We are taught the importance of washing your hands at a young age. We suds up to shed dirt, grime, and germs. We can see and feel the clean from dirt and grime, but how do we know it is doing good work at reducing the chance of contracting and spreading a virus?
Photo - Work Up a Lather and Wash for 20 Seconds or More
We feel really comfortable with soap formulation and function, but when it came to viruses, we wanted to do a little extra digging to be sure our B&B community had accurate and well-resourced info.
Here is what we know;
Basic Soap Function; soap is a surfactant (surface active agent) that, at the molecular level, has an oil or fat loving end and a water loving end. This is important for bathing because our skin is coated with a layer of naturally protective liquid fats (sebum) that act as humectant (moisture retention barrier) for our skin. So the oil/fat loving end of soap attaches to our sebum, and the water loving end to the water, effectively mixing oil and water and washing away excess oils and surface layers of dirt and grime.
and what we found out;
Two Reasons Soap Help Stop the Spread of Viruses; The first is that viruses have a fatty lipid bilayer (outer layer) that dissolves when it comes in contact with a surfactant (soap). The soap literally breaks down the coating and the virus falls apart! The second reason is that the fatty bilayer embeds itself in our own sebum, which we already know rinses away when washing with soap. It's a one-two punch for all viruses.
What is more effective, bar or liquid?
We are biased, so we are relying on the information shared in this breakdown by the Office for Science and Society from McGill University. In summary, there is NO difference in effectiveness between a bar and a liquid soap. With no difference in effectiveness, and we may be biased, but we think bar soaps are the hands down favourite because;
- bar soaps are actively used while cleaning, rinsing away impurities and leaving the bar and skin nice and clean;
- liquid soaps are most often detergents, not surfactants, that strip your hands of moisture and result in the dry and chapped hands so many are suffering with right now.
Why We Raise The Bar
On top of the reasons above, our bar soaps leave hands with more moisture (reducing chapping), have a lower carbon footprint, are plastic-free, are as much as 8x more efficient in their use of raw materials, and are handcrafted with essential oils and simple ingredients found in nature. For us, the decision is always an easy one!
We hope you feel more informed about your bar soaps. No matter what you choose for your hand washing, just be sure to wash frequently, for 20 seconds or more, with soap, and help to limit the spread when viruses are around.