You can't turn on your TV or computer without being inundated with information about the Coronavirus. We all want to do whatever we can to protect ourselves, don't we? But, are we really?
Many stores are sold out of hand sanitizers, leading to a glut of homemade hand sanitizer recipes/videos all over the internet.
I started to look at some of the DIY hand sanitizer recipes circulating and quickly realized, these recipes aren't going to work. Most are not formulated properly and ineffective.
Most of the DIY hand sanitizer recipes you see on the internet don't even contain the right amount of alcohol. The CDC recommends you use hand sanitizers that contain 60-95% alcohol by volume.
If you dilute a 70%-99% isopropyl alcohol (good luck finding any over 70%) with water, witch hazel, aloe vera and/or essential oils, you aren't even coming close to the recommended effective level.
Some DIYers are also suggesting you add essential oils to the formulas at dangerous levels. Now, you all know I love essential oils, BUT, essential oils don't mix with water and you must know which oils to use and proper amounts.
Essential oils must be properly dispersed. The best way to disperse essential oils is through a cool air diffuser and inhalation or topically in the right carrier oils.
Some Youtube videos suggest using drinking-type alcohol to disinfect. Interestingly, 100-proof alcohol is only 50% alcohol by volume. 190 proof Everclear is 95% alcohol. You can pour Everclear over your hands in a pinch, but you'll want to have plenty of moisturizers available as this can beat your skin up quickly.
Don't even think about it if you have eczema or any other skin condition on your hands. Using high strength alcohol, or overuse of hand sanitizers can cause dry, cracked skin, opening yourself up to more germs, literally.
Hand Sanitizers are regulated by the FDA because they are considered Over The Counter (OTC) drugs. You must be very careful about the claims you make with a product that claims to kill germs.
Purell just received a strong warning letter from the FDA for breaking the rules by claiming on their product page, "Kills more than 99.99% of the most common germs that may cause illness in a healthcare setting, including MRSA & VRE." There are even more unsubstantiated claims that changed their OTC product into an unapproved new drug. Purell should know better.
I'm choosing to stick with soap and water and properly diffused essential oils to help kill germs and support my Immune System. Nothing is a guarantee, but I believe these precautions (here are a few other good tips) along with keeping calm and living life normally, all contribute to a balanced, healthy life in today's uncertain world.
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