CBD Hand Sanitizer: Fix or Fad?

Toilet paper. Lysol wipes. Thermometers. These are just a few items that we found ourselves struggling to get our hands on at the height of the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses like distilleries and hemp companies quickly pivoted to reduce the shortage of sanitizers. They temporarily converted their operations to produce these products. Some have been altruistic, donating their products to healthcare providers and community members in need. Others have seen a way to profit off of the Covid-19 crisis. Hemp manufacturers in particularly have hyped their advantage: they can offer CBD hand sanitizers.

A person dispensing CBD hand sanitizer from a pump bottle

What are the facts?

Currently, there is high demand for cleaning products. As a result, people are going to take what they can get. But does CBD hand sanitizer really work, and is it worth the sky-high price tag? The main antibacterial and antimicrobial component of hand sanitizer is ethyl or isopropyl alcohol. So what would adding CBD even do? There is some preliminary research that CBD may have antibacterial properties. Thus, the alleged appeal of hand sanitizers infused with CBD is that they further accelerate this bacterial and death.

Don’t be fooled, though! The World Health Organization has published guidelines for making hand sanitizer when a commercial alternative isn’t available. Their standards are well documented and prove that alcohol is the active ingredient in sanitizers. They do not become any better when other ingredients are added. While it’s likely that CBD doesn’t hurt, you should not buy into the hype that it makes the products more effective than normal sanitizers. The verdict: more hype than fact!

One thing is for sure, please do not put CBD oil on your hands thinking it will sanitize them. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are the guaranteed way to sanitize effectively! Whether someone has added CBD to them or not, this is true. When in doubt, it’s best to go tried-and-true: wash your hands the old fashioned way with soap and warm water. Be sure to follow CDC guidelines on thorough hand washing by counting to at least 20 while you scrub. If you’re not sure, reach out to your friends who are nurses for reassurance, and don’t forget to thank them for their work before national nurse appreciation week ends!

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