Commercial hand sanitizers contain the chemical Tricolsan which has been linked to a number of environmental health hazards. It has been found to increase breast cancer cells in vitro, negatively affect the thyroid, decrease testosterone and alter endocrine function to name a few. Not only that but due to it's over use in antibacterial products most bacteria is resistant to it. It is also completely ineffective against viruses, so these little tubes of liquid hand sanitizers are doing little more than giving us a false sense of security. To be effective antibacterial products must come in direct contact with the bacteria, it can not penetrate debris on the hands. Hand sanitizers natural or commercial will not be as effective as soap and water (plain soap not antibacterial). Surprisingly it is the friction of hand washing that strips away the bacteria more than the soap. The soap cleanses the debris while the friction strips aways the bacteria.
The following video is a recipe for a simple hand sanitizing spray that is easy to transport. This spray can be used as an alternative to triclosan products on hands that are free of debris when hand washing options are not available.
The alcohol assists in denaturing bacteria. It does not deactivate viruses, and only works on certain bacteria it does however double as a preservative in this situation. Lavender essential oil is a gentle antimicrobial, citrus oils have anti viral properties, and clove has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties making it useful on a range of microbes.
It is important to always shake your bottle before each use to disperse the oils as they will separate between each use. The alcohol will help to keep them dispersed temporarily in this product.
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