Antimicrobial vs Antibacterial

Have you ever been to a cleaning aisle of a supermarket and randomly picked up any antimicrobial product? If you think that all germs control and infection safety products are almost the same and have similar benefits, then you are mistaken. 

In today’s times market is replete with products having antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and antimicrobial benefits. Usually, these products are confused with each other and even used for wrong purposes rather than their intended uses.

These two terms antimicrobial and antibacterial are often used interchangeably and are considered the same. Here, we are here to make you well versed with antimicrobial and antibacterial. We also help you to understand how to choose the right one to get most of these products for your hygiene and germ protection needs.


Antimicrobial is an umbrella term used to describe products designed to provide integral protection from all microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, protozoans, and viruses. 

Antimicrobial formulations are made up of chemical agents that kill or eliminate all kinds of microorganisms.


The term antibacterial implies the products that specifically either kill bacteria or stop them from growing to prevent infection and diseases. Antibacterial attack the bacterial cell wall and destroy the key processes and major structural components.

Antibacterials can be further divided into two categories –

  • Bactericidal – kills the bacteria
  • Bacteriostatic – suppresses the growth of bacteria (keep them in stationary phase)

Also Read: What Does “Eliminates 99.9% Germs” Label Mean?

What to consider when choosing your Antimicrobial and Antibacterial products?

A wide array of antimicrobial and antibacterial products are available in the market. It is imperative to understand these products may vary in their chemical composition, safety profile, and mode of action. Hence, taking some time to read product labels is a prerequisite. This may help in understanding whether the product will be able to serve the purpose of optimum safety and protection against microbial infection.

Antimicrobial & Antibacterial Testing of Products with MIS

At Microbe Investigations, we offer a comprehensive array of antimicrobial testing services to assess the efficacy claims of antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal products. We work with a wide variety of industries that innovate textiles, plastics, coatings, and surface disinfectants and help them claim their products’ efficacy to have for microbial protection.  

To perform the tests, we adhere to all principles of international standards such as International Organization for Standardization (ISO), American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC), American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), and Japanese Industrial Standard (JIS).

Our microbiology experts take complete responsibility for the customer’s project requirements and ensure the accuracy of end results with the use of various methodologies.

To get any microbiology testing service, contact us here 


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