Are Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soaps Hurting You?


Do you choose your liquid hand soap based on design of your bathroom décor? Or do you choose them just because you have watched an advertisement of your favourite celeb promoting it? Well, if this is the case then this article may change the way to look at liquid hand soaps.

76% of liquid hand soap contains anti-bacterial elements according to Dr. Eli Perencevich, an infectious diseases researcher at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. “There has been no scientific data published to support the claim that adding these compounds to household products prevents infection,” Perencevich says. The word antibacterial makes you feel at ease as it conveys ‘protection against bacterial cold or flu’s’. This is the reason why many people blindly pick up such liquid hand soap without even realizing the fact. But do you know that colds and flu causing agents are viruses and anti-bacterial soaps have no effect on them?

What are Antibacterial Soaps?

A commonly used anti-bacterial chemical is triclosan – a suspected immunotoxin and a skin or sense organ toxin. About 75 percent of liquid antibacterial soaps and 30 percent of bars use a chemical called triclosan as an active ingredient.

“Antibacterial products are no more effective than soap and water, and could be dangerous” said US FDA.

Scientists are worried about the pervasive use of anti-bacterial hand soap. Excessive usage of triclosan may cause development of bacteria that will only be killed by stronger doses of chemicals. Hence, killing harmful bacteria’s, like strep and e-coli may become more difficult.

6 Shocking Facts about Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soaps

1. Kills Useful Bacteria

As anti-bacterial hand soap cannot discriminate between beneficial and bad bacterial they kill both useful and harmful bacteria. This has made us more exposed to harmful bacteria. Moreover constant use of disinfecting agents tends to disrupt the normal bacteria that help in invading pathogens.

2. No Health Benefits

“As mentioned in the announcement, 42 years of FDA research—along with countless independent studies—have produced no evidence that triclosan provides any health benefits as compared to old-fashioned soap.”

3. May Create Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria.

“Resistant bacteria result from long-term use at low-level concentrations, a condition that occurs when consumer use residue-producing agents such as triclosan and triclocarban. Additional experiments found that some bacteria can combat triclosan and other biocides with export systems that could also pump out antibiotics. It was demonstrated that these triclosan-resistant mutants were also resistant to several antibiotics. Resistance to antibacterial soaps has been found where these agents are used continuously (hospital and food industry).” Source: Tufts

4. May act as Endocrine Disruptors/EDS

“A new study shows that a common antibacterial chemical added to bath soaps is an endocrine disruptor that can alter hormonal activity in rats and in human cells in the laboratory — and does so by a previously unreported mechanism. Called endocrine disruptors, or endocrine disrupting substances (EDS), such chemicals have been linked in animal studies to a variety of problems, including cancer, reproductive failure and developmental anomalies.” Source: sciencedaily

5. The Soaps Might Lead To Other Health Problems

Allergies, thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption, weight gain, inflammatory responses are some of the harmful effects of triclosan. There’s evidence that children with prolonged exposure to triclosan have a higher chance of developing allergies and hay fever. Scientists speculate all these problems in children may be a result of reduced exposure to bacteria. You may be surprised to know that this exposure is necessary for proper immune system development.

6. Antibacterial soaps are bad for the environment

As people are unknowingly using a lot of triclosan through hand soap, triclosan’s are entering the environment and causing great damage to it.

What Should You Do?

Organic Hand Wash From Bufin
Organic Hand Wash From Bufin

Go for liquid hand soap manufactured using natural ingredient and is biodegradable, like Bufin. Bufin is an organic liquid hand soap manufacturing company that don’t contain any triclosan. Bufin liquid hand soap ensures effective, bubbly hand wash leaving a lingering fragrance behind. They use 100% natural coconut oil to moisturise your hand after washing. Also they are totally biodegradable.