How to Make CBD Infused Hand Sanitizer at Home

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Nowadays, the global concern over the novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19, has reached a peak, and many people are taking various precautions against contracting the virus. It is considered to have originated in Wuhan, China and is quickly spreading around the world.

Regular water and soap with proper scrubbing lifts the germ-laden mucus from the skin and then washes it away. Therefore, water and soap should always be the go-to solution before preparing food or eating, after visiting someone who is sick, coughing, sneezing, or after using a bathroom or whenever the hands are visibly dirty. Hand sanitizers represent another effective and convenient way to disinfect your skin if water and soap are not accessible. The upside of sanitizers is that it disinfects the bacteria while leaving your hands grease-free. In fact, a product can be marketed as a hand sanitizer if it contains isopropanol, ethanol, or benzalkonium chloride as an active ingredient. Although alcohol-based hand sanitizers can kill many types of various microbes very efficiently when used properly, consumers may wipe it off before it has dried or may not use a large enough amount of the sanitizers enough to disinfect the skin.

Overall, hand sanitizers are a pretty common product to carry around. People can find hand sanitizer stations in many malls, schools, and airports. People carry them in their purses, and it is not unusual to see a bottle clipped onto a child’s backpack nowadays. Recently, we have been seeing CBD just about everywhere, too. Products infused with CBD can be found in many places, and there are numerous dedicated stores that specialise in CBD. So, if we combine the two trends, what happens when CBD is mixed into a conventional sanitizer? Does it enhance it in any way?

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Although CBD, as an active ingredient, is less known in the modern market of hand sanitizers, CBD-infused hand sanitizer has many benefits over the conventional options. In this time of the significant shortage of hand sanitizers, people are on the hunt for more and more products that can be utilised for the sanitisation purposes. This is when CBD comes into the picture. What consumers need to know about CBD hand sanitizers is that they are made from the extracts of Cannabis sativa, and this is where CBD gets its antibacterial properties.

Let us explore this subject in more depth and gather some tips you can use to DIY a CBD-infused sanitizer at home with a few simple ingredients. 

Life in the midst of COVID-19

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Fighting through the COVID-19 pandemic has been a real challenge for all governments and the society. It is exceptionally important to practice cooperation and solidarity to tackle the virus and to mitigate the effects, often unintended, of measures designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Exceptional standards, as well as personal hygiene guidelines, will be fundamental to the success of the public health response and recovery from the pandemic.

Nowadays, coronavirus is dominating news around the world. It is an understatement to say that people are living in unprecedented and scary times. Because of the severe risk of catching the virus, along with having to quarantine away from family members and friends, many individuals are experiencing feelings of anxiety, stress, and uncertainty. As a matter of fact, it is hard to escape the stress during the pandemic. High levels of stress can frequently have a profound impact on the mental health and immune system. Physically, it can cause increased heart rate, sweating, and an increase in adrenaline. Stress can also cause binge eating, spiralling thoughts, and it can even impact sleep. These symptoms can be alarming, but they are the body’s natural reaction to perceiving a threat. The amazing news is that there are many things a person can do to minimise COVID-19 anxiety and stress, including the use of CBD.

Currently, people are panicked about the coronavirus, which has resulted in some basic necessities such as toilet paper, water, and non-perishable foods to sell out extremely fast, and thousands rush to stockpile supplies. Another hot item that is quickly disappearing from store shelves is hand sanitizer. Even giant online retailers like Amazon are having a hard time keeping such products in stock. A lot of third-party sellers are offering their own house brands of sprays hand and sanitizers. However, the items from Germ-X and Purell are harder to find if they are not already completely sold out.

Therefore, people might be thinking about ways to just make some at home. It’s just alcohol, right? Well, it is slightly more complicated than that. However, making homemade hand sanitizer shows how proactive people can be in protecting themselves and others from contracting the virus. Besides, the ingredients required to make a hand sanitizer at home people might already have on hand.

How to Protect Yourself and Others

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There is no found vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease, but there are a few practical ways to avoid being exposed to this virus. Coronavirus is considered to spread from person-to-person. Therefore, the highest risk of contracting the disease is between people who are in close contact with one another. The virus is usually transmitted through respiratory droplets produced when an infected individual sneezes, coughs, or talks. In fact, these droplets can land in the noses or mouths of other individuals nearby and can possibly inhale the droplets into the lungs. However, some recent studies have demonstrated that COVID-19 may be spread by individuals that don’t have any symptoms such as coughing.

Experts recommend putting distance between other people and yourself when you are outside your home and avoid close contacts with individuals who are sick, even inside the house. If possible, it is better to maintain six feet between the individual who is ill and other household members. It is necessary to remember that some individuals without symptoms may be able to spread the virus as well. So, it is necessary to avoid gathering in groups and stay away from crowded places. It is also essential to cover the nose and mouth with a face mask when around other people as you could spread COVID-19 to them even if you do not feel sick. Thus, everyone should wear a face mask or a scarf that cover the nose and the mouth when they have to go out in public places. Face masks may not be placed on those who have trouble breathing, young kids under the age of 2, or those who are incapacitated, unconscious, or unable to remove the mask without assistance. In fact, the face cover is implied to protect other individuals in case you are infected. Thus, if you do not have a face mask and you are in public, please remember to always cover the nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or cough or use the inside of your elbow.

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It is also advised to disinfect and clean frequently touched surfaces every day. They include doorknobs, tables, countertops, light switches, handles, phones, desks, keyboards, faucets, toilets, and sinks. If you think the surfaces might be contaminated, use disinfectant products, soap and water or a detergent to clean them.

The most important thing to know is that the best way to keep the hands clean is to wash them with water and soap for at least twenty seconds. It has also been emphasized that while alcohol-based hand sanitizers can effectively reduce the number of microbes on hands in some situations, they do not help get rid of every type of germ. Thus, to protect themselves from the virus, everyone should wash their hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds especially after visiting a public place, transport, or after coughing, blowing the nose, or sneezing. It is also recommended to avoid touching the nose, eyes, and mouth with unwashed hands.

In cases when water and soap are not readily available, it is strongly recommended to use hand sanitizers that contain at least 60% alcohol. It is necessary to cover all the surfaces of the hands with sanitizer and rub them together until the product dries on your skin.

The importance of handwashing

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Contaminated hands play a crucial role in transferring harmful particles from one host to another. An individual who practices improper hand hygiene can transfer pathogens to other people through contact with inanimate objects and surfaces, direct interpersonal communication, and food preparation. Hand-based transmission of pathogens is so ubiquitous that handwashing with water and soap has been claimed to be the best intervention to prevent various diseases, including diarrhoea and coronavirus. Evidence from several research studies suggests that handwashing promotion and education can significantly reduce the incidence of many diseases. Handwashing interventions have also been demonstrated to dramatically reduce the rate of respiratory illness in community settings around the world. However, the issue still remains, and most people do not wash their hands with water and soap at critical times, for example, before eating, before preparing food, after using the toilet, after visiting public places, and before feeding a child.

Significantly, the proximity and quantity of water have been demonstrated to correlate with the frequency of handwashing. For instance, globally, more than three billion people do not have household-level access to piped water, which results in a formidable challenge to regular handwashing with water and soap. Therefore, identifying alternative hand hygiene methods may be a critical step for reducing global mortality. As a result, alcohol-based hand sanitizers have been widely accepted for use in various facilities both in Europe and the United States.

In general, hand sanitizer formulations consist of isopropanol, ethanol, and propanol. Those ones that contain 60–80% alcohol act as a skin disinfectant by destroying proteins of pathogens. Typically, the correct use of hand sanitizers takes less time than handwashing, does not require water, and does not require drying hands with potentially contaminated surfaces, such as public hand driers or towels. A wide range of efficacy tests for hand sanitizers has been carried out on hands artificially contaminated with viruses and bacteria. The studies have shown hand sanitizers to be as or more efficient than handwashing with plain water and soap. 

Benefits of hand sanitizers 

Nowadays, alcohol-based hand rubs are the only known means for effectively and rapidly inactivating a wide range of potentially harmful microorganisms on hands. WHO strongly recommends alcohol-based hand rubs as there are a lot of factors in favour of their use:

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  • Intrinsic, evidence-based advantages of broad-spectrum microbicidal activity and fast-acting with minimal risks of generating resistance to antimicrobial agents;
  • Capacity to bring improved compliance with hand hygiene standards by making the process more convenient, faster, and immediately accessible;
  • Suitability for use in remote areas with lack of accessibility to sinks or other facilities for hand hygiene, including clean towels, water, etc. or resource-limited places;
  • Minimisation of risks from various adverse events because of increased safety associated with better tolerance and acceptability than other items;
  • Economic benefit by significantly reducing annual costs for hand hygiene, representing approximately one per cent of extra-costs caused by healthcare-associated infection.

WHO recommends the local or homemade production of hand sanitizers as an alternative when suitable commercial products are either too costly or unavailable. To help consumers and health-care facilities adopt alcohol-based hand rubs and achieve effective system change, WHO has identified formulations for the products’ local preparation.

How does a hand sanitizer work?

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The key ingredient in hand sanitizers is alcohol. In terms of chemistry, alcohols are organic molecules made of hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon. Propanol, ethanol and isopropanol are three well-known alcohols that serve as common ingredients in disinfectants because they are highly soluble in water.

Alcohols are potent because they destroy disease-causing agents by splitting cells into pieces, breaking apart proteins, or messing with a cell's metabolism. In other words, they are dissolving the outer coating of viruses and bacteria and exploding them. That is typically different from water and soap, which with a proper twenty-second scrub loosens grime, grease, and germs from the skin and washes them away, rather than killing the microbes.

Hand sanitizers with as little as 30% of alcohol have some pathogen-killing ability, but the effectiveness increases with higher alcohol concentration. Typically, its effectiveness seems to top out at about a 90-95% concentration. Another great strength of alcohol is that the bacteria it kills don't develop a resistance to it. Thus, alcohol does not lose effectiveness with continued use.

However, alcohol does not work for all germs. For example, Clostridium difficile, which causes life-threatening diarrhoea or Cryptosporidium, which is a parasite that causes cryptosporidiosis, are not killed by alcohols. Besides, hand sanitizers also do not remove harmful chemicals like heavy metals or pesticides, nor does hand sanitizer work well on extremely greasy or dirty hands. Overall, it is recommended to use hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol for maximum benefits and effectiveness.

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Can a hand sanitizer expire?

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Hand sanitizers do not expire. There will definitely be an expiration date on the bottle due to the regulations specifications that must be clearly labelled. The expiration date is supposed to be the last date at which the items contain the ingredients in the amount specified on their labels. In general, alcohol is a shelf-stable chemical according to its safety data sheet. This implies that if it is kept in a sealed container at room temperature, alcohol will remain at the same concentration for a long time.

Nevertheless, the alcohol evaporates quickly because of its low boiling point. Thus it can evaporate over some time when a product that contains alcohol is used, hence it gets opened and closed. Therefore, the concentration of alcohol in the hand sanitizer might start to decrease. Still, if a consumer keeps the cap closed and stores the product at room temperature, the shelf life of a sanitizer can be long-lasting.

Are hand sanitizers toxic?

Alcohols are thought to be safe for use as an antiseptic. In general, they have no toxic effect on the skin, although repeated use may cause mild irritation or dryness. However, several studies have demonstrated that repeated use of hand sanitizers is less irritating than handwashing with soap. It is also necessary to mention that damaged skin is more susceptible to irritation from alcohol. 

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CBD-infused products

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Compounds like CBD are known as cannabinoids. CBD is one of the well-known compounds found in marijuana and hemp. Cannabinoids can have several positive effects on human health. For instance, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) creates the psychoactive or “high” effect, which is typically associated with Cannabis. CBD’s impact, on the other hand, is different. CBD does not cause any psychoactive effects on consumers. Most of those who use it report that CBD makes them calmer without any negative impact on cognitive functions. 

Due to the stigma around cannabis, many people have doubts about the legality of CBD. While it is true that marijuana-derived products and marijuana are still illegal in most countries, hemp, which is another species of Cannabis sativa, has less than 0.2% THC. Up to this small trace amount of the THC compound is considered legal, hence why all the products that are made using hemp extracts with up to 0.2% of THC are also legal. 

Speaking of CBD products, there are a lot of different items out there. Many consumers are familiar with CBD tinctures or oils. However, CBD can be easily mixed in with just about anything. Some individuals like using CBD as a topical product where the CBD is mixed into skin creams and lotions. Other consumers prefer taking CBD orally in the form of capsules, just like taking a vitamin supplement. Others prefer CBD edibles represented in many different forms, found in everything from the pasta to gummy made using CBD. No matter what form people take it in, there are a lot of consumers who are seeing fantastic benefits from regular use. Since the researchers first figured out how to extract CBD, they have been looking into what exactly it can do. So far, they have identified its potential ability to alleviate the symptoms of depression and anxiety. It has also found that CBD is helpful for epilepsy. Significantly, the first CBD-based drug that was approved to keep epilepsy-induced seizures under control is prevalent nowadays. 

CBD as a disinfectant

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CBD has a wide range of positive effects, but those are just the tip of the iceberg. In the last few years, researchers have stumbled upon a new property of CBD that consumers found exciting. It was discovered that CBD may have antibacterial properties. In 2008, a study was conducted to identify how different cannabinoids interact with bacteria. The scientists found that most of the cannabinoids were successful in stemming the bacterial growth. However, the odd thing about that study is that while the cannabinoids seem to have an antibacterial nature, scientists are yet to identify how it works. 

In fact, most disinfectants work through oxidization or otherwise breaking down the membranes of bacteria. Still, no one can pin down the exact way that cannabinoids curb bacterial growth. Hopefully, it will not be too long until researchers understand how exactly CBD and other cannabinoids can hinder bacterial survival and growth. Anyway, the research into CBD’s antibacterial properties seems very encouraging. Therefore, many CBD manufacturers are experimenting with producing CBD hand sanitizers. Besides, CBD hand sanitizer can be easily made at home.

CBD in hand sanitizers

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While CBD may have some antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, it does not provide any antiviral protection. In hand sanitizers, alcohol is the virus-killing compound. The question is once the alcohol dries, and there is now only CBD left on the skin, does it help provide further protection? No one truly knows the answer, because there is still little research to support this claim.

Nowadays, most of the manufacturers who are crafting CBD hand sanitizers include more than just CBD for the product to work. Other ingredients are also added to help kill bacteria. Most of these items include isopropyl alcohol or ethyl alcohol, which are well-known potent disinfectants. This way, CBD kills some bacteria, and alcohols fight the remaining. Thus, it is potentially increasing the chance of proper and effective disinfection. Therefore, it is stressed that rubbing CBD oil into the hands will not have the same effect as a CBD hand sanitizer that is formulated with alcohols. Apart from the above-mentioned antibacterial properties, an extract of CBD is famous for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties when used topically. Indeed, it has been found over the years that CBD has a significant array of pharmacological effects, but these are yet to be confirmed with the help of clinical trials on human beings.

How effective are DIY CBD hand sanitizers?

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Homemade sanitizer is obviously better than nothing. However, commercially-made hand sanitizers are always better because they continuously undergo quality control to ensure effective alcohol content. Thus, this is one of the downsides to homemade hand sanitizers as it is hard to identify the exact alcohol content. Indeed, homemade products can be easily contaminated with incorrect measurements, ingredients, or insufficient alcohol to kill germs. Although the formula is quite simple, finding all the necessary ingredients for hand sanitizer may also be challenging. 

If a person chooses to make CBD hand sanitizer at home, it is extremely important he or she is working with clean tools, in a clean space, and washes the hands thoroughly before beginning the entire process. Besides, to make a strong hand sanitizer at home, it is recommended to follow the instructions carefully and take all the precautions. A consumer must use rubbing alcohol, which has a higher concentration. Therefore, no drinkable spirits are appropriate for making sanitizers. 

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How to make your own hand sanitizer at home?

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It can be quite challenging to measure alcohol content in homemade sanitizers; that is why commercial sanitizers are usually recommended. However, due to shortages during the coronavirus outbreak, a lot of individuals started making their own hand sanitizers as an alternative or for money-saving purposes. In a pinch, a person may be able to make a strong hand sanitizer at home. When instructions are followed carefully, you end up with a hand sanitizer with the required alcohol concentration that can be used as an effective disinfectant. Particular attention should be paid to the ratio of the main compounds. Otherwise, there is a risk of creating a formula that is not effective or is too harsh for the skin. Here is an instruction of how to make your own sanitizer infused with CBD. 

What a person will need:

  • Two-part isopropyl alcohol with a concentration of 91%;
  • One part aloe vera gel or glycerin;
  • Essential oils, such as lavender or lemon (optional);
  • Whisk;
  • Clean containers for preparation;
  • An air-tight container for storage.


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  1. Combine glycerin or the aloe vera gel with the isopropyl alcohol in a clean container. To get one cup of hand sanitizer, combine ⅓ cup of glycerin or gel with ⅔ cup of rubbing alcohol.
  2. Mix everything thoroughly with a whisk or spoon to ensure that the alcohol is evenly distributed throughout the gel. 
  3. If a person is using an essential oil, it is advised to stir in five drops. This is absolutely optional and is only designed to improve the scent of the sanitizer.
  4. Alcohol usually evaporates with time, so it is recommended to use an air-tight container, which will keep your sanitizer effective for a more extended period of time. A squeeze or pump bottle can significantly minimize evaporation while maintaining the sanitizer easily accessible. However, please make sure the container for the hand sanitizer is air-tight and clean. 
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How to Infuse Your Hand Sanitizer with CBD?

As it has been previously mentioned, hand sanitizers can be hard to come by while we are in the thick of the pandemic. For those cases when hand washing is not an option, a DIY CBD hand sanitizer can help keep your hands germ-free while also adding in some amazing CBD skincare benefits. 

When applied topically, CBD oil acts as a natural humectant, meaning it preserves and retains moisture. This is an essential aspect of topical applications since CBD oil can penetrate the skin; consumers will be able to achieve optimal moisturization benefits.

It is advised to add 1 ½ teaspoon of all-natural CBD Oil to the formulation that has been mentioned above. It is suggested to use full-spectrum CBD oil in DIY CBD hand sanitizers. Such CBD oils combine a broad spectrum of cannabinoids made from certified organic hemp with medium-chain triglyceride oil for a convenient liquid form that will mix well with the rest of the DIY hand sanitizer ingredients. Medium-chain triglyceride oil also serves as a carrier oil, which is ideal for frequent topical application. Besides, a consumer can always choose between raw hemp oil, decarboxylated hemp oil, and decarboxylated and filtered hemp oil liquid options.

How to Choose CBD Oil to Infuse a Sanitiser

CBD products are not adequately regulated nowadays, which means it can be hard to know precisely what a person is buying. That is why it is essential to look for quality CBD products that contain what the packaging says they do. It is strongly recommended to search for products made from organic hemp, which is subject to agricultural regulations. Natural ingredients imply a person is less likely to consume harmful pesticides or other chemicals.

As with any other supplement, the quality of CBD that a person buys is a crucial factor that will ultimately determine its safety and effectiveness. Poor quality CBD oil may even include harmful toxins, so consumers must keep the following points in mind before making a final decision.

The Origin of CBD is Important

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How CBD oil is extracted must be a crucial consideration for customers because the quality of the product relies heavily on its source. Indeed, one of the universal rules of manufacturing and the best ways to ensure quality is to work with raw materials of the highest standard.

Although CBD is a natural compound, the quality of the oil that is eventually purchased will be profoundly affected by its origin. In terms of the source, it should be noted that hemp plants are regarded to be “hyperaccumulators.” This implies that the plant’s roots are great natural absorbents and have a tendency to take in toxins that are present in the ground where it has been cultivated.

Therefore, if CBD has been extracted from a hemp plant that was farmed in well-treated and fertile soil, it is likely to be of considerable purity and high quality. However, if the reverse situation is real and the hemp plant was grown in an area full of led or mercury, the subsequent CBD oils will contain a high level of toxins and could even become unsafe for consumption. Conversely, compliant and accredited producers will only source hemp plants that have been grown in furtive and rich soil, so that the customers achieve the best possible value.

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The Extraction Method

This principle is even more important in case of CBD as less reputable manufacturers may use questionable extraction processes to slash production costs. The issue here is that cheaper extraction methods usually require the use of toxic solvents, such as propane, pentane, hexane, and butane. These solvents are all considered as hydrocarbon gases and can be found in petroleum, while butane and propane are also used in gas stoves.

Many research studies have demonstrated that CBD oil should be extracted by means of what is known as a “supercritical CO2 extraction” method. The method requires the use of carbon dioxide. This extraction method is regarded as environmentally-friendly and extremely safe as it uses virtually no toxins.

The main issue with this extraction method is that it typically requires considerable production expertise and expensive equipment, which is always reflected by the price of the finished product. This results in stark contrast with cheaper production methods, which is why the extraction method needs to be the key watchword when searching the marketplace.

Lab Reports

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All CBD items brought to market should have passed and undergone independent third-party Lab testing. So what should the lab reports include? First of all, the concentration of CBD. Secondly, CBD oil will also contain several additional cannabinoids, such as CBG, CBC, and CBN. Lab reports also provide an opportunity to confirm the THC levels in the item, which should be 0.2% or under. Third, high-quality CBD oil should be free from pesticides and 100% natural. If any pesticides are listed, this is a serious red flag that a consumer should refrain from buying this product.

The vague term “microbes” includes a wide range of organisms, some of which are good and others that are bad. Nevertheless, it is never a good sign for the CBD oil to have a living organism, so this is another thing to watch for when reviewing lab reports.

Finally, chemical solvents are the essential compounds to look for in third-party lab reports. If there are any traces of glycols, such as propylene glycol or polyethene glycol, consumers should discard the associated items immediately. These solvents can cause cancer and wreak tremendous physical damage over time.

Here are some products to name a few that meet the above-mentioned criteria that you can use for creating a CBD infused hand sanitiser:

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  1. CBD OIL DROPS - 1000MG

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How to properly use your homemade sanitizer? 

It is advised to remember that the handmade hand sanitizer still contains ingredients that are harmful if ingested. Therefore, please make sure it is clearly labelled, in a resealable container, and out of the reach of children.

In fact, homemade sanitizers are usually runnier than commercially-made ones, so they can be challenging to use. A pump or squeeze container can make a homemade sanitizer easier to use without spillage.

To utilize hand sanitizers effectively, it is advised to squeeze out enough sanitizer to cover the full surface of your hands. Then, rub the hands together, effectively coating all surfaces. Finally, continue to rub the hands together until they are dry. 

Verified by a Healthcare Professional

Anastasiia Myronenko

Anastasiia Myronenko

Anastasiia Myronenko is a Medical Physicist actively practicing in one of the leading cancer centers in Kyiv, Ukraine. She received her master’s degree in Medical Physics at Karazin Kharkiv National University and completed Biological Physics internship at GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research, Germany. Anastasiia Myronenko specializes in radiation therapy and is a fellow of Ukrainian Association of Medical Physicists.