DiscoverHealth

Hands covered with purple paint to show proper handwashign

Hand washing: The Purple Paint Demonstration

There’s a lot of talk about the importance of handwashing and making sure that you are spending 20 seconds or more on the task.

But how’s your technique?

If all you’re doing is rubbing your hands together, then you aren’t getting all the spots where germs can live. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown from Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System Infection Preventionist Marilyn Hellebuyck, RN, based on CDC recommendations.

  1. Use enough soap to cover your hands.
  2. Rub your palms together.
  3. Interlace your fingers palm to palm several times.
  4. Lay your right palm over the top of your left hand and interlace, then vice versa.
  5. Use the back of your fingers on opposing palms, with fingers interlocked.
  6. Wrap your hand around your thumb and rub, then switch thumbs and repeat.
  7. Rub clasped fingertips into your palm; repeat with your other hand.
  8. Rub your wrists one last time.
  9. Rinse with water; dry with a single-use towel.

Got a minute? Watch the process here.