What is a Soap Dispenser?

Liquid soap dispensers can be refilled and reused.
Some people prefer liquid soap rather than bar soap when washing their hands.
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  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 18 December 2014
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A soap dispenser is a small or large device found in kitchens and bathrooms throughout the world. You’ll find commercial versions of the soap dispenser in public bathrooms, and you can even buy your soap in a simple dispenser, which can then be refilled by buying larger bottles of soap. Most dispensers let out liquid, foam, or cream soap, and rely on a pump mechanism in order to release soap.

While the most common soap dispensers are used by depressing the handle, to pull up soap from the inside of the bottle, there are some that work a little differently. Foam dispensers, which use a much lower viscosity soap, combine soap with air as it makes its way through the pump, producing foam instead of liquid soap. These may be a little easier to use for some because it’s pretty obvious if the soap is fully covering your hands when the foam coats them.


Another type of soap dispenser just gaining popularity in updated public bathrooms is the modern automatic dispenser. This normally works by using a sensor to detect that hands are underneath the dispenser. When such detection is made, the soap dispenser releases a small amount of soap into the hands. Many find these dispensers preferable because they do not require you to use a pump when your hands are still dirty. Some kitchen and bathroom sinks are also designed with a soap dispenser installed, usually made of brass or stainless steel, which eliminates cluttering the sink counters with an extra bottle.

Though buying soap in a soap dispenser is usually the easiest and cheapest way of obtaining one, there are a number of specially designed and decorative ones you can purchase to go with your kitchen or bathroom décor. These can come in various metal finishes, in porcelain, or in sturdy plastic with silly or lovely designs. Price is exceptionally variable, with range in price of about $5-75 US Dollars (USD).

If you’re short on space in your bathrooms, you might consider purchasing a soap dispenser that is combined with a toothpaste holder, and a holder for toothbrushes. Some complain that it's pretty easy to get a small amount of soap on toothbrushes this way, and brushing your teeth with a soapy toothbrush is an unpleasant experience. For those who’d like to avoid this possible risk, there are many styles and shapes to choose from that can fit on almost any kitchen or bathroom sink.


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