Hand Hygiene Products

Cuticura are a well known brand who have been associated with anti-bacterial products for many years.  One of their newest products is the Cuticura Crackling Hand Hygiene Mousse.

The onset of winter brings an increase in coughs and colds and other illnesses which are easily spread.  Last winter also brought the increased worry of swine flu.  Worrying about all of these cases of infection alerted many people to the idea of increased hand-hygiene and caused a massive increase in the number of anti-bacterial hand cleaners being sold. 

 The current selling price for the Cuticura Carckling Hand Hygiene Mousse is  £3.45 for 50ml on Boots.com.

Unlike most antibacterial hand cleansers this hand mouse is presented in a pressurised can, about 11cm tall with a lid.  It is mainly coloured in blue, in keeping with the Cuticura range but in red writing it claims to kill 99.99% of bacteria fast.  There is, however, no mention of anti-viral properties.  It suggests that it is ideal for the family, for eating out and as a convenient way to cleanse the hands when you have no access to water.  It states that the hands will be left cool, clean and refreshed without stickiness.

To use the product you have to give the can a quick shake and then apply a small amount onto dry hands and then rub all over the hands.  This seemed perfectly straightforward so I gave the product a try.  The lid came off easily so I then pushed down on the top of the aerosol.  Immediately white foam was emitted from the can with a rather bizarre crackling noise, it felt mildly tingly on the skin and then it started to turn into liquid very quickly.  This is when I realise that I was struggling as I still had the lid in one hand and it was obvious that I was going to have to rub the product in quickly so I had to drop the lid in my bag and rub my hands together before the product evaporated.   The lid has proved a problem where-ever I use this.  If I am in a public toilet with poor washing facilities it is great to have this sort of thing to hand but I always have to find somewhere to put the silly lid.  I think that the gel products with a push-down, self-sealing lid are a much more practical design.

The crackling sensation may appeal to children and might be helpful if they don’t like washing their hands when out and about.

 The foam rubbed in very quickly, possible too quickly as I wasn’t sure that I had covered all of my hands so I ended up putting more on to make sure.  The manufacturers claim that this mousse has a cooling effect, it felt cool as it first hit my skin but there was not really much of a cooling effect once I was rubbing it in, the cooling effect is from the evaporation of the alcohol so I would have expected it to be more pronounced.

The product has quite a strong smell that was not particularly pleasant.  It smelt of cheap aftershave so even after it was rubbed into the hands it could  still smell it for about 10 minutes.   The smell would certainly discourage me from using it prior to eating if I was out as  it would taint anything that you held in your hand.

The skin on my hands was not irritated by this product at all.  In fact my hands felt comfortable and soft after use and I didn’t experience any drying either. 

Having this sort of product in your handbag is useful.  You should not be paranoid about germs but there are some occasions when it is just handy to be able to freshen your hands or those of your children.  This is an extremely expensive product and the gels are better value, the selling point is the Crackling idea but that just sounds weird and feels a little bit odd when you first spray it but disappears quickly.  The smell is very overpowering, there are plenty of things on the market that do the same job but are easier to use and smell much less offensive.