Before the outbreak of COVID-19, very few people cared about hand sanitizers. But now things have changed as they have become one of the essential accessories when you are out on the road, especially liquid, alcohol-based ones.
They are in no way a replacement for thorough hand-washing, but when you do not have access to water or when the practice is not feasible, it acts as an almost-perfect alternative.
COMPONENTS OF HAND SANITIZER
Even in chemical hand sanitizers, there are several categories which differ in the ingredients or their concentration. Major component in any sanitizer is either isopropyl alcohol or ethanol Ethanol, ranging between 60 and 95 per cent. Alcohol-free ones have other disinfectants, such as BAC or triclosan. Some of them also have glycerine to moisturize the skin.
DO THEY WORK?
The main goal of a hand sanitizer is to remove germs from your hands, but they don’t clean it completely. Their effectiveness depends on several factors, such as its proper application, ingredients, duration, frequency, etc. If a person rubs them on their hands for at least 20-30 seconds and follows it up by air-drying, it can significantly reduce the existing population of microorganisms.
- They are much more accessible than hand sinks
- They reduce bacteria count on your hands
- Safer option than not washing your hands
- Some of the chemical hand sanitizers moisturize your skin (due to glycerine content)
- As per various studies, Triclosan can lead to hormone disruption and to a weaker immune system
- Alcohol consumption can lead to poisoning in some cases
- Some of them might trigger allergies in some people
- Some of the low quality sanitizers do not have antimicrobial qualities
WHAT IS OUR VERDICT?
Even if you get the best chemical hand sanitizer for yourself, it will have ingredients that might be harmful to your body. It is time for you shift to natural ones, which are not only safe, but they are known to have skin improving properties too.