Share This Post

Health / Lifestyle

Know your Hand Wash liquid

Know your Hand Wash liquid

At one time, glycerin based toilet soaps were mostly used at restaurants, toilets and other similar private and public places to wash hand. They are practically replaced by the Hand Wash liquid soaps of various brands owing to the convenience in usage as well as keeping the dispensers and wash basins clean. The hand wash liquid soaps contain a number of ingredients used as detergents, surfactants, preservatives, perfumes etc. Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) or Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) are the most common ingredients found in Soaps, Shampoos, Toothpaste, Hand Wash liquids, Deodorants, Dish Wash liquids etc. Another prominent one is Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate (ALS) solution.

SLES is a very inexpensive and effective foaming agent. Sodium Pareth Sulfate is also used along with other ingredients. They are all surfactants having good cleaning and emulsifying properties. Check your items and you can see along with other components, these three (one or more) are present in soaps, shampoos, toothpaste, hand wash liquid, deodorant, dish wash liquid that you commonly use. SLES and SLS are derivatives of Palm Kernel Oil or Coconut Oil.

Not all of the ingredients are safe, while the degree of danger/hazard varies from product to product and person to person depending upon the concentration of the ingredients and their side effects. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) report mentions that both Sodium and Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate “Appear to be safe in formulations designed for discontinuous, brief use followed by thorough rinsing from the surface of the skin”. ALS, SLS and SLES are reported to produce Skin Irritation as well as serious Eye Irritation and hence products containing them should be handled and used very carefully.

Another ingredient is Methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCI) which is classified as a preservative, active against bacteria, yeast and fungi. This is also used in the manufacture of water-based cosmetics and personal care products. Reports show that as an ingredient in cosmetics, MCI has been associated with allergic reactions. Since 1990, it has been largely removed from majority of cosmetic products but still used in rinse-off products at a much lower concentration.

A report at WebMD ( shows that Hand Wash liquids could show side effects as follows.

RARE side effects

If experienced, these tend to have a Severe expression

  • A Significant Type Of Allergic Reaction Called Anaphylaxis
  • A Type Of Allergic Reaction Called Angioedema
  • Fast Heartbeat
  • Hives
  • Low Blood Pressure
  • Puffy Face From Water Retention
  • Trouble Breathing
  • Wheezing

If experienced, these tend to have a Less Severe expression

  • A Skin Rash
  • Contact Dermatitis, A Type Of Skin Rash That Occurs From Contact With An Offending Substance
  • Erythema Or Skin Redness
  • Skin Irritation

We are lured by the advertisements and recommendations by our peer to try various products without knowing their hidden danger. The chemicals in your hand wash can be more harmful than the bacteria they kill. Use them wisely.

Pin it for later

Hand Wash

Share This Post

Born and brought up in Kerala, I did my schooling in Kerala and graduated (B.Sc Physics) from the Calicut University. I have worked with a Swedish Company from 1994 to 2015, as a Senior Project Manager in their Group IT Division in Dubai. This blog is the result of my strong desire to communicate with others, sharing what I know and what I could gather from various sources.


Thank you for visiting this page. As you may notice there are some links on this page that redirects you to another website. These links are affiliate links which means that if you click on one of these links and purchase/sign up for that item/service I will receive a small commission from that purchase at no added cost to you. I have only shared links to those products that I would use personally. The money that I earn through this method is just a small income to help me continue my blog through which I want to help enlighten you all on various topics. I am extremely grateful to you if you choose to purchase any of the items through the affiliate links on this page.

Leave a Reply