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Old 06-21-2002, 06:11 PM
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Cleaning Grease Off Your Hands

Cleaning Grease Off Your Hands

Joseph Haller
Just got through with a particularly nasty car project and as I was cleaning up it occurred to me that this tip might be of interest. As some of you know, I worked in the service dept. of a Cadillac dealership in the mid '80's. Filthy work, particularly when working on the ill-fated 5.7 diesels. The service manager was constantly trying new hand cleaners and salesmen would often bring samples, so I had the opportunity to try just about anything that's out there. Additionally, I have spent a fair amount of time in the oil patch, which, as you may have heard, will also soil your lily-white hands. Ditto on the hand cleaner sampling here.

Now, out of all the various cleaning solutions I have tried, guess what the absolute most effective cut-the-grease-right-now stuff is?

Scroll Down - Building suspense.


TIDE LAUNDRY DETERGENT! I'm serious - and it's got to be Tide; don't let your wife or S/O foist some of that crap with green crystals, or Comet cleanser, or anything else on you. It ain't the same, and it ain't as good.

Some of you may have already discovered this on your own. To the rest, I say "Try it, you'll like it". Price is right, too.

Blaine Hoopes
Someone told me that years ago when I serviced construction equipment in the summers as a kid. It worked then too but sure beat the hell out of your skin (I guess anything that can clean that grease off is gonna take the oils out of your skin too).

JP Honeywell
My wife doesn't like powdered detergents so it's unlikely I'll be getting a box of Tide anytime soon. But a couple things come to mind here. Tide, being a good detergent, is chock full of organic chemicals that bind better to grease and oils than clothes (or skin). But therein lies the problem with skin. Removing the oils from your skin removes a layer of protection. If these same organic chemicals are left on your skin (insufficient rinsing - and it does require a lot of rinsing) you can saponify your skin. Worst case, this can lead to an irreversible skin condition which can cause your hands to crack and bleed.

Okay, that's a doomsday situation in the extreme. I've found that a mild dishwashing soap used with a cellulose sponge does a lot better job by mildly scrubbing my skin without scrubbing off my skin or exposing it to harsh chemicals. Keep your Lava, Goop, gritty Orange-whatever. Just give me a sponge and a drip of Dawn or Ajax.

Joseph Haller
There's a product out that's called "Invisible Glove" which is supposed to address this issue. It's a lotion that you apply before starting that nasty job. I've tried it, and it does seem to make cleanup afterward a bit easier and minimizes the drying out effect. Problem is that I keep forgetting to use it...

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