While the internet is alive with lists of alternative handwashing songs, one of the best lists comes from Jen Monnier, writing for the LA Times.
Although humming Happy Birthday twice is the standard duration for washing your hands correctly, Monnier’s list has the best cross-section of tunes, with something for everyone.
The alternative handwashing songs
While Happy Birthday needs to be sung twice, the hits in Monnier’s list have 20-second choruses, so only need to be sung or hummed once.
Prince, Raspberry Beret
She wore a raspberry beret / The kind you find in a secondhand store / Raspberry beret / And if it was warm she wouldn’t wear much more / Raspberry beret / I think I love her
Beyoncé, Love On Top
Baby it’s you / You’re the one I love / You’re the one I need / You’re the only one I see / Come on baby it’s you / You’re the one that gives your all / You’re the one I can always call / When I need to make everything stop / Finally you put my love on top
Dolly Parton, Jolene
Jolene, Jolene, Jolene, Jolene / I’m begging of you please don’t take my man / Jolene, Jolene, Jolene, Jolene / Please don’t take him just because you can
It’s gonna take a lot to drag me away from you / There’s nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do / I bless the rains down in Africa / Gonna take some time to do the things we never had
Lizzo, Truth Hurts
Why men great ‘til they gotta be great? / Don’t text me, tell it straight to my face / Best friend sat me down in the salon chair / Shampoo press, get you out of my hair / Fresh photos with the bomb lighting / New man on the Minnesota Vikings / Truth hurts, needed something more exciting
Fleetwood Mac, Landslide
Well, I’ve been afraid of changin’ / ‘Cause I’ve built my life around you / But time makes you bolder / Even children get older / And I’m gettin’ older too
Eminem, Lose Yourself
You better lose yourself in the music, the moment / You own it, you better never let it go / You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow / This opportunity comes once in a lifetime / You better lose yourself in the music, the moment / You own it, you better never let it go / You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow / This opportunity comes once in a lifetime
Natasha Bedingfield, Unwritten
Feel the rain on your skin / No one else can feel it for you / Only you can let it in / No one else, no one else / Can speak the words on your lips / Drench yourself in words unspoken / Live your life with arms wide open / Today is where your book begins / The rest is still unwritten
Belinda Carlisle, Heaven on Earth
Ooh, baby, do you know what that’s worth? / Ooh, heaven is a place on Earth / They say in heaven love comes first / We’ll make heaven a place on Earth / Ooh, heaven is a place on Earth
Culture Club, Karma Chameleon
Karma, karma, karma, karma, karma chameleon / You come and go, you come and go / Loving would be easy if your colors were like my dreams / Red, gold and green, red, gold and green
We hope you enjoy this playlist of alternative handwashing songs, and use them to ensure you have the cleanest hands possible.
Here’s our Medical Assistant, Michelle, showing you how to wash your hands correctly by humming Happy Birthday twice.
The Floating Hospital operates a main clinic in Long Island City. Additionally, we have satellite clinics at shelters, public housing, and assessment centers throughout the city.