So this week everyone has been watching and listening to the news very closely regarding the spread of the Coronavirus also known as COVID-19. Although the message here in Ireland has been ‘not to panic’, it is on everyone’s minds and everyone is talking about it. It is all over the news and media and it is the main topic of general conversation at the moment and people are still getting prepared by stocking up on hand sanitizer.
I only have three small pink hand sanitizers at home – the size you put into your handbag – which I had left over from going to a music festival two years ago (does it go out of date?? 🤷♀️). So I figured I might get a few more to have in stock. But by the time I got to the local pharmacies and supermarkets, this week all the hand sanitizers were sold out. I missed the boat! Apparently they won’t be restocked for another two weeks.
But I’m not panicking just yet, after all hand sanitizer is only meant to be used when you can’t access soap and water to wash your hands. As Melissa Maker says at http://www.cleanmyspace.com:
“Whether you use store-bought or make your own, keep in mind its purpose and use: use to clean your hands when soap and water are not accessible. Hand sanitizers are not to be used over and over again a million times during the day.”
So I’m not going to panic. But I figured there would be no harm in having a bit more in the meantime and I thought I’d try my hand at making my own. So I went down the rabbit hole of Google and You Tube to see if I could find out how to do this. As it turns out, there is plenty of videos and articles about it on the internet. When I was in one of the health shops yesterday gathering the ingredients, another lady was enquiring about making her own hand sanitizer too! So I’m not the only one giving this a go.
So I got :
– Two bottles of Aloe Vera Gel in Holland and Barrett
– One bottle of Witch Hazel in Nourish
– One bottle of Tea Tree Oil in Dealz.
I had lavender essential oil already in the cabinet (never used before but glad to be using it finally!) and I had kept an empty hand soap bottle so I figured I could use it for putting it in once made.
I followed a video on YouTube by Brooke at ‘WhatsUpMoms’. She recommended:
1) Put 8oz/250ml of Aloe Vera Gel into a bowl.
2) Add 1 tablespoon of Witch Hazel which is a great natural cleanser and not as drying as alcohol.
3) Add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of Tea Tree Oil. Tea Tree Oil has been known for its antibacterial properties.
4) I didn’t get any Vitamin E oil so I didn’t use it but Brooke suggests adding this for added moisture.
5) Finally add whatever essential oil you want for scent. Brooke added Lavender for scent but also for its antibacterial properties.
6) Mix it altogether.
So when I did this it was very strong tea tree oil smell. I must have put in a bit too much. So I added more drops of Lavender. Mixed it all up. Then I tried to put it into my empty container….but since I didn’t have a funnel, it was impossible as the consistency was too gloopy. So I put it into an empty sauce jar that I had but this wasn’t going to work.
I wasn’t happy so I decided to add water to it until it was a consistency that I could pour. Reading online again after the fact, I probably should have added more witch hazel until it was the consistency I wanted instead of water? I’m not sure. But look at the difference in presentation 😂 The product is probably not as effective, yet it looks much better. Just goes to show how influenced we are with the packaging!
So as first attempts go, I’m glad I tried it. As Chris Martin would sing
‘If you never try, you’ll never know.’
But I don’t think I’ll be setting up a hand sanitizer business just yet! It was really great fun to try something I had never done before but I’m not convinced about how effective my batch is. I’ve put the WikiHow recipe below which seems to me to be a good one. I’ll be using this next time for the next batch if the pharmacies haven’t stocked up and need make one.
Check out the links below to how to make your own hand sanitizer. The WikiHow link is good as it gives the option of alcohol based or witch hazel based. This is the witch hazel based one:
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