Really??? I can’t believe the hundreds of places signs just like this have appeared over the past year. It has gone as far as billboards along highways advertising hand washing to prime-time news anchors devoting entire segments on the do’s and don’ts of hand washing. Was no one washing their hands prior to the pandemic? This is just basic personal hygiene that every single human should be doing multiple times per day for multiple reasons. And if you aren’t that’s gross and the exact reason viruses spread. Personally, seeing these signs EVERYWHERE makes me wonder what businesses, its employees its customers and just humans in general were doing prior to the pandemic. I even question if I want to continue giving my business to places that are only now stressing the importance of personal hygiene.
If you are potty training a toddler than maybe the “Rinse-Lather-Repeat” mantra or singing the Happy Birthday song twice through are useful teaching methods to ensure children learn and apply personal hygiene. But we are not toddlers! And as adults you need to go bury your head in the sand somewhere if you need guidance on hand washing. I can appreciate the increase in readily available hand sanitizer at cash registers, gas pumps, gyms, etc. And I fully understand the health department requirements for hand washing signage to be visible in all public restrooms and kitchens of establishments preparing food, but those requirements have always been there. It’s this newfound need to wash your hands and the need to make it seem like some glorified action that irritates me. You should always wash your hands! As a collective, we should be embarrassed the basics of personal hygiene have been ignored for so long that we are now relying on the nightly news to detail the importance of washing your hands.
I personally wash my hands frequently throughout each day for multiple reasons and that frequency is the exact same today as it was prior to the pandemic. I also never touch my face with my hands regardless of how clean they are. As a teenage girl learning to wear makeup, I was taught to never touch my face. For two reasons, you’ll mess up your makeup (😊) and any oil or dirt that may be on your hands will transfer to your face, leading to acne or transferring germs directly to your face or mouth. And for both reasons, I committed to never touching my face.
Please do yourself (and the rest of us) a favor and take care of yourself. Go back to the basics of self-care and understand the importance of personal hygiene. It should not take a fancy, new sign in your local coffee shop or your celebrity crush during the next commercial break stressing the importance of hand washing. This isn’t a new concept. This should be ingrained common sense in all of us. The need for proper hand washing will never go out of style or lessen as the risk of exposure to COVID-19 lessens. This is a practice that every human should do multiple times per day regardless of any outside circumstance.