Hand Sanitizer Recalls Are on the Rise
The FDA’s do-not-use list of dangerous hand sanitizers continues to grow daily as more than 115 sanitizers have been recalled or recommended for recall. At the onset of COVID, consumers rushed to buy any sanitizer they could find paying little or no attention to the brand or its ingredients. But as months have passed, consumers and government agencies have learned that not all sanitizers are created equal. Even Hello Kitty branded hand sanitizer made the recall list, so we urge you to be careful about what you are buying and applying to your skin.
The FDA first warned consumers and healthcare providers in June about the dangers of sanitizers that were labeled to contain ethanol, but when lab-tested were found to contain methanol or wood alcohol. This dangerous and potentially life-threatening substance when applied to the skin or ingested, is known to cause nausea, headaches, vomiting, impaired vision, blindness, seizures, permanent damage to the nervous system and even death.
Ineffective Against Fighting Germs
While some manufacturers dangerously added methanol to their products, other companies were cutting corners by producing products made with insufficient ethyl alcohol or isopropyl alcohol. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have stated that hand sanitizers need to contain at least 60% ethyl alcohol or isopropyl alcohol. Sanitizers with less than 60% (1) may not work well on many types of germs, and (2) may merely reduce the growth of germs but not actually kill them.
What You Need to Know
For over 10 years now, we’ve urged customers to read labels, focus on natural ingredients and know what they are applying to their skin. Like it or not, most of us are using more hand sanitizer than ever before. And that will be the norm for months and potentially years to come.
Protect yourself and your family by following these simple recommendations:
- Buy only from reputable brands you know and trust
- Look for the Made in the USA label
- Hand sanitizers should be used in situations when you can’t wash your hands with soap and water; Nothing beats soap and water
- Switch sanitizers if the one you are using is causing your hands to dry out or even crack
- Read product reviews online before purchasing
- Check the sanitizers you own or plan to buy against FDA sanitizer recall list
The Bottom Line
Soap and water are your best option to prevent the spread of germs. However, if handwashing isn’t an option, use a high-quality alcohol-based sanitizer from a brand you know and trust.