When I spend one day away from home, the skin on my hands dries out. Hand sanitizers are prolific within the world that I travel but I refuse to use those. I choose to not overwash my hands but will wash with soap and water in each washroom that I happen to frequent. Typically, that soap is only a fraction better.
Or is it?
Why is it that soaps take an extraordinary amount of water to wash off? Why do such substances need to be included in their chemical make-up? Many studies and tests have been done to allow such soaps to hit the market conveying a message to the consumer that they must be fine, but all one has to do is wash out a water bottle with traditional dish soap to know how much water it takes to get the residue from the bottle.
Sodium Lauryl Sulphate is the key ingredient that is damaging and yet found in many cleaning products, and, to a lesser degree, in much of the make-up that we wear. Mainstream supporters of this compound like a good lather and there is no question that it rids floors, dishes etc. of grease and oily products. I’ve read articles that talk about how it may penetrate beyond the surface of the skin and how researchers use it to irritate skin and then test ways to heal it but I’ve also read pieces on how, when used in small amounts, there is no need to be alarmed. My hands tell me the story that makes sense to me and it only takes one day back at home with my sulphate-free soaps, for my hands to be well again.