When using soap to wash your hands, it is not just used to remove the dirt and grease from your skin. There is an invisible reason why you use soap and water to wash your hands.
This reason is called bacteria, and they may cause bad things to happen to you that will make you ill.
We will take a close look at best soaps for killing bacteria. But with all the frequent hand washing, we’ll also recommend hand soaps that don’t dry out hands and help moisturize instead.
No matter whether you have sensitive skin, normal skin, or skin conditions — there is something for everyone here.
Table of Contents
- What Ingredients Should You Look for When Choosing a Moisturizing Antibacterial Soap?
- Top 10 Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soap Bars and Washes
- Best Moisturizing Hand Soap for Dry Skin
- Best Hand Soap for Sensitive Skin
- Best Drugstore Hand Wash
- Best Luxury Hand Soap Wash
- Best for Babies
- Best Hand Soap to Kill Germs
- Best Hand Wash for Pregnant Women
- Best Moisturizing Hand Soap for Eczema
- Best Natural Hand Soap
- Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soap Bar
- Learn more about soaps
- Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soaps and Washes: Final Thoughts
What Ingredients Should You Look for When Choosing a Moisturizing Antibacterial Soap?
First, we should mention what must not be in the antibacterial soap that you use in your home, as some items might be harmful. Triclosan and triclocarban are the two ingredients that are banned from being used in antibacterial soap.
Benzalkonium chloride is an antibacterial agent that is found in antibacterial soaps to help kill germs that are on the skin. Cetrimonium chloride will help make the skin softer and smoother and help moisturize the skin while you wash your hands.
Glycerin is also one of the ingredients that will help retain water in the skin and keep the skin moisturized.
Top 10 Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soap Bars and Washes
- Dial Complete 2 In 1 Hand Wash
- Antibacterial Hand Soap from Softsoap
- Seventh Generation Hand Wash Soap
- Hand Wash from the Grown Alchemist
- Puracy Baby Wash
- Dial Complete Antibacterial Handwash
- Jergens Moisturizing Hand Wash
- Free & Clear Liquid Hand Soap
- Puracy Natural Gel Hand Soap
- Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing BarCetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar, 4.5 Ounce (3 Count)
Best Moisturizing Hand Soap for Dry Skin
Dial Complete 2 In 1 Hand wash
This hand wash soap contains active antibacterial ingredients to kill off most of the bacteria that are found on the skin.
You can use this hand wash on a daily basis and quite regularly throughout the day without experiencing side effects from using it.
How can I moisturize my hands without lotion? With this soap, there are botanical oils in the formula that will help moisturize the skin while you are washing your hands.
- Contains antibacterial ingredients
- Can be used long without side effects
- Essential oils in the formula
- No artificial colors
- Fragrance is a bit strong
- No refills available for this hand wash
For an alternative, check out Dial’s bar soap line:
Dial Miracle Oil bar soap
Best Hand Soap for Sensitive Skin
Softsoap Antibacterial Hand Soap
This hand wash soap from Softsoap comes with a unique formula that will leave the skin soft and smooth without irritating it.
It also has some antibacterial ingredients to help kill some of the daily bacteria that will be found on the skin.
This is the ideal hand wash soap for sensitive skin and will moisturize the skin while you wash your hands.
- Has antibacterial ingredients
- Comes with a refillable pump
- Great for sensitive skin
- Also has moisturizing ingredients
- Fragrance is quite strong
- Not tested with all bacteria
For a great alternative, try Olivia Care’s bathroom and kitchen hand soap:
Olivia Care Moisturizing Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soap
Best Drugstore Hand Wash
Hand Wash Soap from Seventh Generation
This hand wash soap contains moisturizing ingredients that will help moisturize the skin while you wash it.
It is designed to be used without drying the hands after you have washed them, and it still prevents the hands from drying out.
This formula does not contain any fragrance, so those people who cannot stand strong fragrances in their soap have nothing to worry about.
- Has great moisturizing ingredients
- Can be used without drying the hands
- Contains no fragrances or colorants
- 97% plant-based formula
- Not suitable for sensitive skin
- No refill bottles available
For a different option, try Everyone’s moisturizing hand soap:
Everyone Lavender and Coconut scented Hand Soap
Best Luxury Hand Soap Wash
The Grown Alchemist Hand Wash
This wash comes with great moisturizing features and can be used on a regular basis without irritating the skin at all.
The formula is 100% plant-based, with essential oils included to help in the moisturizing process while it cleans the hands.
This hand wash contains no harmful chemicals and will leave the skin soft and with a smooth feel to it after a wash.
- Contains essential oils
- Completely plant-based product
- Also great for sensitive skin
- Contains good moisturizing ingredients
- Comes with quite a strong fragrance
- May dry out the skin
Another great brand of luxury hand soap is L’Occitane:
L’Occitane Shea Butter hand soap
Best for Babies
This body wash for babies contains no harsh chemicals and can be used on a regular basis. It will also not burn the eyes when you use it so it can be used even as a bubble bath for babies.
This baby wash will moisturize the skin while the baby is taking a bath with the natural oils it contains in the formula.
- Contains only natural ingredients
- Will not burn the eyes
- Can be used every day without side effects
- Has a good moisturizing ingredient
- Not suitable for very sensitive and delicate skin
- Fragrance may be a bit strong
Best Hand Soap to Kill Germs
This antibacterial hand wash contains only natural spring water in the formula to provide a great natural moisturizing effect for sensitive skin.
It will kill 99.9% of all known germs, and that makes it a very effective antibacterial hand wash. It also contains natural oils that increase the moisturizing feature of this hand wash soap.
- Uses natural spring water
- Will kill almost all germs
- Contains natural moisturizer
- Also great for sensitive skin
- Contains pathogens
- No refills available
Best Hand Wash for Pregnant Women
The natural moisturizing effect of this hand wash is possible due to the natural moisturizing ingredients that are part of the formula. It is very suitable to be used with most skin types and will leave the skin with a silky smooth feel after washing.
This hand wash contains only natural ingredients that will help the skin while you are washing your hands with it.
- Contains great moisturizing features
- Has only natural ingredients
- Suitable for most skin types
- Will leave the skin silky smooth
- Scent may be offensive to some people
- No refills available
RELATED: Pregnancy Safe Drugstore Makeup
Best Moisturizing Hand Soap for Eczema
This hand soap contains no irritating chemicals that are harmful to the skin and is great for those with eczema. It contains no parabens and has only mild natural ingredients for a smooth and easy cleaning effect.
The moisturizers in this formula are all-natural oils that will leave the skin smooth and soft after washing your hands.
- Great to be used with eczema
- Free of chemical irritants
- Contains no parabens
- Has a natural moisturizing feature
- No refills available for this hand soap
- Does not lather well
Best Natural Hand Soap
Natural Gel Hand Soap From Puracy
This is a natural hand soap that contains only natural ingredients for washing your hands. It is suitable to be used with almost all skin types due to the all-natural ingredients in the formula.
This hand soap contains no parabens in the formula.
- Comes with a natural moisturizer
- Great for different skin types
- Contains no parabens
- Provides natural vitamins and minerals
- Too thin and runny
- Fragrance is a bit too strong
Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soap Bar
This bar is ideal for dry skin due to the moisturizing natural oils in the formula.
It will help moisturize the skin while you are washing your hands.
- Great for dry skin
- Contains natural moisturizing features
- Does not have irritating chemicals
- Quite a mild formula
- Not available as a liquid soap
- Cannot be used on sensitive skin
RELATED: Cetaphil for Acne
Learn more about soaps
Because we wanted to provide information as thorough as possible, we’ve also listed below some answers to questions you may have about soaps.
Check it out before you purchase to know what you’re really looking for.
What is in Soap That Kills Germs?
If you’ve seen our previous post on antibacterial body washes for a thorough cleaning, you’ll have a rough idea of what antibacterial means.
Let’s talk more about germs.
‘Germ’ is a loosely used term that includes all those organisms that we cannot see with the naked eye. This includes all those well-known things, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, as well as prions and protists.
Antibacterial soaps contains alcohol and soap which will kill most germs that attach themselves to the skin. There is a substance in the soap called amphiphiles that is the same as the lipids in the virus membrane.
These molecules in the soap compete with the lipids in the virus membrane and, in the process, cause it to fall apart. Triclosan is an active bacteria-killing agent found in many soaps, and it kills bacteria and fungus but does nothing to a virus.
It is quite safe if the soap contains the triclosan to remove bacteria that are found on the skin. This is the main reason why soap is so effective in killing germs that may cling to your skin.
The active killing agent triclosan is also found in many other antibacterial products, such as toothpaste and many brands of soap. However, triclosan is not so good for you in the long run and may have some negative side effects.
Does Foaming Hand Soap Kill Germs?
Getting rid of the germs that are on your hands may depend more on the way you wash your hands. If you use normal foamy soap and you properly wash your hands to get rid of all the germs, it will work just fine. Depending on the ingredients in the soap, it may not kill all the germs, but it will help dislodge them from your skin.
No matter what type of antibacterial soap you are using, the correct method is to properly scrub the entire hand. This scrubbing should last for about 20 seconds, and you should clean between the fingers, as well as the back and front.
Why are Antibacterial Soaps More Effective?
Antibacterial soap contains active bacterial killing agents that will help kill certain bacteria that can be found on the skin. The problem with antibacterial soap is that it can cause these bacteria to change into superbugs that will become immune to these killers.
Then, there are some antibacterial soaps that contain alcohol, which will kill bacteria, as well as viruses and fungi. The one problem with alcohol is that it may cause the hands to dry out, which will cause cracks in the skin.
These cracks in the skin will allow bacteria and many other germs to hide and cannot be easily removed from the skin. If you are at home, a good scrub that causes friction on the skin with antibacterial soap will get rid of the harmful germs.
What is the Difference Between Antibacterial Soap and Normal Soap?
The main difference between antibacterial soap and normal soap lies in the presence of the bacteria-killing agents in it. Previously, the bacteria-killing agent, triclosan, was used, but it is now replaced with chloroxylenol and benzethonium chloride as bacteria-killing agents.
These agents will kill off the bacteria on the hands. Some of these antibacterial soaps also contain alcohol to help kill the viruses and fungi that are on the skin.
The alcohol content of these antibacterial soaps makes a huge difference in the effectiveness of these soaps against germs.
Normal soap is typically the best soap for frequent hand washing as it will not dry out your hands.
Can Washing Your Hands Too Much Cause Dry Skin?
Especially during the dry and cold winter months, washing your hands too much will cause dry skin. It is also true that if you wash your hands too much with an alcohol-based soap, it will dry out the skin.
Even if you wash your hands excessively without soap in the winter months, it could dry out the skin on your hands. It is necessary to thoroughly dry your hands after you rinse them in running water while you wash your hands.
Unfortunately, all types of soap, especially liquid soaps, will wash off the natural oils from the skin, causing it to dry out. There is also the alternative to find a moisturizer to use after every time you wash and dry your hands thoroughly.
This is also one of the main reasons why you’re discouraged to wash your face with hand soap.
Why Is It Important to Have Moisturizing Ingredients in Your Hand Soap?
As said before, the skin contains natural oil to help keep it moisturized, so it will not get dried out too much. When you wash your hands with soap, it will remove the natural oils that are on the skin, leaving it dry.
To replace the moisture in your skin, it is important to use a moisturizer on the hands after a thorough washing. Some of these moisturizers will help the glands produce more of these oils while moisturizing the skin from the outside.
There are also some of these antibacterial soaps that contain moisturizers to keep your skin healthy and moisturized at all times. Your hands may also get dry and flaky, and these flakes will then transfer the bacteria to others, as well.
Are Hand Washes with Moisturizers Good for People with Dry Skin?
It is very important that you give special attention to dry skin when it comes to washing germs off of your hands. Special care should be given to what type of soap you are using when washing the hands clean of germs.
Alcohol-based hand sanitizers, as well as antibacterial soap with an alcohol base, is the No. 1 enemy of dry skin. That is why you should look for an antibacterial soap that contains a moisturizer if you have very dry skin.
To be on the safe side, you should also always use a moisturizer after washing your hands with any type of soap.
Are Hand Washes with Moisturizers Good for People with Sensitive Skin?
For those people with sensitive skin, it is necessary to use the right types of soap to wash their hands. Specially formulated and moisturizing hand soap for eczema and other skin problems are recommended. They contain moisturizers and provide protection for the skin.
People with sensitive skin types should not use alcohol-based hand sanitizers that they bought over the counter or in any drug store. Hand soaps that contain only natural ingredients are the best type of soap for people with sensitive or problem-prone skin types.
Hand washes with moisturizes are good for people with sensitive skin types, provided they do not contain harmful chemicals that irritate the skin.
Additionally, if you have sensitive skin, try to limit how often you wash your hands.
Best Moisturizing Antibacterial Hand Soaps and Washes: Final Thoughts
The most important ingredients for a good antibacterial moisturizing hand soap are the most obvious ones. The moisturizing features, as well as the ability to kill germs, are what you need from such a hand soap.
For the most natural options, you may pay quite a bit more, but that may be worth it if you look at the final results. To get the germs off your hands, you only need any type of soap and running water.
Did we miss your tried and tested brand? Let us know!