Experts say that washing your hands for 20 seconds — the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice — is the best way to prevent contracting the novel coronavirus. But one 17-year-old boy wants to make washing your hands a little more fun.
William Gibson is the brains behind not-for-profit Wash Your Lyrics, a website that allows you to choose a song and have a handwashing poster created especially for you. The poster, based on a diagram released by the U.K.’s National Health Service, displays a 13-step handwashing routine and has been making the rounds on social media recently with different lyrics instead of instructions.
To use the website, Wash Your Lyrics, simply enter the title of your favourite song and artist (like "Party In The USA" and "Miley Cyrus") and the site automatically generates a poster that pairs the lyrics to a 13-step hand washing routine. Reportedly Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” is the most popular choice so far.
According to the BBC, “about 175,000 posters were generated on his website in its first three days.” Twitter is now filled with newly-devout hand washers sharing their new favourite hand-washing music featuring the music of bands like BTS, Daft Punk, Rick Astley and many other songs.
“I had a feeling it would be popular but didn’t think it would go quite this big,” he told the BBC. “It was weird seeing celebrities I’ve followed for years on Instagram posting about it.” “It just felt so sad singing Happy Birthday to myself every time I washed my hands,” he said.
The lyrics generator isn’t perfect though. Since it’s pulling lyrics from Genius, sometimes it mistakes things like “(Chorus)” and “(Verse 1”) as actual parts of the song. Also, the lyrics start at the beginning of the song, which is a bummer if you’re trying to scrub your hands to your favourite chorus. However, Gibson recently expanded the hand-washing lyrics generator so you can add your own custom lyrics to the poster. So long as you input at least 13 lines of text, the Wash Your Lyrics generator will create a hand-washing poster of your own design.
It's the most fun way to make washing your hands seem less boring and less "chore-like." So if you want to spice up your simple hand-washing schedule, using Wash Your Lyrics might make it slightly more fun.