Sanitizer Works, But Is Hand Washing Better?

If you haven’t gotten the memo to wash your hands regularly, especially now with COVID-19 floating around, it’s time to break out the soap and get scrubbing. But something that’s not as clear is whether you should stock up on hand sanitizer, or even make your own if the Amazon prices are giving you heartburn.

So, what do the experts recommend? Wash your hands whenever possible, and if you can’t get to a sink, sanitizer is good, too (both the kind from the store and the kind you can make). Here’s the breakdown of why soap comes first, and why sanitizer has its pros and cons.

What is sanitizer, and how does it work?

Hand sanitizer is essentially isopropyl alcohol, plus gel, plus fun-smelling essential oils if you’re so inclined. At first, hospitals and other healthcare centers used the solution as a quick fix for doctors who didn’t necessarily have a second to go to the restroom to disinfect between patients.

Excerpted from Popular Science

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