Newsy / Leah Becerra

The Case For Screen Cleaner: Your Phone Is Dirtier Than Public Toilets

At CES, we learned how unsanitary smartphones really are. After we talked with Whoosh!, we were convinced that our screens needed a deep clean.

By Mikah Sargent | January 9, 2016

Your phone is dirty. We're talking really, really dirty.

"It's unbelievable, but the facts are that your average cellphone or tablet or any hand-touched device is dirtier than a public toilet. And the average person puts their phone, their personal device up to their face 50 times a day," said Whoosh! rep Kevin Gabriel.

Yeah, that's pretty gross, but what does it actually mean? What do we have to be worried about?

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"Staphylococcus, Rhodotorula, Bacillus; a lot of common household germs that people transfer," Gabriel said.

Well, that answers that question. But what's your solution to our germy problem?

Gabriel: "We do a quick 30-second clean, disinfect and wipe with an antimicrobial cloth that we use, along with the Whoosh! formula. Just one quick cleaning, all you need to do is that a couple times a day. You can eliminate spreading viruses and some dirt."

But what makes Whoosh! any better than my trusty $2 bottle of hand sanitizer, or any of the dozens of other screen-cleaning products out there? (Video via Hama Worldwide / CC BY 3.0)

"Because anybody who uses an alcohol-based product, it starts to take away the retina screens," Gabriel said. "It leaves a film on screens; it starts to tear away at it. If you've ever used Windex or vinegar or anything like that, you start to see some degradation on your electronics." (Video via Apple)

It's worth noting Apple recommends a clean, soft cloth as your go-to cleaning option. Microsoft says you can use eyeglass cleaner if it's needed.

Or you could go all-out and store your phone in a UV sterilization cradle. (Video via Violife LLC)

Phone fact recap: Your touchscreen is probably dirtier than a public toilet. Staph is one of many germs known to contaminate touchscreen devices. Alcohol, glass cleaner and vinegar can damage the coating on your screen.

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