In the wake of COVID-19, social media has been a valuable tool in preventing the disease, emphasising the importance of social distancing and helping people feel like they’re not alone.
In Italy, Italians are sharing videos of themselves in quarantine singing songs of resilience and of their country with their neighbours and from their balconies, shortly before Stan Twitter hijacked it into a meme. In Vietnam, a choreographer made a TikTok dance based on a government music video on how to avoid catching coronavirus, and it kinda legit slaps.
And in America, well, someone licked a toilet seat on a plane just bcuz she could… truly Darwinism at its finest, folks.
Anyway, in more uplifting news, TikTok and the World Health Organisation (WHO) are working together to help spread awareness on appropriate preventive measures against COVID-19. Namely, with their #SafeHands challenge, they’re telling anyone with more than half a brain cell to wash our damn hands.
And, it’s not only watering my non-existent crops but it’s saving lives.
What is the #SafeHands challenge?
The #SafeHands challenge is a new TikTok hashtag designed to get people to wash their hands thoroughly and to a song that’s at least 40 seconds long. In fact, as per WHO and our medical chief officer Professor Brendan Murphy in today’s speech, it’s not only recommended to wash your hands at least once an hour, but also anytime you touch something that’s been touched by others in the public, like hand rails on a bus to machines at the gym.
Although, as celebs keep reminding us, the best precaution is to just stay at home and socially distance.
Why do I need to wash my hands so much?
As BBC Robot Wars judge and science author Dr. Lucy Rogers shared in a demonstration below using black pepper (resembling bacteria), oil (to represent fat) and water, when you touch a public surface, bacteria clings to your body and becomes undetectable to the eye.
But, when you wash your hands with soap or alcohol-based solution, the soap breaks down the fat that contains the virus and causes the virus to fall apart.
Stay safe! Wash your hands! ##SafeHands @who♬ original sound – fallontonight
As the description on TikTok reads, “take 40 seconds, turn on the faucet, and show us what you’re thinking while washing and making sure you have #safehands.”
Here are some of our faves
Currently, as of writing this, there are over 740m videos using the #SafeHands challenge.
From families bunkering down to self-isolating teens, people are washing their hands to the tunes of Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive,” BlackPink’s “Kill This Love” (proper hygiene in your area) and the theme to this damn virus on TikTok, “Corona Time.”
And people’s reactions have been, in true TikTok fashion, kinda genius and creative af.
just in case singing Happy Birthday is getting kinda boring. ##foryou♬ original sound – ohdamnjam
Celebs are getting on board with #SafeHands, too
And it wouldn’t be a viral TikTok trend without some celebrities getting on board and using their social platform for good… and to advertise their music ofc. Girls’ gotta work, especially when their gigs are getting cancelled.
As far as Nicole Scherzinger sees it, we don’t *have* to dress in pjs or the same shirt for the third day if we’re stuck in our homes. We can be sexy, dress up and be badass, too. See me with these #SafeHands.
Then there’s Kristin Chenoweth singing… something? Lord knows what’s going on with her since Wicked and Glee.
And then, of course, the legends themselves, Gloria Gaynor and Mariah Carey, proving that if we wash our hands, we will survive.
Cleaning our hands to 20 seconds of Ol’ Dirty Bastard! ##SafeHands♬ original sound – mariahcarey
Or, if none of these work for you, you can always follow the #SafeHands advice of Tim Pearce, a kind and gentle old man and the Associate Curator of Mollusks at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, U.S., and sing about slugs.
Look at the end of the day, if we survived Cats, we can survive this, too. We have a Harry Styles Tiny Desk Concert, soon, Animal Crossing, *websites* and Bon Appétit to get us through this period of self-isolation. But, if you are worried, know that there are people who will listen.