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Hand Sanitizer Safety Check

By: Anapol Weiss

Is your hand sanitizer safe? In the post-COVID-19 world, the use of and demand for hand sanitizer has skyrocketed. This demand has led to some loosening of regulation around hand sanitizer that the common consumer should be aware of in order to make informed and healthy decisions.

  • The FDA relaxed regulations over acceptable ingredients to be used in hand sanitizer to help combat the global shortage. Organizations that compound hand sanitizer have more flexibility over the sources of alcohol usable to make hand sanitizers.
  • Some fuel ethanol manufactures have shown that some of their alcohol products contain gasoline and benzene, which are known human carcinogens.*
  • Toxic and/or ineffective hand sanitizers have been found on the market, according to several CDC reports (including the toxin methanol).
  • Potential injuries or illness sustained over unsafe sanitization products have no clear liability, which could leave some consumers with little to no recourse.

The influx of hand sanitizers on the market with ingredients once not allowed, or even with ingredients unallowed but utilized anyway, means consumers must be careful about where their products are purchased. Make sure to check the ingredients list in your hand sanitizer before purchasing.

More information can be found in Paola Pearson’s article for The Legal Intelligencer, “Is Your Hand Sanitizer Safe? Dangerous Products in the COVID-19 Era.” Also read more in our recent news post here.

*The FDA determined that using such products in small quantities was an acceptable risk to take, given the global health crisis from the novel coronavirus pandemic.