When the FDA first started actually looking into it back in 2013, the agency gave the manufacturers of antibacterial hand soaps one year to provide data on both the safety and effectiveness of the ingredients they were using. And for all 19 ingredients now nixed after today’s rule, the data just… wasn’t there. Either it wasn’t submitted at all or what did come in wasn’t sufficient to show that the ingredients were useful.
Meanwhile, evidence pointing the other way continued to mount. For example: while the FDA review was underway, one study found that triclosan — increasingly associated with risks to fetal development — was found in 100% of the pregnant women who participated in the study. Yes, literally all of them.
Manufacturers have, meanwhile, been moving much faster than the feds. Perhaps sensing the writing on the wall, many have long since taken action to cut triclosan from their products.