Updated: Dec 4, 2022
You know those parents who are perfectly fine letting their kids play with toys with other sick kids in the doctor's office waiting room? Or, the ones who aren't fazed by their child picking up their pacifier off the ground at Disneyland and putting it back in their mouth? Well, that's NOT me. While I have come along way from the severe OCD contamination fears I had when I experienced postpartum anxiety, I still try to avoid germs whenever reasonably possible without my kids missing out on life. (Now, if you have seen my messy car you might not believe I still have some level of OCD haha; its very specific and can be inconsistent and illogical at times.) If you have a germaphobe in your life, here are some great gift ideas. I think really, we are all a little more careful about avoiding illness, after COVID anyway, so these could be great gifts for a lot of people.
Disclaimer #1 I am not a medical professional and I am not intending on giving medical advice. Please do your own research on the health and safety of these products. #2 I am an Amazon Affiliate. I may earn a small commission at no cost to the reader. All product choices are my own.
1. Automatic Faucets. The first reason I love these is that my kids are not touching something disgusting, turning on the faucet and then contaminating themselves again by turning it off with clean hands. But second, it saves water. The water isn't running while your hands are not under there. I have used both of these options and love them both. The first requires replacing the faucet, which my husband said was really not that complicated. And the second, I was actually able to attach on my own in minutes.
2. Automatic Soap Dispensers. These are the exact dispensers I use at home. The less contact with dirty surfaces the better I say. But also, these hold a lot of soap, and the kids aren't picking them up and squirting all different amounts of soap all over the place. My kids know they are supposed to put their hand under once and the right amount of soap comes out. (The amount can be adjusted.) Also, I rarely have to change the batteries. I think every 6 months or so we change them out. Is anyone else obsessed with the smell of Mrs. Meyers Lavender?
3. UV Sanitizers. I do not use any type of UV light near my skin because I have had melanoma. (Read about my experience with that here.) I have used UV light pacifier cleaners and have had a phone cleaner. I don't use wands because they are not fully enclosed, and I am OVERLY cautious; but I think some people would really love them, especially traveling. I recently came across this box, which cleans multiple items at once. Remotes, keys, toys, tablets and other high touch items would be perfect for this. You could even take this to hotels. I also added a highly rated phone cleaner that charges while cleaning.
4. Antibacterial Hand Wipe Mitts. I think these are GENIUS. You can wipe down surfaces like airplane trays or arm rests, shopping carts, gym equipment handles, door knobs, kids toys that have fallen on the floor etc. If you are regular "wiper downer" like me, you know you feel like you have to wipe your hands after wiping something down. And then you feel like, did I just actually cause myself to come into contact with more germs? I know it can't just be me...its my sister too. In fact, I am buying these for her for Christmas as I write this. I also like to wear gloves when I pump gas, so these would be great for that too, and it makes it a little cleaner for the next person.
5. Portable Hand Washing Supplies. True germaphobes have done their research. Sanitizing gel is not enough when leaving a public bathroom or porta-potty. It does not kill Norovirus, or certain other bugs. If you dare to read a pretty full list of what alcohol based hand sanitizer doesn't kill, check out https://bestlifeonline.com/hand-sanitizer-germs/ Good old soap and water is best. If you don't have a proper sink, you need portable supplies. The first item is awesome because it dispenses soap and water on the go. The soap sheets underneath it are pretty handy too! Now bathrooms aside, I still like to carry hand sanitizer and wipes places like stores to reduce germs just in case.
6. Purse Holder/Door Opener. Besides faucets, public door knobs are also a trigger for germ anxiety for me. This little handy tools helps you open doors without touching them and can be used as a purse holder. Of course you never want to set your purse down on something dirty like a bathroom floor and then later set your purse on your countertop.
7. Travel Essentials. I know they discourage this because some people might have bed bugs, but a lot of times, I bring extra bedding on trips. If its a very nice hotel I might not, or if I'm traveling without the kids, but in cabins and other rentals I often bring bedding for the family. I put a large fitted sheet over the whole bed and then add my own blanket or sleeping bag depending on the weather. In warm weather, this travel sheet link below would be perfect! Travel disinfectants are also handy as well as plastic lined toilet seat covers. (The paper ones just don't do the job.)
8. Cool Soap Clean can be pretty too, or fun.
9. Lotion My OCD tends to flare up when I am under a lot of stress. And, then I tend to wash my hands a lot. Which in turn leads to dry hands. If you know someone like this, lotion is much appreciated.
10. Funny Gifts. If someone is sensitive about their germaphobe or OCD status, PLEASE DO NOT buy these gifts. These gifts are for friends and family who own the fact that they are the first one passing out the hand sanitizer, and can laugh about it.
*You may notice I did not include air purifiers. It seems like there isn't a consensus if they really help with viruses. And, there's a possibility of them emitting ozone. So, I just skipped it. When do I use one- casino hotel rooms when I have small kids.
I hope my list inspired a gift or two.
Have a merry holiday season!