Cleaned Your Desk Recently? If Not, You Might Want To Read This...

Our office hygiene habits are truly gross...

how dirty is your desk

Our office hygiene habits are truly gross...

You probably pride yourself on your hygiene, showering every day, keeping your bedroom tidy and even flossing on occasion, when you actually remember.

But according to this latest research, you can chuck that pride out of the window, as we're a nation of dirty deskers.

Viking Direct conducted a scientific experiment from the comfort of their own office to try and find out why colds and flus are ever more common at this time of year - and to let us know about the precautions we can take to avoid getting the yearly sniffles.

Using Petri dishes, the Viking crew tested their office's most-touched items, including the photocopier, keyboards, desk surfaces, computer mice, door handles, telephone mouthpieces, chewed pens and pencils and hot water boiler to see just how revolting they were.

They inoculated the agar plates using sterilised cotton buds, then left them in a warm place for a few days to see what would happen.

And guess what happened? Suitable grossness ensued.

'After five days, the bacterial and fungal cultures had grown to visibly revolting levels,' the Viking team said. 'Given that this was the first time our team had done an experiment like this since their school days, we were really pleased with the way the plates had turned out.

'We were also rather repulsed by the contents of the plates, as it highlighted the diversity of germs that might be lurking on most of the surfaces in the office.'


Particularly disgusting office locations included the desks ('the trend for workers to eat 'al desko' is also likely responsible for some of the microorganisms present on this particular plate') and the photocopier ('the copier seemed to be far dirtier than we would have expected - we concluded that this was likely due the fact it's used by a wide variety of people but hadn't been assigned to anybody to be cleaned regularly').

The team urged office workers to keep their desks and surrounding areas clean and to regularly wipe surfaces to avoid the spread of bacteria.

Right, we're off to buy some baby wipes...

The leading destination for fashion, beauty, shopping and finger-on-the-pulse views on the latest issues. Marie Claire's travel content helps you delight in discovering new destinations around the globe, offering a unique – and sometimes unchartered – travel experience. From new hotel openings to the destinations tipped to take over our travel calendars, this iconic name has it covered.