Last Updated on June 25, 2019
Earlier this year I read an interesting piece about how one of the biggest reasons that humans live longer now is not so much because of medicine as it is sanitation. In other words, while antibiotics and surgery and heart medication are all important, they’re not the biggest reason human life expectancy has improved. It’s because of sanitation: clean water, sewer systems, and better hygiene.
That’s one reason why the small act of hand washing can make such a big difference. It helps to prevent us from picking up harmful pathogens from uncooked meat, remove all the things we might have picked up touching keyboards or shaking hands, and also helps keep us from spreading what we’ve got to other people.
Soap is a key part of good hand washing. Soap helps to loosen bacteria and other pathogens and, combined with clean water, is a first-line protection against disease.
A lot of stores sell soap. Dollar Tree is one of them.
Klar and Danver Liquid Hand Soap comes in various forms. I took a look at the 23-ounce bottle, which can be used to refill soap dispensers. Like everything at Dollar Tree, it costs $1.
The bottle is easy to open and easy to pour, with a small spout at the top to prevent spilling. The “apple fields” version I tested certainly smells the part.
Like most soaps, you simply apply it, build up a foam, and then rinse. It seemed to do the job fine, although it did dry my hands out a little. More on this in just a moment.
One of the top ingredients in the Klar and Danver is sodium laureth sulfate, a soap-like substance that helps to foam and remove organisms exactly the way soap does. It also contains sodium chloride — salt — which is both antiseptic and acts as a thickening agent in soap. The salt can also dry hands out, so, regardless of what the packaging says, you may need lotion after using the soap.
As for the other ingredients? Depends on your sensitivities and convictions. This is a pretty textbook generic soap, so if you’re looking for something really natural, this probably isn’t it. But if it’s more about getting an inexpensive cleaning agent, this is more like it.
One reminder: pay attention to the expiration date on the bottle. Soap can become contaminated with bacteria over time, which can reduce its effects and actually make it worse than washing with regular water. So keep that in mind.
If you’re looking for a generic soap for refilling your home pumps, this isn’t a bad option. It’s cheap, easy to use, and has the ingredients of a run-of-the-mill liquid soap. It can dry hands a little bit, so don’t assume the “moisturizes” part of the label is altogether accurate, but other than that it seems to get the job done. Just don’t neglect the expiration date.