Make Your Own Hand Sanitizers- It’s Simple and Easy

Hand sanitizers have been one of the most essential things one could own during this virus outbreak. Apart from washing your hands with soap and water, which is the most advised way to keep away from the virus, CDC, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended the use of hand sanitizers containing 60% alcohol.

However, as the demand for hand sanitizers grew, its supply fell. Shops ran out of hand sanitizers in no time. But, the brighter side is, it’s almost a cakewalk to make hand sanitizers at home. It takes just three ingredients to make sanitizers at home.

What do we need?

The following ingredients are needed to make a sanitizer:

1.Rubbing alcohol (99 % volume of alcohol) or Isopropyl.

2.Aloe vera gel

3.Any essential oil like lavender oil or tea tree oil. Lemon juice can also be used instead of the essential oil.

As per the CDC, 60% is the minimum amount of alcohol needed to destroy the germs. This can be achieved if you keep the alcohol to aloe vera proportion 2:1.

How to make it?

Several recipes and combinations have been advised by doctors worldwide. We will look at three different ways of making a hand sanitizer.

As per Dr. Rishi Desai, pour 3/4th cup of rubbing alcohol or isopropyl, 1/4 cup of aloe vera gel, and 10 drops of essential oil or lemon juice in a container and mix. Stir and beat the mixture well to make it like a gel.

According to Jagdish Khubchandani, PhD, associate professor of health science at Ball State University, use two parts isopropyl alcohol or ethanol (minimum 91 % to maximum 99 % alcohol), one part aloe vera, and a few drops of eucalyptus, clove, peppermint or any other essential oil. However, he has mentioned a few measures which are: making the sanitizer in a clean space, washing hands properly before making it, using a spoon for mixing it, the alcohol used must not be diluted, mixing components until they blend, and not touching it before it is ready for use.

If you want to make a large quantity of hand sanitizer, the World Health Organisation has suggested using ethanol or isopropyl alcohol, hydrogen peroxide glycerol, boiled cold water or sterile distilled water.

Safety concern

These mixtures are performed under supervision and with medical expertise. However, if we are left with no option but to make it, like now, it must be done with proper caution and after proper research. The disproportionate mixture can lead to inefficiency of the sanitizer, which means it will not be able to kill the virus as it is supposed to. It can also cause irritation and skin hazards. You may also be exposed to poisonous chemicals via inhalation.

Do’s and Don’ts of usage of hand sanitizer

Take some of the sanitizer in one palm and rub it for 40 to 60 seconds until dry. Don’t use it if the hands are dirty or greasy. Wash them first.

Germs killed by hand sanitizer

CDC suggests that hand sanitizers can kill several microbes that stick to our skin. It kills disease-causing pathogens and also the novel coronavirus.

Difference between handwashing and hand sanitizing

According to the CDC, washing hands is a must to ward off the virus. Priority should be placed on washing hands, and hand sanitizers should be used only when water and soap are unavailable. The correct usage of both can help to stay away from the disease. It has been advised to wash hands pre and post meals, after using the washroom, after sneezing or coughing, and after touching areas which might be infected.

The CDC has laid down guidelines for washing hands which includes using clean water, and washing hands with soap for 30 seconds, back and front.

Water and soap is always the first and best option. But homemade hand sanitizers too serve the purpose, if you run out of soap and water. Alcohol in the hand sanitizer is highly effective in killing the germs. So, if your nearest medical store runs out of hand sanitizer, don’t panic. You know what to do!