We are clean, very clean, people these days. It’s a fantastic thing for the most part- feeling fresh, smelling good, and getting a scratch doesn’t mean wondering if we might die. But, being clean has its drawbacks too, and sometimes there are things we use to stay clean that might not be all that great for us behind the scenes.
You may have heard that it is unhealthy to over “sanitize” your hands with sanitizer. One of the big arguments against the overuse of antibacterials is that they contain triclosan. Triclosan is a contributor to making bacterias resistant to antibiotics. Triclosan may lower your ability to fight bad bacteria, because it also kills your good bacteria. Government tests have also found that triclosan is a hormone disrupter. A University of Michigan study also found triclosan has a negative impact on the immune system. The cherry on the cake is that if a sanitizer has artificial fragrances, then along come the phthalates which made the Living to Smile Naughty List for proven damage to liver, lungs, kidneys and reproductive systems. (It gets really special when we think of young children with developing systems putting their hands in their mouth covered with scented triclosan.)
Ok, so you’re sold, but we all need to sanitize right? Who wants to get on the subway and hold onto a pole covered in humanity’s gift basket of germs? Not me. Here is an easy DIY hand sanitizer recipe that will kill the bad guys without taking out any civilians. This wonderful recipe can be whipped up and put into a travel size refillable container.
DIY All Natural Sanitizer
- 5-10 drops lavender or myrrh essential oil (Optional for scent)
- 30 drops tea tree essential oil – 0.5% concentration
- 1 Tablespoon witch hazel extract or high-proof vodka (Optional, but gives a one-two punch with the tea tree oil)
- 8 ounces 100% pure aloe vera gel
- ¼ teaspoon Vitamin E oil – natural preservative that will also help keep the hands soft (Optional)