COVID-19 has caused a tremendous increase in people’s awareness of hand hygiene. With that awareness comes increase hand-washing and use of hand sanitizer. Unfortunately, not all hand sanitizers are created equal.
The FDA recommendation is that hand sanitizer contains alcohol (ethanol) or USP grade isopropyl alcohol. Other necessary ingredients are sterile water, glycerin, and hydrogen peroxide.
Additionally, the CDC says that the alcohol should make up at least 60% of the total mixture.
The FDA is also warning against hand sanitizers that use methanol. In their statement they say that “methanol is not an acceptable ingredient for hand sanitizers and must not be used due to its toxic effects. FDA’s investigation of methanol in certain hand sanitizers is ongoing. The agency will provide additional information as it becomes available.” Methanol, also known as wood alcohol, is a toxic substance that can cause harm when absorbed through the skin and can be fatal if ingested.
If you are responsible for purchasing hand sanitizer for your organization, be sure to check that you are purchasing a quality, approved product. The most recent list of products NOT recommended by the FDA can be found at the link below;