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I have spent the last 25 years working as a makeup artist. And because of this, hand sanitizer has long been a part of my daily regime. It’s been with me traveling, in my car, and of course on my person at all times at work.
But for most of us, when the world changed at the beginning of this year, hand-sanitizer became a newly accepted buzzword in our language. And now 6 months later, of course, the market for hand sanitizers has been flooded with new and (some) not so new products. It only seemed fair that I give a handful (pardon the pun!) of them a look over.
Recent amendments to CDC Guidelines regarding hand hygiene have put a lot more focus on it for the everyday people that may not have had this product in their life pre-Covid. And we should all be more than well aware of the FDA’s recent update regarding the banning of over 100 different hand sanitizer products.
Most of which seem to come down to them being made from Methanol Alcohol which has shown itself to be poisonous in children. Needless to say, any hand sanitizer should be used under strict adult supervision when in the proximity of children, and on children’s hands.
Of course, nothing beats the good old tried and true method of washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water. But I can attest to being stuck in situations where soap and running water just isn’t an option.
Here are 20 Hand Sanitizers that meet the current recommendations of 60% or more alcohol levels in their contents. I hope this may give you some insight and help make a choice that’s right for you when it comes to choosing the best product to keep your hands clean and sanitized.
I have to start with Jao Refresher. This product has been in my life for over 20 years now and it still has to sit at the top of my list. And I have to say that this product is, without doubt, an unsung hero for many a professional makeup artist.
Jao has a gel formulation that evaporates on the hands fairly quickly. It is made with essential oils such as lavender, tea tree, geranium, eucalyptus. Did I mention that also smells delightful? Ethyl Alcohol content 65%.
Grown Alchemist Hydra-Gel Hand Sanitizer
I’m a long time fan of this gorgeous Australian skincare brand. And when I recently discovered that they had released this product, I literally jumped for sanitized joy! Needless to say, I am not disappointed!
The Grown Alchemist Hydra-Gel contains Hyaluronan to increase hydration. And coconut oil, cold-pressed sweet orange oil, sweet almond oil and pot marigold all to help calm, soothe and treat your hands. On application, it smells delicious.
As the name states it is a gel consistency and takes a second to absorb and evaporate. There is definitely that moment when it seems like it won’t dry, but it will. Once dry, I have to say my hands feel almost like they are wearing invisible gloves. They really do feel nourished and protected! Grown Alchemist recommends pairing this with one of their hand creams. Sounds like a grand plan to me! 70% Ethanol Alcohol content.
Megababe Hand Sanitizer
The packaging of the Megababe beauty comes with a convenient pump applicator. Deeming it perfect for any kitchen, bathroom or office countertop. It goes on very easily, has a slightly creamy consistency and dries very quickly. Feels good on the skin. Smells wonderful! Bergamot, Orange peel, mandarin, cedarwood, lavender, geranium and sweet almond oil. Why can’t I stop smelling my hands?! 62% Ethyl Alcohol content.
Hands Down – The Best Hand Refresher
Made by a makeup artist, but is certainly not only for makeup artists. This is a brand new product on the market this year. Designed and devised long before the word Covid was even in our vocabulary. Hands Down Hand Refresher is made from Aloe Vera Gel and Witch Hazel so it’s not to tough on your skin.
Cleanly and simply packaged, it is currently available in 2 fragrances: Lemongrass and Lavender. I’m not usually a Lavender loving type, but I must say, the Lavender is beautiful. It comes in a spray bottle format so it’s easy to use, lightweight and unlike some of the thicker gels, it dries on your skin very quickly. Leaving your hands clean and refreshed and smelling delightful. 70% Isopropyl Alcohol content.
Sun Bum Baby Bum Hand Sanitizer
This hand sanitizer smells so good! That may be due to the second ingredient listed after water is indeed fragrance. And we all know that can mean almost anything! This may be of concern to those that like to be in the know about what exactly they are putting on their hands.
It contains Aloe Barbensis Leaf Juice, Gardenia, Banana, White Ginger and Passionflower extracts. Feels great and literally leaves my hands smelling like a baby! 62% Ethyl Alcohol content.
Aēsop Resurrection Rinse-Free Hand Wash
Aēsop may well have presented us with the winner when it comes to fragrance and ingredients. Their Rinse-Free Hand Wash is made with Mandarin Rind, Rosemary Leaf and Cedar Atlas. This product really is a cut above the standard everyday hand sanitizers we are all accustomed to now. 62% alcohol content.
Everyone for Everybody Hand Sanitizer
Another staple in my makeup kit over the years. I love the delightful Everyone Coconut and Lemon Hand Sanitizer fragrance. Also available in: Lavender and Aloe, Peppermint and Citrus and coming soon is Ruby Grapefruit. This is very easy to use and smells great. It’s very summery and crisp. Dries very quickly on the skin. 62% Ethanol Alcohol content.
The Honest Co. Hand Sanitizer Spray
I sampled the Coastal Surf fragrance of this lovely product. As is the mantra of the company, this sanitizer comes without synthetic fragrances, parabens, triclosan or benzalkonium chloride. It’s also available in Lavender Field and Grapefruit Grove. I can’t wait to try these two fragrances as well! Honestly, this smells gorgeous to me and leaves my hands feeling clean and happy. 62% ethyl alcohol content.
Touchland Power Mist Moisturising Hand Sanitizer
I sampled the Touchland Forest Berry fragrance and I must say it smells really yummy! It contains aloe vera leaf juice, lime seed oil, lemon peel oil. Available in a vast array of fragrances: Citrus Mint, Aloe Vera, Vanilla Cinnamon, Watermelon and Lavender. Convenient (and funky!) pocket-size flat bottle which is perfect to carry in your pocket or handbag. Dries instantaneously. Ethyl alcohol content of 67%.
Olivia Care Natural Hand Sanitizer
This hand sanitizer is offered in both Lavender and Cleansing Lemon. I tested the Olivia Care Cleansing Lemon fragrance. It’s available in a spray formula. Dries on the skin very quickly. Contains glycerin to help act as an emollient on the skin. Smells light and fresh and feels good on the skin. 62% Ethyl Alcohol content.
Sweet Earth CBD Hand Sanitizer
With the realisation of the healing qualities of CBD oil and it’s emerging presence in the beauty industry, it could only be so long before we see hand sanitizers containing CBD. This Sweet Earth product goes on very smoothly and feels like a hand lotion as much a hand sanitizer. Made with cannabidiol, aloe vera juice and lavender flower water. It takes a minute to dry but leaves the hands feeling very smooth. 70% alcohol content.
Poo-Pourri Antibacterial Hand Sanitizer
We may know Poo Pourri more from their Before You Go Toilet Spray. But their newly re-packaged Hand Sanitizer is not worth overlooking either. This is in a spray format. Available in Coconut & Lemon fragrance and Unscented at this point in time. Smells good and goes on with ease. Dries instantaneously and feels good – made with coconut and lavender essential oils. 65% Ethyl Alcohol content.
R & Co Palm Reader Antiseptic Hand Sanitizer
I’m a sucker for any R & Co Products. Their packaging is always so pretty and the hair products I have used have always been of high quality. So when I discovered their Hand Sanitizer, I was more than a tad excited. Wittily called Palm Reader; love the name!
You can certainly feel the alcohol on your skin at first use. Consisting of ingredients such as Aloe Vera Juice, I was honestly expecting this to have a prettier fragrance, but there is very little fragrance whatsoever. This may suit the customer that is drawn to fragrance-free products in their life. Gel textured formulation, it does take a minute to dry on application. 69% Ethyl Alcohol content.
Milani Rose Hand Sanitizer
The Milani Rose Hand Sanitizer packaging gives the appearance of a spray and I was expecting a watery consistency but it is in fact a gel. Applies smoothly and conatins glycerin to help prevent hands from drying out. Feels good and dries fairly quickly, leaving a very mild rose fragrance. 68% Ethanol Alcohol.
Pipette Hand Sanitizer
A slightly milky formulation is the consistency of Pipette Hand Sanitizer. This almost goes on like a hand lotion, dare I say. Feels great to use. Contains sugar-derived squalane, glycerin to keep skin smooth. 65% alcohol content.
La Roche Posay Alcohol Antiseptic Hand Sanitizer
This hand sanitizer from La Roche Posay contains one of the highest potency of alcohol amongst the products I tested. This has very little to no fragrance aside from the immediate smell of alcohol. Which is not as off-putting as some of the other products in the group. A very slight tingling sensation but nothing to prevent me from getting this in the future. Hands feel smooth afterwards, which is probably due to the inclusion of glycerin in the product. 71% Alcohol.
Purell Advanced Hand Sanitizer Soothing Gel
The go-to hand sanitizer of the pandemic, it seems is Purell Advanced Hand Sanitizer. And certainly a major player in this new-found lucrative market. I couldn’t neglect to mention it here! I sampled the Soothing Gel with aloe vera and vitamin E to look after your hands. 70% Ethyl Alcohol content.
Physician’s Formula Rosé Take the Germs Away Hand Sanitizer
This product from Physician’s Formula certainly packs a punch as far as the alcohol content is concerned. That may account for that slightly off-putting alcohol smell that does hit you once sprayed onto the hands.
It’s not as over-powering as it is in some other hand sanitizers, but nevertheless, that scent is there. However, it is lovely to smell the roses! It contains tea tree oil and aloe vera to help soothe the hands. Very quick evaporating. 80% ethyl alcohol formulation. Yowzers!
Hand in Hand Hand Sanitizer
The Unscented Hand in Hand Sanitizer has that very pungent tequila-like smell on application. But it dries very quickly. It comes in Sea Salt, Lavender, Citrus Grove and Cactus Blossom fragrances. As well as the Unscented version, which is the product I tested. I would love to try all of those different options as they sound great.
Hand in Hand stand by their mission statement “Buy a Bar, Give a Bar” that sees one bar of soap donated for every product of theirs sold. In particular, they have donated over 1.6 million bars of soap to underprivileged children in Haiti. As well as working on improvements to water wells that supply water to thousands of people within the country. Worth buying just to support that cause, I say. 62% Alcohol content.
Raw Sugar Hand Sanitizer
The Raw Sugar Hand Sanitizer is in gel form. I was totally drawn to the Watermelon and Aloe Vera Fragrance. It’s also available in Peppermint/Sea Salt and Coconut/Lemon Verbena. Honestly, I wish I had all the different types to try. I was so excited to sample the Watermelon and Aloe and it just kind of hit me in the face on application.
Once it had evaporated, I was left with hands that didn’t smell great. Like a very potent and nasty alcohol smell. As mentioned, I would really love to try the other fragrances. I’m sure they are more my cup of tea. I just couldn’t resist the watermelon and was very curious…..we all know what they say about curiosity. Ethyl Alcohol content of 62%.
I hope this list helps guide you with your future choices when it comes to purchasing hand sanitizers. Do you have already favorite hand sanitizer? Have you discovered a new one this year? Please comment below. There are so many on the market, and there is always room to learn more! Just remember to keep your hands clean!
Featured image by Andrew “Donovan” Valdivia via Unsplash