No Purell? No problem!
You can easily make your hand sanitizer at home with just a few simple ingredients.
Washing your hands with water and soap is one of the best ways to keep your hands free of all kinds of viruses and germs. However, when soap is not available, and you are out, the CDC or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that you can use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content to keep germs at bay.
The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) ensures that mass-produced hand sanitizers in the US contain a minimum of 60% alcohol upon purchase by regulating and keeping a check on the production of sanitizers.
Commercially mass-produced hand sanitizers are recommended because you cannot accurately measure the alcohol content in homemade sanitizers. However, you can still easily make an effective hand sanitizer right at your home. Here is how!
A small warning before we begin
The following recipe for a hand sanitizer is intended to be used carefully, with complete precision and safety measures. Only use the hand sanitizer when handwashing facilities are not available. If you develop any rash or irritation or ingest the contents by mistake, please visit your nearest health physician.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak in 2020, the United States saw a shortage of hand sanitizers in the markets. Doctors in Pennsylvania and other states started making their own sanitizers.
The doctors were using homemade hand sanitizers in their offices. The little supply they had of mass-produced sanitizers was reserved for patients with whom they were interacting and treating. According to the doctors, sanitizers are not a bad idea and are not really challenging to make.
When followed closely, the recipe for homemade hand sanitizer should produce the right sanitizer, effective enough with the right amount of alcohol concentration.
So, how to make hand sanitizer at home?
You will require the following ingredients:
- 1 part of aloe-vera gel or glycerin
- 2 parts of isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol with a minimum 91% concentration
- Any essential oil (this is an option for scent)
- A clean container for storing. An airtight container would work great.
- A spoon or whisk for mixing
- Combine all the ingredients, aloe vera gel/glycerin, isopropyl alcohol, in a clean container.
- To get one cup of sanitizer, combine one-third cup of the aloe vera gel or glycerin with two-third cup of rubbing alcohol or isopropyl alcohol.
- Mix all the ingredients thoroughly with either a spoon or a whisk to ensure that the alcohol is distributed evenly. - Add 4-5 drops of your desired essential oil if you want to. This step is optional. - Store the sanitizer in the airtight container. Alcohol evaporates with time; therefore, you must use an air-tight container to keep your homemade sanitizer safe for more extended use.
Things to keep in mind If you are trying to make hand sanitizer at home, make sure you keep the following things in mind: 1. Ensure you are making hand sanitizer in a clean space. Wipe down and disinfectant the countertops you are making on with diluted bleach solution or any disinfectant. 2. Wash your hands with soap and water before you start making the sanitizer 3. Use clean containers and spoons/whisk 4. Make sure the isopropyl alcohol or the rubbing alcohol you use is not diluted before use. 5. Mix the ingredients well until they are blended 6. Do not touch the prepared mixture until ready to use
WHO formula for hand sanitizer
For preparing a larger batch of home-made hand sanitizer, the World Health Organization has provided a formula: 1. Isopropyl alcohol or ethanol 2. Hydrogen peroxide 3. Glycerol 4. Sterile, distilled, or boiled cold water
Is the homemade hand sanitizer safe to use?
If you are searching the internet “how to make hand sanitizer?”, you are going to be bombarded with multiple guides and recipes. However, are the hand sanitizers you make at home safe? The recipes, including the one we presented to you, are meant to be used by anyone, with the right expertise and resources, of course. Homemade hand sanitizers are recommended to be used in extreme situations when you are unsure if you can find another commercially available sanitizer or handwashing soap and water. Not measuring the ingredients before use or even not using the right ingredients can lead to: 1. Lack of efficacy. The sanitizer produced the wrong way will not effectively mitigate the risk of germs and viruses. 2. Irritation to the skin, even injuries and burns 3. Exposure and inhalation of hazardous chemicals Homemade hand sanitizers are not recommended for use by children. Children are susceptible to misusing hand sanitizers if not watched carefully, leading to a risk of injury.
Using homemade hand sanitizer correctly. Homemade sanitizers are usually runnier in comparison to mass-produced sanitizers. Therefore, it can sometimes be a little tricky to use the same. A pump container or a squeeze bottle can help using your hand sanitizer easier, without any spillage. To use your homemade sanitizer effectively, squeeze out only a coin-sized amount, enough to cover the entire surface of your hands. Rub your hands together, coating the sanitizer on your hands thoroughly. Continue rubbing your hands together for at least 20 seconds until they are dry.
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