close up on modern public bathroom sink

According to a May 2021 survey of 500 consumers conducted by GP PRO, a division of Georgia-Pacific, two-thirds of consumers stated that drying their hands with 100-percent recycled fiber paper towels is more efficient and more effective than drying their hands with a jet air dryer with a HEPA filter.

Specifically, the survey found that of the 405 consumers with a preference regarding speed, 67 percent felt paper towels provided a faster hand dry, and 63 percent of the 415 consumers with a preference regarding drying ability felt paper towels performed better at fully drying their hands in an acceptable amount of time. These findings follow a September 2020 GP PRO consumer survey that found that while 72 percent of consumers are comfortable washing their hands in a public restroom, 81 percent want to get in and out of that restroom as quickly as possible. 

According to Julie Howard, vice president and general manager of GP PRO’s towel, skin care and air care categories, the company’s September survey provided great insight into why consumers want their public restroom experience to be fast. This survey, however, sheds light on what building owners, facility managers, and custodians can do to help provide that fast experience. 

“These findings offer clear cut information on one way to help give consumers what they want, which in this case is a fast restroom experience—stock the restroom with paper towels,” says Howard.

She added that with new, more transmissible variants of the coronavirus circulating throughout the country, these recent survey findings also provide information on how to help consumers recommit to proper hand hygiene. 

“From the outset of the coronavirus, health organizations have promoted the benefits of proper handwashing and hand drying, the latter of which means drying the hands completely," says Howard. "If two-thirds of our respondents feel paper towels are more effective at drying their hands in an acceptable amount of time, then I believe offering paper towels can help encourage and advance proper hand drying and potentially help curb the spread of this disease.”  

Click here to access the full survey.