These are the first two approved disinfectant products that have been tested against COVID-19.
This illustration photo shows a bottle of Lysol disinfectant spray in Culver City, California, on April 24, 2020, amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. - Top White House coronavirus advisor Deborah Birx shrank in horror and around the nation comedians sharpened their pens: President Donald Trump had just asked if virus victims couldn't be injected with disinfectant. Even as a new poll shows most Americans wish the former real estate magnate would leave science to the experts, Trump on April 23 evening hit a new high in the annals of amateur presidential doctoring. (Photo by Chris DELMAS / AFP) (Photo by CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images)
Credit: CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved two Lysol products as effective against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The two products, the first approved by the EPA for such germ-killing activity, can kill the virus when they're used on hard, non-porous surfaces.

Lysol Disinfectant Spray and Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist both received the nod, the federal agency announced earlier this week. Both showed in laboratory testing that they could kill the virus two minutes after contact. These two Lysol products are now the first products to show they meet the EPA's criteria for use against COVID-19 (also known as SARS-CoV-2).

Earlier this year, the EPA released a list of more than 420 products they believed were strong enough to fend off harder-to-kill viruses like COVID-19. However, none of those products had been tested against COVID-19. With this research from Lysol, the list of products that have been tested directly to kill this virus begins.

"The EPA's approval recognizes that using Lysol Disinfectant Spray can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on hard, non-porous surfaces," wrote Rahul Kadyan, EVP NA Hygiene for Reckitt Benckiser, the parent company of Lysol, in a statement.

No disinfecting or cleaning products can claim that they kill a particular virus or bacterium without EPA authorization. To get that distinction, the brand has to submit laboratory testing for review. If a company claims they can kill a specific pathogen without EPA's approval, the products may be recalled and the company fined.

While these two Lysol products are the first to prove they kill COVID-19 directly, they are unlikely to be the last. Many companies are working right now to show their products' effectiveness against the virus so more consumers can rest assured their cleaning and disinfecting isn't all for naught.

For all disinfectant products to work their best, you'll need to use them properly. The EPA has a handy PDF that provides step-by-step instruction for the best method of cleaning and disinfecting.

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