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Don’t Let Bad Hand Sanitizer Ruin Your Clean Image

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Jim Arbogast, Ph.D., and Michael Herbkersman of GOJO share three critical guidelines for choosing the right hand sanitizer.

Health clubs and hand sanitizer both play an essential role in the well-being of a community. Yet not all health clubs or hand sanitizers are created equal.

Every decision you make as a club operator and every amenity you offer plays an important role in attracting and retaining members. In the last couple years, however, a surplus of low-cost, low-quality and sometimes dangerous hand sanitizer products have flooded the market. Although it might initially seem like an easy box to check as a club operator, the hand sanitizer you provide to your members can make all the difference in what they perceive as a clean and comfortable workout experience.

At some point in recent memory, most people have probably experienced an unlabeled jug of smelly, slimy and generally unpleasant hand sanitizer at a grocery store, restaurant or other public space. It’s important as a club owner to think back to that experience and decide if your members deserve better between workouts.

In addition to the obviously poor aesthetics, a recent study found many of these products contain low alcohol content, incorrect or inaccurate labeling, and sometimes even toxic ingredients. In fact, the FDA recalled a number of hand sanitizers, which can be found on their website at fda.gov/handsanitizerlist.

Three Critical Guidelines for Choosing the Right Hand Sanitizer

1. Choose a product that is in its original packaging with appropriate and accurate labeling. This includes the product name, drug facts, ingredients, lot number and manufacturer contact information. Aside from this being a legal requirement, members deserve to know what they’re using on their hands.

2. Choose alcohol-based hand sanitizers that are packaged in “sanitary-sealed” dispenser refills, which are sealed and locked at the factory. Avoid “topping off” or refilling bottles and dispensers with a “bulk” or open-refillable design intended to use with any/many products — like gallon-style jugs of hand sanitizer, for example. This will absolutely lead to the mixing of various products and create the risk of contamination, loss of product effectiveness, inaccurate labeling and poor member experience at your fitness facility.

3. Stick with well-known, proven brands that are produced by reputable manufacturers. Reputable manufacturers of high-quality hand sanitizer are fully stocked and ready to ship the brands members know, trust and enjoy using.

Why It Matters

Good hygiene and cleanliness will be embedded in the health and fitness industry forever. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are the gold standard for hand hygiene as recommended by the CDC and WHO. They remain a critically important tool to reduce germs on hands in everyday life. As a club operator, you work hard around the clock to provide your members with a clean, comfortable workout experience. It’s vital to make sure the hygiene products you buy and provide for your members to use at your fitness facility reinforce all the hard work they are doing by providing a safe, high-quality club environment for them to workout in.

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