Goldshield is a water-based moisturizing hand sanitizer that uses an advanced, non-alcohol formula to instantly kill 99.9% of germs.
All you have to do is apply Goldshield’s moisturizing foam 1-2 times daily, and its pleasant grape fragrance will continue killing germs hours longer than alcohol-based sanitizers. You also won’t have to worry about Goldshield’s gentle formula drying your hands or causing your skin to crack.
And because Goldshield is FDA registered, you can rest assured that it’s safe enough for your children.
Moisturizing or not, is Goldshield worth your money, or are you being sold an overpriced, overhyped product? Let’s begin by looking at what Goldshield claims to eliminate; germs, that is.
Should You Use a Hand Sanitizer To Kill Germs?
Despite their icky reputation, the fact of the matter is that not all germs or bacteria are bad for you. In fact, the bacteria in your gut play a big part in keeping your immune system active and your body healthy, which is the whole idea behind probiotic supplements.
However, there are some very nasty germs that can make us sick, which hand sanitizers can help kill before they make their way into our body. As such, the CDC recommends using alcohol-based hand sanitizers (along with washing our hands using regular soap and water).
But alcohol-based hand sanitizers won’t kill all germs, and they’re only useful for bacteria. Why is this important?
Because some of the worst “normal” illnesses, such as the cold and flu, are caused by viruses, which cannot be killed using a hand sanitizer.
But all of this references alcohol-based sanitizers, while Goldshield claims to be alcohol free. So how does it work?
How Does Goldshield Kill Germs?
Most traditional hand sanitizers kill germs using 60% or more ethyl or isopropyl alcohol, although non-alcohol products like Goldshield generally use benzalkonium chloride, usually in concentrations of 0.1% or less.
In concentrations higher than this, benzalkonium chloride can actually cause some pretty severe skin irritation (note: we’re not told exactly what ingredients Goldshield contains, or their concentration). Goldshield is FDA registered though, so most users shouldn’t expect anything severe.
What does FDA registered actually mean, though?
Is Goldshield Really FDA Registered?
Cut to the chase? Here’s the short answer: The FDA doesn’t register hand sanitizers, so the answer appears to be “no.”
Like science? Here’s the detailed answer: According to this FDA Fact Sheet, “All alcohol-based hand gels applied to human skin are drugs, and must be covered by FDA's Over-the-Counter (OTC) Drug Review or by an FDA-approved new drug application to be legally marketed in the United States.”
Based on our research (and the text above), it doesn’t appear that the FDA “registers” hand sanitizers; it only approves them, which is a complex process far outside the scope of this review.
Like food products though, the FDA has a list of Generally Recognized As Safe ingredients (GRAS) that, as long as they’re included in the correct concentration, don’t necessarily require full approval. In other words, if you made a hand sanitizer with 0.1% or less benzalkonium chloride, the FDA wouldn’t necessarily require that your product go through a complete review process before being released to the public.
In short, just because the active ingredient in Goldshield may be “FDA registered,” this doesn’t mean that it’s been formally reviewed or approved by the FDA, which is an important distinction.
What about other hand sanitizers that use benzalkonium chloride?
Similar Products To Goldshield
We’ve alluded to it several times already, but now we’ll just come right out and say it: If you’re looking for a non-alcohol hand sanitizer, you literally have thousands of options to choose from.
Sure, searching online can give you a good idea of just how many non-alcohol hand sanitizers there are out there, but they’re so popular you’ll almost certainly be able to find a couple options at your local pharmacy—and often for much less than Goldshield.
Speaking of which, how much does Goldshield cost?
Although Goldshield manufactures a whole line of products, including a surface cleaner and antimicrobial agent, the minimum amount of hand sanitizer you can purchase is a 4-pack for $23. This brings the price down to about $5.85 per bottle, although some competing alcohol-free hand sanitizers can be purchased for under $4.
All Goldshield purchases come with a 30-day refund policy, less S&H charges. But keep in mind that this only applies to “product returned in unopened, unused, like-new, 100% resalable condition and in the original manufacturer's packaging.” In order to request a refund, you’ll need to call customer service at 516-375-2927.
Given all of this, what’s the final verdict regarding Goldshield?
Should You Get Germ-Free with Goldshield?
Goldshield, like most of the hundreds of other hand sanitizers that use benzalkonium chloride, will probably do a fairly decent job of ridding your hands of germs. The question here isn’t one of efficacy though, it’s one of value.
Although there’s not much a price difference between Goldshield and the sub-$4 alcohol-free hand sanitizers you might find locally, purchasing from a nearby retailer could save you a decent chunk of change in non-refundable S&H charges if you’re not satisfied. You’ll also be able to return locally bought products much more quickly.
Given this, unless you’re interested in purchasing large quantities, we’re not sure if it’s necessarily worth spending the extra time and money buying Goldshield online. However, the company appears to be reputable and to stand behind their products.
Did you purchase Goldshield? Do you think it provided a solid value for your money? Tell us about it by leaving a review below!