Washington, DC, March 25, 2020 — A new poll conducted by Ipsos finds that a majority of Americans are making changes to their hygiene and cleaning practices in light of the coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak. Over three-quarters report washing their hands with soap and water more (78%), and 58% are more mindful about washing their hands for at least 20 seconds, compared to only 10% who say they have not made any changes to their hand hygiene.
Over two-thirds report using more hand soap (69%) and three in five say they have used more hand sanitizer (59%) since learning about the outbreak. Fewer than half report increasing their use multi-purpose disinfectant wipes (44%) or spray (36%), as well as paper towels (35%). Only 12% say they have not used any hygiene or cleaning products more since they learned about COVID-19. Regardless of whether their use of cleaning products has increased or not, a vast majority, 82%, are confident that the cleaning products they use will protect against the spread of the virus.
There are several points of division when we look at the data based on age, household income, and children in the household. Those who make less than $50,000 annually are significantly more likely to report not making any changes to their hand hygiene practices (13%) compared to those making $100,000 or more annually (7%). However, those making less than $50,000 are significantly more likely to use toilet/bathroom cleaner (28%) or bleach (23%) more to combat the virus compared to those making $100,000 or more (17% and 13%, respectively).
Americans with children under 18 in their household, on the other hand, are significantly more likely to use multi-purpose disinfectant wipes or spray (54% and 50%, respectively) compared to those who do not have children (41% and 32%, respectively). Those who are aged 55 or older are more than twice as likely to report using no disinfectants at all (16%) compared to those aged 35-54 (7%), and more than five times as likely compared to those aged 18-34 (3%).