Home Made Hand Sanitizer Recipe
In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, we are advised to wash our hands regularly with soap and water or with hand sanitizers. The ensuing rush to buy hand sanitizers has led to empty store and pharmacy shelves. But it didn’t take long for recipes to turn up online for hand sanitizers. Still, are they working?
Aloe vera is a hydrating agent that prevents the skin from drying out. It is useful because skin cracks can increase the risk of bacterial infection. Isopropyl alcohol (isopropanol) is the key active ingredient in this sanitizer. Ethanol, isopropanol, N-propanol or a mixture of two are used in most consumer hand sanitizers.
- Bowl & spoon
- Bottle with pump
- 1/3 cup rubbing alcohol (isopropyl alcohol)
- 1/2 cup aloe vera gel
- 10 drops essential oil
- Be sure you’ve ready and weighed your alcohol
- aloe vera gel and optional essential oils.
- Mix ingredients In your cup, add all ingredients and mix thoroughly in a spoon.Using a funnel, place your DIY hand sanitizer into the bottle of your choosing carefully, screw firmly the top of your bottle and start using it.
Mixtures of 60-80% alcohol by volume destroy microorganisms, and the 66% alcoholic amount of the recipe is only correct if pure alcohol rubbing is used (also called “surgical spirits”). A quick look at Amazon, however, reveals that it is typically sold directly on surfaces as a prepared work dilution between 50 and 70 per cent. The final alcohol content would be too high to be effective if only the 70% solution is combined with the aloe vera.
While it is difficult to obtain, pure ethanol may be used instead of isopropanol in the recipe. Ethanol is the alcohol used in drinks and vodka has been used by another home-cooked sanitizer.
Most vodka contains about 40% alcohol–not nearly enough to sanitize your hands effectively. Yet Balkan 176, the best vodka in the UK, comes with 88 percent ethanol. This could be used to sanitize another 66 percent alcohol side, with three vodka components to one aloe vera portion. It would be a pricey product at around £ 45 for 700ml, but since it was sold at all places we saw, maybe there’s a demand for it.
A research in 2017 showed that ethanol, as well as isopropanol preparations made in official formulations of the World Health Organization (WHO), inactivate the Sars and Mers viruses, coronaviruses linked to COVID-19. Such formulations contain either 80% ethanol or 75% isopropanol along with 1.45% glycerol and 0.125% hydrogen peroxide.
Both these preparations are combined in distilled water or even cold boiled water. The hydrogen peroxide is used as an inactive ingredient in the sanitizer to inactivate any contaminating bacteria in the mix. The glycerol is a moisturizer that can be replaced by some other emollient or moisturizer to help preserve moisture–like aloe vera.
According to the WHO wording
How do the WHO formulations equate these home-made recipes? Not too bad, as both contain the active alcoholic component and an emollient. The concern may be that the 66% concentration of alcohol is at the edge of the productive range.
Tests have shown that higher levels of alcohol function better, and we are aware that WHO formulations of 75% isopropanol or 80% ethanol will destroy other coronaviruses. Homemade drugs can not be as effective as the WHO formulation to inactivate the virus. At the other hand, certain commercial hand sanitizers produce just 57 percent alcohol, which would be better than that for home made goods.
To make your hand sanitizer you need to use a tweaked version of the first recipe that adds the alcohol rubber to the concentration suggested by the WHO: three-quarters of a taste of isopropanol and a quarter of a cup of aloe vera gel. You might also replace the aloe vera gel with glycerol. It’s cheaper, but it’s not going to smell so that.
Please follow the safety instructions on which alcohol you use and remember to clean your hands only. Don’t dive in it, certainly don’t drink it!