Coronavirus in Slovenia has made sure all the stores and pharmacies are running low on hand sanitizers and disinfection products. With this in mind, we wanted to help you out and show you how you can make your own hand sanitizer.
Some commercial hand sanitizer contains ingredients as scary as the germs they protect you from, so why not make your own hand sanitizer from ingredients you select? This is an excellent project for kids as well as adults since the project can be expanded to include a discussion about hygiene and disinfection. You’ll save money, protect yourself from germs, and can customize the scent of the hand sanitizer so it doesn’t smell medicinal.
It is good to use water and soap for hand hygiene, but in cases where this is not available in Slovenia, choose a hand sanitizer. It can be prepared at home or in a hotel room in minutes.
You will need the following products: 99% isopropyl alcohol, pure aloe vera gel, an essential oil such as lavender, clove, cinnamon or peppermint, a bowl to mix all the ingredients in, a spoon, a funnel, and a bottle or plastic container to store the disinfectant.
The active ingredient in this hand sanitizer recipe is the alcohol, which needs to comprise at least 60% of the product in order to be an effective disinfectant. The recipe calls for 99% isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) or ethanol (grain alcohol, most commonly available at 90%-95%). Please don’t use any other types of alcohol (e.g., methanol, butanol), as they are toxic. Also, if you use a product that contains a lower percentage of alcohol (e.g., 70% alcohol) then you need to increase the amount of alcohol in the recipe or it won’t be as effective.
In addition to adding fragrance to your hand sanitizer, the essential oil you choose may also help protect you against germs. For example, thyme and clove oil have antimicrobial properties. If you are using antimicrobial oils, only use a drop or two, since these oils tend to be very powerful and might irritate your skin. Other oils, such as lavender or chamomile, may help soothe your skin.
INGREDIENTS TO MAKE YOUR OWN HAND SANITIZER:
- 85 ml of 99% isopropyl alcohol
- 43 ml of pure aloe vera gel
- 8 to 10 drops of essential oil
Mix the alcohol and aloe vera gel with a spoon in a bowl. The resulting mixture should be completely smooth. To make the mixture denser, add some more gel, otherwise, add alcohol.
Then, while stirring, the mixture is slowly added to the drop of essential oil – drop by drop. After we have added 8 drops, we check if the scent suits us, if we prefer stronger ones, add up to 2 drops more. We are free to choose scents: lavender, cement, peppermint, lemon, grapefruit…
Pour the mixture through the hopper into the container where the disinfectant is to be stored and seal it tightly.