Why you need to clean your handbag...

ABC7- By Denise Dador

Before you run to the bathroom to wash your hands, hang on. Microbiologists say once you stick them in your handbag or your pockets, you'll be exposed to disease causing germs all over again. Bacteria hide in places you least suspect.

What's in your purse? There is more in your purse than money and makeup, how about the cold and flu viruses, E.coli, salmonella even MRSA?

University of Arizona microbiologist Kelly Reynolds, says women's purses routinely harbor millions of bacteria, and not just on the outside.

"In a woman's purse there are things like your cell phone, your makeup, compact, your pen, that you never think to disinfect," said Reynolds.

You make a point to disinfect this, but probably not this. Thirty-percent of purses test positive for fecal bacteria.

"They have a lot more germs than a toilet seat," said Reynolds.

There is a meter to measure germs.

"So we can swab the surface, put it in the germ meter and get a really quick readout in about 10 seconds of how dirty that environment is," said Reynolds.

Administrative associate Nancy Casady put her purse to the test. Germy place number one, her plastic pillbox.

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