Journey to Our Chinese Princess

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Have you ever noticed gals who sit their purses on public restroom floors - that go directly to their dining tables? Happens a lot! It's not
always the 'restaurant food' that causes stomach distress. Sometimes "what
you don't know 'will' hurt you"! Read on...

Mom got so upset when a guest came in the door and plopped their purses down
on the counter where she was cooking or setting up the buffet. She always
said that purses are really dirty, because of where they have been. Smart

It's something just about every woman carries with them. While we may know
what's inside our purses, do you have any idea what's on the outside? Shauna
Lake put purses to the test - for bacteria - with surprising results. You
may think twice about where you put your purse.

Women carry purses everywhere; from the office to public restrooms to the
floor of the car. Most women won't be caught without their purses, but did
you ever stop to think about where your purse goes during the day?

"I drive a school bus, so my purse has been on the floor of the bus a lot,"
says one woman. "On the floor of my car ... probably in restrooms."

"I put my purse in grocery shopping carts, on the floor of bathroom stalls while changing a diaper," says another woman and of course in my home
which should be clean." We decided to find out if purses harbor a lot of
bacteria. We learned how to test them at Nelson Laboratories in Salt Lake ,
then we set out to test the average woman's purse.

Most women told us they didn't stop to think about what was on the bottom of
their purse. Most said they usually set their purses on top of kitchen
tables and counters where food is prepared. Most of the ladies we talked to
told us they wouldn't be surprised if their purses were at least a little
bit dirty. It turns out purses are so surprisingly dirty, even the
microbiologist who tested them was shocked.

Microbiologist Amy Karen of Nelson Labs says nearly all of the purses tested
were not only high in bacteria, but high in harmful kinds of bacteria.
Pseudomonas can cause eye infections, staphylococcus aurous can cause
serious skin infections, and salmonella and e-coli found on the purses could
make people very sick. In one sampling, four of five purses tested positive
for salmonella, and that's not the worst of it. "There is fecal
contamination on the purses," says Amy. Leather or vinyl purses tended to be
cleaner than cloth purses, and lifestyle seemed to play a role.

People with kids tended to have dirtier purses than those without, with one
exception. The purse of one single woman who frequented nightclubs had one
of the worst contaminations of all.

"Some type of feces, or even possibly vomit or something like that," says
Amy. So the moral of this story - your purse won't kill you, but it does
have the potential to make you very sick if you keep it on places where you
eat. Use hooks to hang your purse at home and in restrooms, and don't put it
on your desk, a restaurant table, or on your kitchen countertop. Experts say
you should think of your purse the same way you would a pair of shoes. "If
you think about putting a pair of shoes onto your countertops, that's the
same thing you're doing when you put your purse on the countertops" - your
purse has gone where every individual before you has spat, coughed,
urinated, emptied bowels, etc! Do you really want to bring that home with you? The microbiologists at Nelson also said cleaning a purse will help.
Wash cloth purses and use leather cleaner to clean the bottom of leather


  • At 5:57 AM, Blogger Denna said…

    That is something to think about. That is very gross. Now you are going to have me thinking about this all the time. I hope nobody puts their purse on my counter. I need to make a copy of your post and have it ready for them to read. LOL Thanks for sharing.

  • At 9:07 PM, Blogger Joannah said…

    Oh, no! Now I'm giving my purse the evil eye!

  • At 7:21 PM, Blogger Kathryn said…

    I caught myself when we went out to eat almost putting the purse on the table. I think I'll use one of those anti-bacterial wipes that I use on my desk, phone, keyboard and mouse on my computer.


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