Creating Hand-hygiene Solutions for the Urban Poor

Project Brief

Clean Hands, Inc. (CHI) is a UK-based social business looking to develop hand hygiene products specifically for those living in developing markets and lacking access to a toilet or running water at their home.

They engaged with Quicksand initially to identify consumer insights and market opportunities, then to conduct a “proof of principle” study that would test a few product concepts, along with positioning. The intent was to come up with the most relevant and impactful product along with the appropriate packaging/marketing for such. The broader goal was also to deepen their understanding of the entire ecosystem to provide guidance for further product development and deployment


Quicksand's role was to lead research with target market users in slums in Bangalore and engage with experts to design a total prototype solution that could be tested and could provide the basis for further action by CHI. Based on initial quick testing of the lead product and expert inputs, it was decided that it was too early to focus on a single product direction for the purpose of the study.

The study took on three separate product directions to be tested at various points, with post-defecation use being the unique proposition. The choice of three different directions implied developing functional prototypes for all three and planning separate product placements and research sessions for each.


The project culminated in three distinct product concepts, with accompanying positioning, packaging and pricing inputs. This was captured in a detailed document that shared the process as well as key insights, along with key product attributes for each of the three concepts This was paired with an executive summary for a quick overview of findings, as well as a series of films that shared stories from the field research. In addition to in-home placements of the products and the accompanying user research, workshops with experts and users enabled a deep understanding of the three product concepts, in terms of user acceptance and desirability, as well as viability and costs of production, packaging. This paved the way for CHI to hone in on the most promising concept for further development and market testing.

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