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Make Your Own Hand Sanitizer (Over 60% Alcohol) [Recipe] [UPDATED 3/30/20]

Make your own hand sanitizer using ethyl alcohol - Culinary Solvent

Updated 3/30/20

When it comes to your family's health and safety, only the best will do.

Not all disinfectants are created equal, and not all are safe to use across all applications and on all surfaces.  When it comes to killing nasty flu viruses, it's important to keep our home and environment as safe and as nontoxic as possible.  Eliminate harmful toxic chemicals from your home, office, or nursery when disinfecting surfaces, areas, tools, toys....everything, by using only pure food grade ethyl alcohol (ethanol).

Does alcohol (above 60%) kill germs, viruses, and bacteria?

Answer: Yes, according to the CDC's Guidelines for Disinfections and Sterilization in Healthcare Facilities (2008), "ethyl alcohol" exhibits "generally underrated germicidal characteristics" and is considered a strong bactericidal (anti-bacterial), tuberculocidal, fungicidal (anti-fungal), and virucidal (anti-viral) agent.  The same guidelines continue to recommend an optimum alcohol concentration range of between 60% and 90%, mixed with water. 

Culinary Solvent is pure 100% ethyl alcohol and 95% ethyl alcohol, for effective antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal performance while remaining safe for human consumption and leaves the surrounding areas and environment 100% nontoxic.  

2 Step Homemade Hand Sanitizer Recipe, 66% Alcohol

If you are an institution making bulk hand sanitizer for employees or distribution, please follow the WHO guidelines for creating hand sanitizer.

Yield: This recipe creates 12 fluid ounces of personal use homemade hand sanitizer with an ABV of 66% ethyl alcohol.  "ABV" stands for Alcohol By Volume.  

Heads Up! It is important to measure your ingredients when making this recipe, if you dilute the alcohol too much (below 60%) you will be spreading germs not killing them! When in doubt, use more alcohol to ensure the effective killing of germs and viruses. 

Ingredients:

  • 8 fl oz, of 200 Proof (100%) Ethyl Alcohol. (Buy 200 Proof Alcohol Here)
  • 4 fl oz aloe gel (or any other moisturizing gel/lotion/cream/water)

Step 1 - In a glass bowl, combine the food grade alcohol with moisturizing gel/lotion/cream using the rations provided above.  Mix well with a spoon or a whisk by hand until combined thoroughly.  If you shake to mix, allow time for the air bubbles to dissipate out of the foam created when shaking. This will improve the feel greatly.

Step 2 - Store the combined alcohol and moisturizer in a bottle or container with a tight fitting lid.  Plastic or glass is preferable over metal containers.

Congratulations!
Your natural homemade hand sanitizer is finished and ready to kill some germs and viruses. Good work!

Is hand sanitizer made with Culinary Solvent safe to use on the skin?

Answer: Yes! Culinary Solvent contains only pure ethyl alcohol, a food safe alcohol, present in our beverages, food additives and even naturally in our gut...seriously.  Rest assured that hand sanitizer made with Culinary Solvent's pure ethanol is safe for use on you and your loved ones while containing zero toxic additives.  Similar recipes that call for 70%-91% isopropyl alcohol, or worse yet denatured alcohol, should be avoided when better safer alcohol alternatives exists.  

Can I use isopropyl alcohol (99%, 91%, 70%) instead of Culinary Solvent for this hand sanitizer recipe?

Answer:  No, substitution of isopropyl alcohol for 100% ethanol in this recipe is not recommended.

Why can't I substitute isopropyl alcohol for this hand sanitizer recipe?

Answer: While the CDC lists Isopropyl alcohol as an effective alcohol for killing germs and viruses too, the same guidelines stress the importance of maintining alcohol concentration of the final mixed solution.  Because alcohol (both ethanol and isopropyl) only kill germs and viruses above 60% ABV for hand sanitizer, and above 70% ABV for surface disinfectants, care must be take to ensure the final recipe mixture does not fall below these two thresholds.  Isopropyl alcohol is available in different strengths ranging from 99%, 91% and 70% ABV varieties, we feel there is too much at risk if you mix the wrong concentration below the safe threshold, and therefore all of our recommendations for recipes begin with 100% ethanol or 95% ethanol.  Click here to buy 100% alcohol to make homemade hand sanitizer.  

The WHO offers guidance on how to create hand sanitizer using isopropyl alcohol.

Can I substitute denatured alcohol for Culinary Solvent in this recipe?

Answer: No. The term "denatured" directly signifies the addition of toxic additives.  The TTB regulates the list of chemicals approved as denaturants, a list of chemicals approved based on their negative internal/external reactions to the human body. 

To be safe and sure that the chemicals we add to our body (inside and outside) are safe and natural, we only recommend the use of nondenatured ethanol for the creation of hand sanitizer and surface disinfectants. 

Learn more about denatured vs nondenatured ethanol:  What is the difference between denatured and non-denatured ethanol?

Can I add lotions, scents, essential oils, or other ingredients to my hand sanitizer recipe?

Answer:  Yes! Adding other ingredients like moisturizing lotions, essential oils, vitamins, or aromatherapy scents is a great way to further customize your hand sanitizer recipe just for you and your family's specific needs.  When adding other ingredients, subtract the volume added from the gel/cream component, never reduce the alcohol contained in the final mix.  Always maintain an ABV at or above 60% to ensure your hand sanitizer remains effective.

Tip: Re-purpose old empty hand sanitizer bottles, shampoo bottles, hand soap dispensers, or even used food condiment bottles, which all offer easy storage with built in dispensing.  Never reuse containers that once contained bleach or ammonia.

Where do I buy alcohol to make my own hand sanitizer?

Answer: Use these links to browse alcohol for sale by the ABV or by the container size. Quarts  |  Gallons  |  Organic  |  100% Alcohol (200 Proof)  |  95% Alcohol (190 Proof)  |  All Items

Does Culinary Solvent offer and organic ethanol for organic hand sanitizer recipes?

Answer: Buy organic food grade ethanol here for making your own organic hand sanitizer.  Culinary Solvent's Organic food grade alcohol is available in quarts, gallons, 5 gallon jugs, bulk quantities, and 55 gallon drums.  Culinary Solvent organic ethanol is available in 190 proof and 200 proof strengths.

Does this hand sanitizer recipe work as a surface disinfectant?

Answer:  No. Surface disinfectants require an ABV of 70% or greater according to the recommendations provided by the CDC.

Can I buy non-organic ethyl alcohol for the same germ and virus killing properties?

Answer: Yes, nonorganic alcohol performs equally to organic alcohol when it comes to disinfecting surfaces and killing germs and viruses as long as the concentration of alcohol remains above the stated minimum thresholds for sanitizer or surface disinfection. 

Browse the selection of non-organic 100% alcohol and 95% alcohol

Where do I buy organic aloe vera gel for my hand sanitizer recipe (UPDATED 3/19/20)?

Answer: Supplies of pure aloe vera gel have been run dry on demand with recent news events.  At this time we are not aware of any suppliers who have pure organic aloe vera gel for sale. 

I used aloe vera gel to make my hand sanitizer and a weird clump formed, what is it (UPDATED 3/19/20)?

Answer: We have heard reports of this happening with folks who have sourced aloe vera "gel" online and upon mixing with ethanol, the results are a clumpy white glob that precipitates out.  We are working to identify just exactly what this mystery substance is. 

Things we know:

1.) Culinary Solvent is pure ethanol, we guarantee it and stand by it and there are actually ways to test for the purity of ethanol, which we do.
2.) Aloe Vera Gel is not the natural, pure form of aloe.  "Gel" is the result of a process that aloe juice is put through. What that process is, we have no idea because we are distillers. 
We have obtained some of the aloe from vendors that have been reported to us as causing the clumps and are working to identify what they are and what added ingredient(s) is causing them.  you can contact us with questions.

Is aloe vera gel a required ingredient for hand sanitizer recipes?

Answer: No, aloe vera gel is not a required ingredient for hand sanitizer recipes.  View this recipe from the homemade  Aloe vera gel is useful in moisturizing the skin and therefore is commonly included in the recipe for hand sanitizer. Alternatively, you can substitute aloe vera gel for your favorite lotion or cream.  Substituting aloe vera gel for your own lotion is an effective way to customize your hand sanitizer for maximum comfort and benefit. When substituting lotion for aloe vera gel, do not adjust the amount of alcohol used to ensure the antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antiviral properties of your hand sanitizer are maintained.

Does homemade hand sanitizer expire?

Answer: If kept sealed tightly, the alcohol contained within your hand sanitizer should not evaporate, and the overall product should keep for up to 6 months.  If you've come across an old bottle of hand sanitizer who's origin date is unclear, we recommend discarding the contents (and refilling the bottle with fresh sanitizer) to be confident the germs and viruses are not spreading.   

Can homemade hand sanitizer be used to disinfect surfaces?

Answer: No, recipes for homemade hand sanitizer that dilute the final ABV to below 70% are not recommended for use as surface disinfectants.  Also, users may find the aloe or other moisturizer additives to the sanitizer leave an undesirable residue on the surface that is being disinfected. 

CDC guidelines currently recommend alcohol solutions (mixed with water) of at least 70% for effective surface disinfection against germs, viruses, bacteria, and fungus. 

Checkout our recipe on how to make your own homemade surface disinfectant solution (80% ABV).

 

Read More Here:

 

 

 

 

 

3 comments

  • Re: clumping of the aloe vera gel when combining with the alcohol, I experienced the same thing when it tried a dump and mix method. The second attempt I started with the full amount of aloe vera gel in a class bowl and then slowly mixed in about 2 oz. of alcohol to incorporate then slowly added the remaining alcohol mixing the entire time at about each 2 oz. addition to make sure it was fully incorporated before adding more alcohol. No clumping occurred using the method.

    Stay well,
    Dean

    Dean Gustafson
  • I found all of your information useful. I am thinking about making my own sanitizer…

    Tamar
  • Can I but the Culinary Solvents 100 (ABV)& the Ethyl Alcohol 95 (ABV) with 8 oz of 200 proof of Ethyl Alcolho, also 4 oz Organic Aloe Vera Gel. Thank You Pat Haddock

    Pat Haddock

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