren’t aware of.
The year 2008 marked as the International year of sanitation. On the same year Global Handwashing Day was announced on 15 October. Every year this day is dedicated to make handwashing a habit. However, Hand hygiene came to highlight after Covid-19 pandemic. WHO recommends soap and water-based hand washing, three times each day as standard for hygiene.
Products for hand hygiene have changed over time from soap bars to liquid handwashes to hand sanitizers and so is their manufacturing ingredients. Old times natural origin hand washes made of soil, ashes or neem extract evolved to today’s chemical based handwashes which are extended far beyond fats and bases. Some of these chemicals are triclosan, sodium lauryl sulphate, parabens etc. are widely used. Recent ban on 19 such harmful chemicals are still misused on many beauty platforms.
The ‘trade secret’ of companies are patented fragrance ingredients that FDA have given freedom of not disclosing it publicly. These artificial fragrances may have over 200 chemicals which may trans dermally get into bloodstream and may cause hormonal disruption, allergies and strong fragrance may cause migraines and headaches to sensitive consumers.
Parabens typically found in handwashes are endocrine disrupting chemicals which lead to early onset of puberty, reproductive difficulties and increasing fat deposits.
Sulfates such as sodium lauryl sulphates and sodium laurate sulphate are carcinogenic, also cause dermatitis and allergies.
Triclosan chemical found in over 2000 products and almost 75percent of liquid washes around the world is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. This chemical is so toxic that it is carried through placenta from mother to child in womb.
The market supplies this chemical loaded soap bars and liquid washes at much cheaper rate with the concern of maintaining healthy hygienic routine among common people all over the world while the paraben, SLS and other chemical free products are much costlier that it lands only in the budget of few groups of population.