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What is a Universal Wipe?

What is a Universal Wipe?

Universal wipes are disposable wipes impregnated with a disinfectant solution. As per their name, they can be used to clean a broad range of surfaces. Because of this, universal disinfectant wipes usually employ a gentle, all-purpose solution and target a broad spectrum of potentially infectious agents. 

The cleaning or disinfecting solution used in universal wipes should:

  • Be gentle on the skin so that the wipes can be used without the need for disposable gloves.
  • Be non-corrosive to most common non-porous surface materials like metal.
  • Kill a broad spectrum of germs, bacteria, viruses, and yeasts.
  • Have the ability to clean as well as disinfect.

What is broad-spectrum efficacy?

According to the EPA, a ‘broad spectrum’ disinfectant is defined as being effective against bacteria, fungi, and viruses, specifically:

  1. Gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria
  2. At least one pathogenic fungi
  3. At least one enveloped and one non-enveloped virus

What are gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria?

Most gram-positive bacteria live inside the body harmlessly and are known as ‘resident flora’. But there are some pathogenic gram-positive bacteria. See the table below for some examples. Gram-positive bacteria cells are covered in a thick, absorbent outer layer. This is what helps them become stained blue or purple during gram testing.

Gram-negative bacteria have a hard, thinner outer shell that does not become stained during gram testing. Gram-negative bacteria are harder to kill due to their protective outer layer. They can also cause more harm when their cell wall is disturbed. Gram-negative bacteria are generally harmful to humans and animals. They can also be resistant to many drugs, including antibiotics.

Gram-Positive Bacteria Examples

Gram-Negative Bacteria Examples


Escherichia coli


Salmonella, and other Enterobacteriaceae









So, what’s in the formula that makes universal wipes so effective against so many different potentially harmful agents? What do they do exactly, and how should they be used? We answer all these questions in our blog.

What to Look for When Buying Universal Wipes

Universal cleaning wipes are used in healthcare and other settings every day to keep surfaces and objects clean and keep harmful microorganisms to a minimum. Make sure you find a product that does what it says it will. Here’s what to look out for when shopping for universal wipes.

What are universal green wipes used for? And where can universal wipes be used? Find out in our blog.

A Trusted Supplier

The volume of fake disinfectant products on the market makes it difficult to know whether you’re buying from a genuine supplier. With the number of counterfeit products filtering past Amazon’s quality control and the ambiguity between real and fake product reviews, it’s worth buying from a trusted supplier—especially when it comes to infection control.

Search for a trusted brand to buy your universal antibacterial wipes directly to ensure you’re getting the real thing from a vetted supplier. It’s relatively easy to spot a trusted supplier by their reputation. They will have positive reviews and testimonials across multiple review sites. You might also be able to find them on social media.

A trusted supplier is also one that has been around for a long time—an indicator that they’ve been doing things right and have built up a customer base. Often a company’s about page will tell you that they’ve been in the market, like Steroplast, which has been supplying infection control consumables for over 25 years. 

A reliable, genuine brand is also likely to have certain certifications that prove its quality. For example, Steroplast is the exclusive supplier to the British Red Cross and supplier to St John Ambulance.

The CE Mark of Equivalent

All products sold to UK consumers need to undergo tests to prove they are safe to use. This is especially important for healthcare products that are used to keep environments safe where vulnerable people could be exposed to them.

The UK is part of the European Economic Area (EEA), and as such, all UK-sold products must pass assessments on health, safety, and environmental protection. The CE mark declares that a product has passed these assessments and met all legal requirements to be sold to UK consumers. 

Check your universal sanitising wipes for the CE mark; you should find it on the body of the product or the packaging.

PDI Sani-Cloth Universal Wipes are used in healthcare facilities throughout the UK as standard disposable disinfectant wipes. Created by PDI, a brand with 40 years in the infection control and prevention industry, this is a product you can trust without a doubt. They are also approved and used in NHS hospitals.

What You Get With Sani-Cloth AF Universal Wipes

  • The wipes are tested to be PHMB-free.
  • PDI Universal Wipes are tested to be effective against Covid-19.
  • They have a broad spectrum kill with low contact time.
  • Alcohol-free wipes can be used around patients with respiratory difficulties.
  • The product is packaged in containers with easy dispense lids that keep the next wipe fresh and moist and protect the rest of the wipes from contamination.

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