How does Carex work?

Whether you’re out exploring nature or at home building a den, with Carex, you and your little ones will have clean, cared-for hands that are ready for anything.

Washing handsHow does Carex hand wash work?

Carex antibacterial hand wash contains a combination of ingredients designed to remove and kill bacteria that have found their way onto your hands. Carex works in two different ways – by removing bacteria in the act of hand washing and through its antibacterial action.

Antibacterial action

The skin on your hands is naturally acidic, between pH4 and pH6, and this natural acidity is your skin’s way of keeping bacteria in check. The ingredients found in Carex hand wash mimic the body’s own acidity regulation which helps it to kill bacteria.

The mild detergents that are also found in Carex hand wash will then help to wash away dirt and bacteria when used with hot water and rubbing your hands together.

The whole process relies on you washing your hands thoroughly. By rubbing your hands together with Carex hand wash and warm water, the tiny bits of grease, fat and dirt on your hands, that bacteria cling to, are broken down and rinse off.

How long does it take to kill bacteria?

During on-going research into hand hygiene, our experts have found that some hand washes can take up to 5 minutes to kill bacteria. However our experts are confident that, if you wash your hands correctly with Carex, it will kill 99.9% of bacteria in just seconds. That's pretty fast, though how long they remain clean afterwards is even harder to answer and nobody really knows. As long as you regularly wash your hands, you can be sure you'll get rid of any unpleasant bacteria.

BacteriaKills 99.9% of bacteria

We’re proud that Carex kills 99.9% of bacteria. But how do we know?

Testing is in fact very simple. We put a large number of bacteria into a solution of Carex and then we take a sample of the solution, after a set time. We then test this sample to see how many bacteria are left, so if we were to introduce one million bacteria and after a certain time only 100 are alive, we know we’ve killed over 99.9%.

What about the other 0.01%?

We will never be able to know if we have killed 100% of bacteria because in line with the British Standard method of testing, we test a sample and not the whole solution and therefore cannot claim 100% bacteria kill rate.


Hands Up For Hygiene


Hands Up For Hygiene logo

Our schools programme, helping school kids learn how, when and why they need to wash their hands.

Did you know?

  • "Handwashing is one of the most important ways of preventing the spread of illness"

  • "Regular hand washing can reduce absenteeism amongst school children"

  • "Our hands carry a mixture of both good and bad bacteria"

  • "Most of the bacteria our hands pick up live on fingertips and under our nails"

  • "Washing with water alone doesn't guarantee that bad bacteria are removed"

  • "Good bacteria act as our personal shield against unwanted bacteria"

  • "Many bacteria can survive on surfaces for several months"

  • "The skin has its own natural defences against bad bacteria"


Find out more about good hand hygiene