The “cure for the common cold”—as well as other viral and bacterial infections that cause bronchitis and diarrhea—is prevention through good hand washing, covering aerosols produced during sneezes and keeping surfaces clean. The Hohenstein Institute, Bönnnigheim, Germany, has demonstrated the benefits of copper-based fabric finishes in surface wipes that absorb 91 percent of viruses and eliminate 90 percent of those absorbed. One textile finish uses copper compounds and complexes applied in a sol-gel process; another uses copper pigments in a high-temperature dye process that incorporates the pigment into fibers through a slightly acid environment. Both finishes produced good evenness, skin-friendliness and effectiveness against viruses and bacteria for up to 15 washing cycles. The antiviral cleaning cloths may be of most assistance in hospitals, daycares, nursing homes and other communal settings where germs visit regularly.