Ingredients and key facts of hand sanitizers

May 28 , 2021

Ingredients and key facts of hand sanitizers

It is said good hand hygiene is paramount to good health. After the good ol’ fashioned way of using soap and water to clean our hands, hand sanitizers are the next best alternative. Its ease of use and portability have made them a preferred choice for one and all, especially for those who are always on the go. While we all have used them at some point of time, many don’t know what ingredients they contain, their types, and how to use sanitizers effectively. Following are a few key facts about sanitizers that are helpful to know.

Ingredients of sanitizers:

Sanitizers typically comprise of alcohol (60% to 90% content) or a disinfectant like benzalkonium chloride, water as a part of the hydrogel (<40%), and emollients, polyacrylate, base, fragrances, colours, etc. The alcohol or the disinfectant is the active ingredient that fights against different types of bacteria, fungi and viruses. Emollients are substances like glycerine that are added to soothe the skin and keep it soft.

Types of sanitizers:

Sanitizers can be broadly categorized into the following types:

1. Alcohol-free hand sanitizers and alcohol-based sanitizers Alcohol content in the sanitizers determines its germ killing efficacy. At least 60% alcohol ( isopropyl alcohol or ethyl alcohol) content is required for a sanitizer to be effective against most viruses. Contrary to the popular opinion, alcohol-free sanitizers are just as effective since they contain disinfectants. Benzalkonium chloride or antimicrobial agents like triclosan are usually the active ingredient in these sanitizers.

2. Type of application Based on the form of application, sanitizers are available as liquids, sprays, gels, foams and wipes. You can find them in different sized bottles for your use.

3. Moisturizing sanitizers and non-moisturizing sanitizers Moisturizing hand sanitizers contain glycerine and other agents to leave a moisturizing effect. In contrast to alcohol-based sanitizers that leave your skin dry, these sanitizers keep your hands soft and supple, even after repeated use.

Baby sanitizers like those by Tiffy and Toffee are alcohol free and have a moisturizer-rich formula that leave your skin soft for a long time. Its FDA approved formula is effective against 99.9% germs and is safe for all ages. Just dab a few drops on your palms, rub it evenly , air dry and carry on with your work. 

What is the right way to use hand sanitizers? Just follow this 3 step process

1. Apply some sanitizer on your palms

2. Rub thoroughly on your fingers and hand surfaces for about 30 seconds

3. Let it completely air dry before you touch any surface/object.