clean your hands after touching feces

How To Clean Your Hands After Touching Feces

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Once the stench of fecal matter has found it’s way within our fingers, it can be an extremely difficult scent to eliminate.

Though it may seem like your hands will never return to normal, there are a range of effective household solutions for deodorizing your palms. By using the following tips and tricks you can be sure that your hands will be poo-free and smelling fresh

How to clean your hands after touching feces

Baking Soda Paste

This household powder has been used for generations as a deodorizer of difficult odors. If imply washing hands with soap has not delivered desirable results, you can proceed to create a baking soda paste that can help to absorb the residual poop aroma. Mix a solution of one part baking soda with two parts water within a small bowl and proceed to apply to the affected areas of your hands. Once you have rubbed this deodorizing compound through hands for 60-90 seconds, the baking soda residues can be washed away to leave hands smelling fresh.

White Vinegar Splash

As a common cooking and cleaning acid found within the kitchen, this substance can work wonders in cutting through difficult poop related odors within your hands. Begin by splashing hands with this solution and proceed to rub the white vinegar within the affected areas of the palms and fingers for 60-90 seconds. You may need to do this process 2-3 times if any odors remains within hands after the first application.

Neutralize with Rubbing Alcohol

In a similar application as white vinegar, the high alcohol levels within this compound can work to neutralize fecal odors on contact. After first washing hands, proceed to splash palms with rubbing alcohol and proceed to rub the solution within the hands until the alcohol has completely evaporated. If odors remain, try a second or rubbing alcohol splash until your hands are completely freshened.

Lemon Juice Squeeze

The citric acid within the lemon juice can work to slice through the difficult poop stench within your hands. Once you have soap washed hands, proceed to squeeze a teaspoon of lemon juice within one palm,and proceed to rub the juice through hands. If lemons are not available, an orange or a lime can yield similar deodorizing results.


When rubbing alcohol is not available, the use of vodka can provide similar results. As always, make sure that hands have been washed with soap before using this method. Begin by pouring 1-2 teaspoons of vodka within one palm, and proceed to rub it within hands until the alcohol has completely evaporated away.

Old Fashion Detergent

If you haven’t already done so, you should try washing hands with dish detergent soap. This type of soap has some deodorizing properties and may help in breaking down residual poop particles that may be clinging to your palm or fingers. In many cases, the use of dish detergent will be all that is needed to rid yourself of poop smelling palms.


On Diapers and Clothes

You will need:

  • Cleaning gloves
  • Two disposable plastic bags
  • Cleaning cloths or paper towels
  • A laundry detergent containing enzymes* (Ex: Arm and Hammer Essentials, Zout, and some liquid versions of Tide)
  • Chlorine bleach or white vinegar

* Enzymes are proteins that dissolve the bonds between the poop and fabric. In addition to cleaning, they’ll help remove the stain, too.


Step 1: Get it Off

Heat will set the stain, so at this point, you need to work with cold water only. So, put your gloves on, put the item in the plastic bag, and carry it to the bathroom. Dump as much of the crud into the toilet as you can, flushing as needed.

  • If the item is small enough (a diaper or pair of underwear, for instance) you can keep a grip on it while flushing the toilet several times to wash away as much of the crud as possible.
  • Rinse larger items in a bathtub, if necessary.

Step 2: Apply Enzyme Cleaner

(You can do this in the toilet or tub.) Add the enzyme-containing detergent.

  • Add roughly 2 tablespoons to the toilet bowl or 1/2 cup to a tub containing a couple of inches of cold water.
  • Let the item soak for 30 minutes. Drain/flush, squeeze out excess water and transfer the article to another plastic bag.

Be sure to disinfect the toilet or tub afterward!

Step 3: Launder and Dry

Now that you’ve treated the stain, it’s time to disinfect it.

  • Wash the item in HOT water with a HOT rinse using either 3/4 cup chlorine bleach or 2 cups white vinegar (not both — that’s dangerous!) and your regular laundry detergent.
  • If you don’t have a washing machine, you can hand wash the item in the freshly-rinsed tub or a bucket using 1/4 cup chlorine bleach or 1/2 cup white vinegar and 1-gallon HOT water.

Use a hot dryer or line-dry the item. Both methods will further help disinfect the fabric.

Cleaning Poop On Upholstery and Carpet

You will need:

  • Cleaning gloves
  • A disposable plastic bag
  • Something to scrape with (a paper plate you can toss works nicely)
  • Cleaning cloths or paper towels
  • A laundry detergent containing enzymes
  • A bowl
  • Liquid dish soap
  • Isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol (known as surgical spirits in the UK)

1. Get it off: Put your gloves on and grab a plastic bag. Use a paper plate to scoop up as much poop as possible and dump it in the bag. Wipe away the rest with a paper towel and toss it in the bag, too. Get a few paper towels damp with cold water and wipe, not rub, to remove more crud.

2. Wash in place: In a bowl, combine 1 quart of cold water with 2 tablespoons of a laundry detergent containing enzymes. (Ex. Arm and Hammer, Zout, or certain liquid versions of Tide.) Get a cloth wet and dab at the stain until the area is clean. Let dry.

3. Disinfect in place: Dab the spot with isopropyl alcohol to remove any lingering stain and disinfect the area. (This is safe on fabrics as well as microsuede and microfiber furniture. If in doubt, spot test first!)

4. Carpeting only: Once the area is dry, vacuum it thoroughly to restore the carpet’s nap. For stubborn stains, try my trick here and then shampoo the carpet.

Cleaning Poop on Hard Surfaces

You will need:

Cleaning gloves
A disposable plastic bag
Something to scrape with (a paper plate works well)
Cleaning cloths or paper towels
Disinfecting spray or wipes

Did you know? Disinfecting wipes are handy, but they don’t sanitize unless you use them correctly! To disinfect a surface using a wipe, it must remain visibly wet for FOUR minutes.

1. Dry wipe first: Put gloves on and, using dry paper towels, scoop up as much poop from the surface as you can. Toss the soiled materials into the plastic bag but don’t close it yet.

2. Wet wipe second: Get more paper towels soaked with HOT water and wipe up the remaining mess. Add them to the plastic bag and throw the whole thing out.

3. Disinfect then let dry: Wet the area liberally with a disinfectant. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes, or according to manufacturer’s directions. (It takes a lot longer to disinfect than to clean.) Wipe again with clean water and allow the area to dry.

And there you have it, the full poop on how to clean poop. Remember, to avoid cross-contaminating other places in your home, you should probably shower and change clothes as soon as you’re done.

Editor in Chief

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