For preventing the current time pandemic worldwide caused by the new coronavirus one handy solution for every individual is using a hand sanitizer as much as it is possible. This helps in preventing the spread of COVID-19 disease which is highly contagious.
However, due to immense demand sometimes it is difficult to get a hand sanitizer from the nearby retail store as due to the rapid demand of the hand sanitizer most retailers are facing a shortage of supply with respect to its demand. So to cope up with this issue today we have come up with an effective solution with an effective recipe to make homemade hand sanitizer which takes few simple steps and only three ingredients to get your ready to use hand sanitizer.
When it comes to prevent or reduce your risk of developing COVID-19 disease the first best option is washing hands with soap and water at least for 20 seconds on a more frequent basis. However, it is not possible to carry soap and water and wash your hands in any place or location. In such cases, the second most reliable option is using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent of alcohol as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Here you will get step by step guide on how to make your own DIY hand sanitizer to fight back with any highly infectious disease such as the new coronavirus infection. Also, you will get to know here how and when to use the hand sanitizer to ensure the best possible safety and protection of your health.
How do you make your own hand sanitizer at home?
While making your own hand sanitizer at home you need to be very careful while proportioning the key ingredients of your DIY recipe for hand sanitizer. The same rule is applicable for ingredients selection as well as because in the lack of proper ingredients your final product will not be as effective as it should be.
Means your sanitizer will not eliminate your risk of exposure to certain or all microbes. Also, it contains the risk of skin irritation, burns, and injury. If a proper ratio of key ingredients is not used in the DIY hand sanitizer then it may create a hazardous formula that increases your risk of exposure to hazardous chemicals through inhalation.
You need below mentioned few easily available ingredients while making your own hand sanitizer-
- Isopropylor rubbing alcohol (with 91 to 99% alcohol volume)
- Aloe vera gelor glycerin
- Essential oil such as lavender, tea tree oil, etc or you can also use lemon juice instead of it
- A clean container for mixing all the ingredients and an airtight container for storing the final product
- Whisk or spoon for mixing
- Mix the aloe vera gel or glycerin with Isopropyl or rubbing alcohol in a clean container. In order to make one cup of hand sanitizer, you need to combine 1/3 cup of aloe vera gel or glycerin with 2/3 cup of Isopropyl or rubbing alcohol.
- With the help of a spoon or whisk, mix the ingredients thoroughly to ensure that the alcohol gets well combined with gel.
- Once you find that the portion of alcohol is evenly distributed in aloe vera gel or glycerin then it’s time to add five drops of an essential oil or lemon juice. This is an optional step which entirely meant to improve the fragrance of your homemade sanitizer.
- Next store this prepared sanitizer in an airtight container as because the alcohol substance in the hand sanitizer naturally evaporates with time. So if you store it in an airtight container then it ensures that it will last longer with the same level of effectiveness. Try to use squeeze or pump bottle as it reduces the evaporation risk side by side makes your sanitizer easily accessible so you can use it anytime, anywhere.
- The key to making an effective hand sanitizer is to use 2:1 proportion formula of alcohol to aloe vera. In this way, in your final product, the content of alcohol will lie around 60% which is our primary goal to get an effective homemade sanitizer. This is the minimum level of alcohol in a hand sanitizer that is necessary to kill most of the germs as per the CDC Trusted source report. Using essential oil is optional for the DIY hand sanitizer however its usage adds a beautiful scent in it.
Follow the below-mentioned tips in order to make your hand sanitizer perfect and fully effective-
- Before making your DIY hand sanitizer it is very essential that your hands are well cleaned. So wash your hands thoroughly before starting the hand sanitizer making process.
- Make your hand sanitizer only in a clean space. You should wipe out the countertops beforehand with the help of a diluted bleach solution.
- For the perfect balance of your homemade hand sanitizer make sure the alcohol that you are using in the ingredient is not a diluted one.
- For mixing the ingredients use only a clean whisk or spoon and wash them beforehand.
- Mix all the ingredients properly until you get a well-blended, smoother formula.
- Do not touch this prepared mixture with your hands until it reaches to ready to use condition.
- In order to prepare a larger batch of hand sanitizer, the WHO recommends using the formula consisting of isopropyl alcohol or ethanol, hydrogen peroxide, glycerol, and sterile distilled or boiled cold water.
Is it safe to use a DIY hand sanitizer?
This is a vital question especially in these days when the high demand of hand sanitizers for preventing the risk of coronavirus has increased the necessity of making your own DIY hand sanitizer but whether is safe to use or not can only be decided based on the below mentioned detrimental factors-
- The hand sanitizer recipes like the one discussed above need to be prepared under the professional expertise and in the availability of necessary resources to get the safe and usable hand sanitizer at home.
- Remember the DIY hand sanitizer is only recommended to be used in an extreme situation when there is a lack of or unavailability of a commercial hand sanitizer. Also for preventing the risk of coronavirus frequent hand washing with soap and water is the first choice of health professionals and hand sanitizers are advised to be used only in the places and situations when you can’t find soap and water around you.
- The homemade hand sanitizer usage is not recommended for children. This is because children are highly suspected to use a hand sanitizer in an improper way that increases their risk of injury as well as a contracting infection.
How to use a hand sanitizer?
To ensure the best possible protection from germs it is vital that you use your hand sanitizer properly which you can do by following below-mentioned steps-
- Sprinkle or apply the hand sanitizer in your one palm of a hand.
- Rub both your hands together thoroughly so that the hand sanitizer can reach all areas of your hands even between the fingers gap until your hands turn dry.
- In case your hands are visibly dirty or greasy then you should wash your hands first with the soap and water and then sanitize it with the sanitizer.
- Rub your hands at least for 30 to 60 seconds or till your hands get dry. It takes a minimum of 60 seconds to sanitize your hands properly and sometimes more to kill most of the germs.
What germs are killed by a hand sanitizer?
As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Trusted Source, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol can effectively reduce the number of microbes existing on your hands.
A sanitizer is capable of destroying a wide array of pathogens or agents existing on your hands, responsible for causing different types of diseases including the new coronavirus, called SARS-CoV. Still, it is crucial to mention here that even the best alcohol-based sanitizer has some limitations hence it can’t remove all types of germs.
As per the CDC, the usage of hand sanitizer doesn’t eliminate some potentially harmful chemicals. Also, it is not very effective in killing some germs including norovirus, Cryptosporidium (responsible for cryptosporidiosis), and Clostridium aka C. diff.
Apart from this, you can’t expect a hand sanitizer to eliminate harmful chemicals or kill the existing germs on hand if your hands are greasy or visibly dirty until you wash it with soap and water. The situations when this may happen include after working in a yard, handling food, playing an outdoor sport, and gardening.
So for the best result, it is advised to use a handwash instead of a hand sanitizer in case your hands look dirty or slimy.
What is the best among handwashing and hand sanitizer?
Both hand washing and hand sanitizer have their specific benefits and usage however for the best result we can say that you need to know correct timing like at what situation a sanitizer will work best over handwashing and vice-versa.
When you will manage to use both these hand cleaning and disinfecting techniques on the right timing then you can easily reduce your risk of contracting the new coronavirus. Also, it gives protection against other illnesses such as common cold and seasonal flues like symptoms.
Though both of them are effective in their specific purpose, however, the CDC always give first priority and recommendation to washing hands with soap and water as the best measure to prevent one’s risk of contracting the COVID-19 disease. The application of a sanitizer is only effective in situations where soap and water are not available or it is not feasible to wash hands with the same in a place.
The CDC recommends washing your hands every time-
- After using the washroom
- After sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose
- While handling food or before eating
- After touching a potentially contaminated surface area within and outside of your home place
How to Wash Your Hands?
The CDC, Trusted Source recommends the following steps to follow in order to ensure that you wash your hands effectively-
- The CDC recommends using only clean and running water for washing hands with soap. The water can be warm or cold anything.
- Damp your hands first and then turn off the running water and lather your hands with soap
- Rub your both hands together thoroughly with soap foam at least for 20 seconds. Make sure all areas of your hands including the back of your hands, under the nails, and between the fingers are scrubbed well.
- Turn on the water again and rinse your hands thoroughly. Dry out your hands using a clean towel or you can even air dry it.
Is DIY hand sanitizer effective?
Your homemade hand sanitizer is really good but when compared with the commercial hand sanitizers the later one is always considered better over the homemade one. This is because a commercially prepared hand sanitizer undergone the quality control check procedure in order to ensure whether the sanitizer is containing an effective amount of alcohol or not.
On the other hand, this facility or benefit is not available with any homemade hand sanitizer. In the lack of quality control procedure, it is hard to determine whether your homemade hand sanitizer is containing the recommended amount of alcohol or not, needed for it to work effectively.
This is one of the drawbacks of a homemade hand sanitizer. This is the reason why the health care providers recommend using commercially made hand sanitizers to the patients and first-hand responders.
It is hard to determine whether every homemade hand sanitizer pump contains enough concentration of alcohol in equal consistency needed for killing viruses especially the new coronavirus or not.
Also, the homemade hand sanitizer contains a high risk of getting contaminated with an improper or incorrect ingredient, its measurement, and insufficient level of alcohol in order to kill the germs.
So to make your homemade hand sanitizer effective it must be prepared carefully by following the step by step guide and especial tips or suggestions along with taking care of some precautions.
So it’s your time to make your own homemade hand sanitizer with our simple recipe guide discussed above. However, for safe and effective results don’t make any discrimination in ingredients or while selecting their proportion. Use them only when you are lacking with a commercial hand sanitizer or unavailability of soap and water which is the first recommendation by the CDC for preventing the risk of developing the COVID-19 disease.