Could something in your soap be messing with your sex life?
When you’re in the shower and you catch a glimpse of the ingredients listed on your body wash, you usually assume they’re all good for you. For the most part, they are—but even some of those well-meaning chemicals can have unintended consequences, like the antibacterial chemical triclosan.
Once a popular option to put in soap, deodorant, and body wash to help kill germs, studies found that triclosan “could disrupt sex and thyroid hormones and other bodily functions,” according to CBS News. A study from researchers at the University of California, Davis also showed that the chemical can sometimes cause muscle weakness and impair muscle activity.
The Food and Drug Administration moved to ban triclosan—and 18 other antibacterial ingredients, including triclocarban, which is found in many bar soaps—ffrom being used in antibacterial soaps, with the FDA saying that soaps with the chemicals had “no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water.”
The ban will go into effect nationally in September 2017, but many companies have started to phase out any use of the chemicals in their products. The state of Minnesota didn’t feel like any of that was fast enough, so they're banning the use of triclosan starting on Jan. 1.
Even though this chemical was once widely used, it’s one less thing you’ll have to worry about when hopping in the shower—or into bed with your girlfriend.