By Gabriela Baron
Fear of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 has led people to hoard the germ-killing gel, leaving store and shelves empty and online retailers charging sky-high prices. So some people have resorted to making their own hand sanitizer. But experts are warning against it.
Recipes for DIY (do it yourself) hand sanitizer are all over the Internet. Even the World Health Organization (WHO) released an official guide to make one — however, it is intended for populations that do not have clean water of other medical-grade products available.
If made correctly, DIY solution could be helpful and even effective. But if made incorrectly, according to a public health professor at the University of California, it can be harmful.
“I worry about people making their own sanitizer as it will be difficult to make sure that the concentrations are correct,” Daniel Parker told CNN.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for hand sanitizer to be effective, it must have at least 60 percent alcohol content.
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Sally Bloomfield said that most store products often have emollients to counter the harshness of the alcohol on the skin, DIY products may not and could hurt your hands.
“It’s very unwise, dangerous even,” she underscored in an interview with The Guardian.
Store-bought sanitizer will often have emollients to counter the harshness of the alcohol on the skin; DIY products may not, and could hurt your hands.
Just wash your hands with warm or cold water and soap, it is more effective anyway, said the CDC.
“Hand sanitizer will do. But keep in mind that it doesn’t kill all germs.”