Can You Add Essential Oil to Hand Sanitizer?

Can you add essential oil to hand sanitizer (2)

Can you add essential oil to hand sanitizer? This was a question many people asked last year and the year before during the height of the pandemic. Hand sanitizers were invented sometime in the 1980s, and at the time, they were a novelty. Why so?

Simply because they allowed people to clean their hands on the go and as many times as they wished. But never in the last thirty years was there a demand for sanitizers like there was during the pandemic. Due to shortages, many people, including health experts, started substituting certain ingredients for others that were readily available, like alcohol and essential oils. This led to quality control issues with health authorities discouraging the adding of essential oils hand sanitizers.

Is it wrong to add essential oils to hand sanitizers, or is it a good practice? Let’s find out.

Adding essential oils to hand sanitizers

Essential oils are very good organic oils for general purposes but adding them to hand sanitizers does not make them effective. It is not that the practice is bad or harmful, but the problem with this practice is that you will not be able to ascertain whether the sanitizer will be effective against germs.

The health authorities of many countries regulate medications produced within their jurisdiction, including sanitizers, and they test for quality control before granting such a product their seal of approval.

So while making DIY hand sanitizers in the midst of scarcity is not a bad practice, it is difficult to test for its quality, especially if you don’t have testing tools of your own. Furthermore, using products that offer you little or no protection is a health risk you want to avoid at all cost.

Effective ingredients for DIY hand sanitizers

There are certain ingredients that came in handy during the period when there was tremendous scarcity in the market for hand sanitizer. And if there’s anything we learned during the pandemic, it is that man can improvise and adapt in the midst of uncertainty. Here are some essential oil alternatives.


Alcohol is one effective solution because it preserves water-based products. High proof alcohol is more potent against germs, and they are used in medicated spirit and other health and wellness products. If you add it to your hand sanitizer, you sustain or increase its effectiveness, not reduce it.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is another very effective solution, but it should be used with care. Only a minimal volume is required for your hand sanitizers. We discourage peroxide usage unless you have a measurement kit to measure the amount of peroxide you add since too much of it will irritate your skin. Adding an anti-oxidant like Vitamin E oil will reduce the harshness of the solution.

Making your own hand sanitizer

Learning how to make your own hand sanitizer is a DIY skill that will stay with you forever. Should the world experience the kind of scarcity and uncertainty of the last few years, You can protect yourself and your loved ones using your knowledge.

Making your own hand sanitizer is possible, but you require ingredients and tools such as

  • Distilled water
  • 99 isopropyl alcohol

The use of vodka and aloe Vera gel is not advisable because they are not very effective germ-fighting ingredients. If you wish to add essential oil to your solution, you may do so but only moderately. Adding essential oils has their benefits that may not be linked to germ-fighting effects. They are

Immunity Booster: Some essential oils like Chamomile and Lavender boost immunity because of their organic compounds. Tea Tree oil is also very good. But you don’t have to add it to your homemade hand sanitizer, though. Diffusing it into the air will have a positive effect on your immune system.

Moisturizing effect: Sanitizers are alcohol-based, and they may cause skin dryness the more you use them. To keep your skin moist, you can apply a few drops of essential oil to your hand and rub them all over after sanitizing.

Post wash solution: Did you know that you can wash your hands with soap that contains essential oil properties? Doing so will not only eliminate germs but also nourish your skin.

Regular Application: If you make it a habit of using essential oils as part of your daily routine, you will enjoy all the health benefits inherent in its usage. Nothing can beat the effect of washing your hands with soap and rinsing them under running water for 20 seconds, but we don’t always have the time to do this, especially when we are on the road. But if we apply other helpful habits such as using hand sanitizers and essential oils, our health will be better for it.

How to make Homemade Hand sanitizer with essential oil

If you want to make homemade hand sanitizer with essential oil, here are the ingredients you will need.

Ingredients: An essential oil blend product (There are quite a few sold at superstores and online), filtered water.

The essential oil blend you buy should have disinfectant properties, and the volume of the ingredients you use should depend on the volume of sanitizer you want to make.

Just pour your disinfectant essential oil and distilled water into a bowl and mix properly before you use.


Can you add essential oil to hand sanitizer? There are no risks involved in this practice, but it is not advisable to do so, except you have the testing kit to test for safety and efficacy. DIY sanitizers may or may not be effective depending on the ingredients used and the volume. So if you must add essential oils to your formula, we advise you to acquire testing kits to ensure you are doing it right.

Can you add essential oil to hand sanitizer FAQ

Why is it wrong to add essential oils to hand sanitizer?

Adding essential oils to hand sanitizers is not advised, especially if you lack the tools to test for effectiveness.

What other ways can I use essential oil to protect myself?

You can use essential oil to boost your immunity, moisturize your skin or improve mood.

Can essential oil aid sleep?

Yes, it can. Oils like Lavender and Clove relax the brain muscles and induce a state of calmness.

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