Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap Dispenser and Coupon Guide for Consumers
Most of us have used a modern public restroom and marveled at automatic water, hand soap, paper towel dispensers, and hand dryers. All of these devices are in place to make us feel clean and to reduce our unintended interaction with previous, less cleanly folks.
The Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System (also known in Europe as the Dettol No-Touch Hand Wash System) is a device which aims to bring part of the hands-free soap experience to your kitchen or bathroom. While automatic soap dispensers have been available for quite some time, the Lysol No-Touch soap dispenser may be the first to fall below the $20 retail mark, even well below $10 with Lysol coupons. Following recent Lysol marketing campaigns many consumers have rushed out to buy the new gadget, others are waiting for a sale, and some are just scratching their heads.
This series examines the conceptual, financial, and physical benefits and shortcomings of the Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System and Healthy Touch refills and highlights how one consumer is saving money on the device and soap refills. You can also learn where to find printable coupons for the Lysol Soap Dispenser and other home products.
PerfectaWash - New Automatic Dispenser Product
RB has launched a new variant of the Lysol No Touch Hand Soap Dispenser called Clearasil PerfectaWash. It dispenses "the perfect dose" of facial cleanser. The product seems to have even less of a conceptual foundation than the automatic soap dispenser. Hopefully it will not suffer from the same mechanical defects and loose interpretation of "perfect amount" that the Lysol No Touch has been ridiculed for.
The Concept - Automatic Soap Dispensers
The question that beckons many consumers who are on the fence about this technology is
The only reason I touch a soap dispenser is to put soap in my hands, and the only reason I put soap in my hands is to wash them clean... Why should I buy a machine that will keep my dirty hands cleaner before I wash them?
Each person may have their own answer to that question - perhaps you feel cleaner or just enjoy the convenience. We won't start a debate regarding whether your hands are actually any cleaner.
Practical uses for automatic soap
Instead, consider practical situations where your hands are so dirty that you do not want to touch anything. The Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System really shines in the kitchen, providing the right amount of soap to wash away grease and bacteria from handling raw meat or the cocoa from your no-bake cookies. While it may not be necessary for disinfecting the average hand, the Lysol No-Touch may be a cook's best friend.
If it were a dish soap dispenser, an automatic system would conveniently reapply dish soap to your sponge, preventing the inevitable weekly circus act - frying pan left hand, sponge and soap dispenser right hand, daughter climbing right leg, dog napping on left foot!
Touch-free soap, but what about water?
Now if only you could get an automatic kitchen faucet for under $20 you would have a perfect hands-free kitchen! Arguably, an automatic faucet is more beneficial than an automatic soap dispenser since you have to touch the knobs before and after washing. While it may impress your neighbors, if such a home improvement project does not fit into your budget you can still maximize your cleanliness by controlling the faucet with your forearms or using your hand towel to turn off the faucet. If you share the kitchen, just ask for help.
If you are concerned about germs on your soap pump you should also be concerned about germs on your faucet knobs and even more concerned about doorknobs where even people who have not washed their hands have touched. Not all bacteria is bad, not all germs will affect you... just keep the bathroom clean and the doorknob sanitized with Lysol disinfectant spray and if you want the convenience of automatic soap, go for it!
If it were an instant hand sanitizer, although it would not be of any assistance with greasy hands, an automatic hand sanitizer dispenser would remove the need to touch anything else. As the Lysol Healthy Touch product line already includes an instant hand sanitizer product, we will probably see the development of a high-quality instant had sanitizer refill for the Lysol No-Touch.
The Device - Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System
It is no secret that consumer-friendly clones of commercial appliances tend to have shortcomings when compared to their big brothers. An inexpensive blade coffee grinder will be less consistent than a commercial burr grinder and brochures printed with a commercial offset printer could protect inkjet printed brochures from the rain.
Similarly, the Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System may not live up to the expectations of consumers who have used commercial or more expensive consumer grade soap dispensers.
Is it the right amount?
If you have not yet tried the Lysol No-Touch yet, this promotional video shows the amount of soap dispensed. Compare it to our photo below using watered down Lysol Healthy Touch soap.
Just the "right amount" of soap
One of the most useful features of more expensive dispensers is a quantity control. The Lysol No-Touch does not offer any user control for this, it gives what the advertisements call "just the right amount of soap." It seems to be about the same amount of soap you would get out of a standard Softsoap dispenser when you push the plunger all the way down, certainly ample for even the greasiest of hands.
Some may believe that the definition of "right amount" for this product is determined by the amount of Benzethonium chloride, the Healthy Touch antiseptic ingredient, required to kill bacteria. Others may argue that the "right amount" is determined by the company's profit margin on the product, taking into consideration that some people will find the refills too expensive and some will manually refill the soap containers.
The sensor does not stop the soap when you remove your hand, and the mechanical elements of the dispenser require the same amount of soap to be dispensed every time. Guests who are not accustomed to the Lysol No-Touch may remove their hand prematurely, leaving a mess on the counter top.
If you have soft water which struggles to rinse off the Lysol Healthy Touch soap or you simply want to reduce the amount of expensive soap that you use, you may be out of luck. However, with a bit of trial and error it is possible to reduce the amount of soap dispensed by the Lysol No-Touch. Unfortunately, for most people the effort required to do so is probably not worth the reduced soap waste.
- Homemade Foam Soap Tips
It's easy to foam soap at home for hand soaps and dish soaps and the savings add up!
Not particularly fun
Some people want products like this just because they look fun. The Lysol No-Touch is not particularly fun; the experience is roughly equivalent to having a friend pump some soap into your hand while making a humming noise. If you have children, this weakness may be a strength but consider that if your children decide it is fun they can waste a lot of expensive soap very quickly.
Parents searching for an automatic soap dispenser that is within the reach of children would be better off to find an automatic dispenser with a refillable soap reservoir and adjustable soap amount. Foaming dispensers are more fun, much less wasteful, and can be refilled by watering-down normal hand soap though they are not yet any consumer-friendly automatic foaming soap dispensers.
Strong, long-lasting fragrance
The Lysol Healthy Touch soap has a stronger and longer lasting fragrance than most hand soaps. Whether this is a plus or minus is for you to decide!
For those of you who can't stand the smell of the Cucumber soap, the most prevalent Healthy Touch refill, Lysol has released a new antibacterial hand soap for the No Touch dispenser. If you see the new "Aloe Vera & Vitamin E with Moisturizers," give it a try - the name promises a more subtle fragrance.
Compact and well-built
The Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System is smaller than other dispensers, requiring only 3.5x2.5 inches (8.9x6.4 cm) of counter space and 7 inches (17.8 cm) height clearance. The soap is dispensed 1 inch (2.5 cm) away from the unit, roughly in the center of the protruding 2 inch (5 cm) dispenser head. Unfortunately there is no wall mount option so the dispenser will require a dedicated level surface near your sink.
The device feels sturdy and with a full refill canister it is heavy enough to not fall over. On the inside, the wires are secured with a good amount of solder and the gears are well-lubricated so the mechanical and electrical elements should stand the test of time when used as directed. The motion sensor works well, easily sensing a hand and so far no accidental dispensing. The sensor points back toward the device forming a 3.5x1x4 inch (8.9x2.5x10.2 cm) triangular sensing area. In other words, it can safely hang over the sink without detecting the motion of washing dishes.
The battery compartment is on the bottom and is easy to open. There are no worries about spilling soap to change the batteries; the refill canister clicks and locks into place and even with the refill removed a one-way valve prevents any leakage.
The Cost - Device, Refills, and How to Save Money
The Lysol No-Touch is offered at a lower starting retail price than other automatic soap dispensers. The low cost is partially due to the profitable soap refills which currently offer different fragrances and could possibly offer different soap options (instant sanitizer and dish soap) in the future. However, in the long run this device is more expensive and wasteful than other automatic soap dispensers and traditional manual pumps. The same cost concerns affect the Dettol No-Touch Hand Wash System sold in Europe.
To get you thinking...
Starter kit cost
The Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System starter kit includes the dispenser, full-size soap bottle, and 4 AA alkaline batteries at a retail price ranging from $10 to $16. If you are thinking about buying this, look for sales and store coupons which can be matched with the $3 off manufacturer coupons in the January 24 Sunday paper. Currently, Target and Rite Aid offer $1 off store coupons which can be used in addition to the $3 off manufacturer coupon. Walgreens has a $5 off store coupon available in their monthly coupon booklet which can be used through the end of March, 2010.
The operating cost of the Lysol No-Touch has to be determined in comparison to the alternatives. Most automatic soap pumps can be refilled with normal hand soap, and large containers of Softsoap can be purchased for about $0.10 per ounce (~$6 for a 64oz bottle). Manual Softsoap pumps can be purchased for about $0.13 to $0.20 per ounce.
The Lysol Healthy Touch refills cost about $4.50 each for 8.5 ounces, weighing in at $0.53 per ounce, 2 to 5 times more than you would pay for other antibacterial hand soaps. In standard usage, one refill will perform about 166 dispenses. If used 4 times daily, each refill will last about 6 weeks for a yearly operating cost of about $39. To put $39 in perspective, the price for the same amount (74 ounces) of Softsoap is about $10.
Considering that any children in the house will most likely use this as a toy and waste a lot of soap, the cost will rise and may be prohibitive on any budget. If there were a way to water down the soap or refill the Lysol No-Touch with less expensive soap it would make this product a top contender for counter space in the homes of those people who are concerned about the operating costs.
Watch for falling prices!
As more consumers get great deals on this system it will become more affordable at online marketplaces such as Amazon. If you don't have coupons or can't find a sale just wait until someone else does!
How to save money on the Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System
If you have decided that you want to buy this gadget, read how one consumer is saving money on the Lysol No-Touch.
You can save a lot of money on the cost of the starter kit with some smart shopping. The best time to buy is while the product is still new to the market and undergoing several cross-promotions where you can stack sales, store coupons, manufacturer coupons, and rebates. While you may never find a great price on the refills, a smart consumer can save a lot of money in that department as well.
If you are lucky enough to find a sale on the refills, be sure to stock up! Also be on the lookout for upcoming promotions and clearances as the availability of fragrances and soap varieties evolves!
The author is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or otherwise associated with the manufacturer of this product. The machine pictured above was purchased from Rite Aid pharmacy.
Dirty hands photo by Evelien De Bruyne.
Lysol® and Dettol® are registered trademarks of Reckitt Benckiser Group. Softsoap® is a registered trademark of Minetonka, Inc. Corporation. Dawn® is a registered trademark of Procter & Gamble.