Henkel sees an opportunity for gentle hand soap as COVID personal care habits persist

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / (Maksym Belchenko)
© Getty Images / (Maksym Belchenko)

Related tags Hygiene Soap Henkel Canada

The chemical company’s beauty care division has released data from a third survey, conducted across Canada, gathering information about hygiene and virus-prevention practices.

This latest survey took place in March of this year and included over 1,500 Canadians over the age of 18. And, it’s being circulated to retrospectively illustrate demand for new products like the Dial Clean + Gentle collection of hand and body wash products that Henkel announced in February of 2021.

In February, Randi Melton, Vice President of Marketing for Body Care at Henkel explained that “with Clean + Gentle, Dial is appealing to the consumer who is seeking and using hypoallergenic products that are free from ingredients like dyes, parabens, phthalates and silicones.Providing them with an option that is proven to be gentle on skin, but is also backed by the trusted Dial brand.” ​The new foaming hand wash products promise to clean skin and to hydrate skin.

Tracking consumer hand-washing habits during the COVID-19 pandemic

The newly released data shows that consumers, at least in Canada, have developed new hygiene habits during the pandemic and that these habits will linger. 49% of respondents told Leger (the market research and analytics company​ that conducted this recent survey for Henkel) that they would continue frequent handwashing. 26% plan to keep wearing facial coverings and 19% will be social/physical distancing in the future.

In July of 2020, Henkel shared data from a previous survey; this one conducted by the Germany-based marketing and research firm bms. And while the data points don’t pair up neatly, it’s clear that handwashing has been a key personal care and hygiene practice through out the pandemic. As Cosmetics Design reported last summer,​ the bms survey data showed that “prior to the pandemic, the most common handwashing routine was 3 to 4 times a day. Since the pandemic, the most common response jumped to 11 to 14 handwashes a day.”

The side effects of hand hygiene

 Perhaps the most relevant statistic for Dial’s new hand and body wash line is that 66% of Leger survey respondents “said that frequent handwashing during the pandemic has made their hands feel dryer and/or damaged.” ​And subsequently, 43% are now “actively seeking out hand soap that is formulated to be gentle on their skin.”

Other telling data shared in this month’s media release are that 36% of those surveyed “sometimes” ​wash hands prior to eating and that of adults survey who have children, 60% reported that their kids were washing their hands more often now than prior to the pandemic.

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