Mar 15, 2020

30% glycerol seems very high. The WHO publishes recipes for hand sanitizers with only 1.45% glycerol by volume:

Mar 14, 2020

Slightly offtopic, but should you need sanitizer and your local stores are out of stock — perhaps due to people like the subjects of this article — you can make your own based on this guide from the WHO:

Mar 14, 2020

FYI, the World Health Organization has published a guide to the local production of hand sanitizer. [0]. There also numerous other recipes available online. While there are retail shortages of hand sanitizer, bulk quantities of ethanol and isopropyl alcohol are readily available directly from manufacturers and third-party sites like ebay.


Mar 11, 2020

Make your own hand sanitiser (WHO recipe):

Buy 95% ethanol (from hardware/paint department, or maybe Everclear booze if in US) or isopropyl alcohol (hardware/paint department).

Buy Glycerin (Chemist, or I found it cheap at Indian goods store, probably other places).

IMHO the Hydrogen peroxide can be safely skipped if you can’t easily find it.

Maybe also get some hand cream (frequent use of hand sanitiser will screw your skin).

Mar 06, 2020

The panic buying has also trickled over to isopropanol/IPA. I needed to buy some anyway and I picked up a litre earlier this week for about £6. At the time Amazon had a lot for sale, now they're all out.

Given that consumer hand gel is basically just IPA diluted down to 60% (see edit), I also bought a few tubes of aloe vera to mix it with... I suspect a lot of other people had the same idea.

It looks like there's a lot still available on eBay, so if you really want to by sanitiser, you might as well make your own. Just remember to dilute it a little, 99% won't do too much damage, but it's not particularly kind to your hands if you rub it in on purpose. It's also extremely flammable!


The WHO has published guidelines on making your own gel:

Interestingly Wikipedia seems to suggest that you should use at least 90% alcohol to kill flu. And that lower concentration formulations are potentially ineffective because they evaporate before killing stuff off. Hospitals use 70-95%. Obviously the higher you go, the more flammable things get.

This article tested a number of gels vs rinses:

> Based on our efficacy data, we do not consider any of the tested alcohol-based hand gels to be suitable for hand antisepsis in the health-care setting because their antimicrobial efficacy may be insufficient to prevent the spread of pathogens. Future ethanol-based hand gels used in hospitals should contain at least 80% (v/v) ethanol as the active ingredient and should be as effective as the EN 1500 reference alcohol within 30 s.

Mar 05, 2020

They can still make it with ethanol.