Holiday Hand Hygiene: Share Moments, Not Germs

Contributed by BSM Staff

AKRON, OH -- The holiday season is a special time to gather with family and friends. However, our heightened awareness of harmful germs due to the COVID-19 pandemic has given many people one more thing to worry about this holiday season.

“No one has the time or wants to be sick, especially over the holidays,” said Dawn Yeomans, Ph.D. “By following a few basic tips in key situations, you and your family and friends can reduce your chance of missing a single special moment of the season.” 

Yeomans is part of the PURELL Brand team that specializes in hygiene sciences. Their expertise in how harmful germs can be spread is an important part of what makes PURELL Hand Sanitizer America’s number one hand sanitizer and contributed to the successful launch of PURELL Disinfectant Spray and Wipes.

To kill illness-causing germs this season, Yeomans recommends focusing on these key situations:
1.   Preparing food. It’s essential to wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before, during, and after preparing food, as well as after handling raw meats and produce. Also, make sure to disinfect any surfaces that come in contact with raw food ingredients. These are easy ways to prevent germs and bacteria from contaminating your kitchen and prepared foods – and in turn, anyone who eats that food.

2.   Catching up with friends at a restaurant. Don’t forget to clean your hands before you eat. You can also use hand sanitizer after giving the menu back to the server and using communal items like the ketchup bottle.

3.   Heading out to do some holiday shopping. Leave the germs behind. Whether heading to the mall, local retail store, or grocery store, don’t forget to bring hand sanitizer and use it upon entering and exiting the store. This helps stop germs from coming into the store and from you carrying them home.

4.   Traveling to visit family and friends. A portable-size hand sanitizer is the perfect travel companion for road trips, flights, or a ride-share to a party. Use hand sanitizer after touching frequently touched surfaces like gas pumps, door handles, handrails, seat belts, and electronic screens, and after going through airport security. If you’re flying, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is currently allowing one hand sanitizer container up to 12 ounces per passenger in carry-on bags.

5.   Hosting a holiday party. Promote good hand hygiene by placing hand sanitizer bottles near where food is being served and eaten. Consider leaving a canister of surface disinfecting wipes in spaces like the bathroom for your germ-conscious guests. Also, remember to disinfect frequently touched surfaces before and after the party – think doorknobs, handrails, light switches, refrigerator handles, countertops, tables, and remote controls. 

“Although they may look similar, not all hand sanitizers are the same,” cautioned Yeomans. “More people trust PURELL Hand Sanitizer because it’s made with high-quality, safe ingredients and is rigorously tested. It’s a small but important way to show your friends and family you care about them.”

For more on hand hygiene, go to