Wednesday, September 26th, 2007
Sanitizing Pacifiers with Ultraviolet Light
Here are two early entries in the niche market of UVC baby gear sanitizers. You can expect to see UVC products as standard fare on baby store shelves in the coming years.
UVC is a type of ultraviolet light known as germicidal light. It has been used for decades in hospitals to sterilize air and is now making its way into consumer products such as a recently reviewed vacuum cleaner. UVC can kill mold, bacteria and even viruses within seconds by disrupting the cellular DNA of microorganisms. It’s just light, no chemicals. Watch a 1.35 minute informational video from WebMD.
Pacifier Sanitizer by Redmon is a portable ultraviolet sanitizer that holds up to four pacifiers, bottle nipples or teethers. It runs on 2 AA batteries and reportedly kills germs within 5 minutes of operationâ€”shutting off by itself.
Its dimensions are 5.25" x 2.5" x 4" and will fit in a good sized diaper bag. Buy it for under $30 on Amazon.
Note that the company uses the word "sanitizer" instead of "sterilizer." Although UVC light kills germs, it doesn’t wash them away. It’s still helpful to have a faucet for rinsing off major particles after you have dropped a pacifier on the ground.
Ultra-Clean Pacifier Sanitizer by UV Solutions is a small, pocket-size UVC unit for a single pacifier. It also runs on 2 AA batteries and kills within 5 seconds (I wonder if that’s a typo — seconds or minutes?). Insert your pacifier until it "clicks" in place, and then wait for a flashing red LED to turn off.
Unfortunately, this product doesn’t appear to be on the retail market yet. A note on the website which is intended for pacifier manufacturers explains: "Designed for specific pacifier shape to promote brand loyalty in replacements."
The compact size is nice, but somehow I think I’ll buy the first device, the one that doesn’t care what brand of pacifier I buy, and also works with bottle nipples. But you know this pocket one will show up on store shelves and be a hit anyway.
Another UVC product on the horizon is the Pipila UV Pacifier Sterilizer. Apparently it was demo’d at the ABC Kids Expo this month, but only garnered one paragraph of coverage on one web site, and I was unable to locate the manufacturer’s website. It will be interesting to see whether Pipila is a branded version of the pocket-size Ultra-Clean Pacifier Sanitizer, or an entirely new product.