11 tips to select and use hand sanitizer
To prevent the spread of germs, including COVID-19, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends washing hands with soap and water whenever possible because it reduces the amount of many types of germs and chemicals on hands.
If soap and water are not readily available, using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can help you avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others.
Here are some tips to help you select and use hand sanitizer:
1. Choose hand sanitizers that contain at least 60% alcohol (often listed on the label as ethanol, ethyl alcohol, isopropanol, or 2-propanol).
2. Do not choose hand sanitizers labeled as “alcohol-free.”
3. Avoid alcohol-based hand sanitizers that are not approved by Food and Drug Administration.
Is your hand sanitizer on FDA’s list of products you should not use? Check the list here.
4. Choose alcohol-based hand sanitizers packaged in a container that resembles a food or beverage container.
5. Swallowing alcohol-based hand sanitizers can cause alcohol poisoning. Keep them out of reach of young children and supervise their use.
6. Follow label directions for use.
7. Properly apply alcohol-based sanitizer by rubbing the gel over all surfaces of your hands and fingers until your hands are dry.
8. Keep alcohol-based hand sanitizer out of your eyes.
9. Do not rinse or wipe off the alcohol-based hand sanitizer before it’s dry; it may not work well against germs.
10. Do not use alcohol-based hand sanitizer to clean surfaces. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer is not designed to clear or disinfect surfaces.
11. Do not store alcohol-based hand sanitizer above 105°F (for example, it should not be stored in a car during the summer months).