How to Make Your Own Hand Cleanser

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Aloe vera acts as the moisturizing ingredient in this simple sanitizer recipe. Using only four ingredients, it's the perfect recipe for learning how to make your own hand sanitizer.
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In "The Country Almanac for Housekeeping Techniques," Richard Freudenberger and the editors of "BackHome Magazine" have collected hundreds of formulas for effective cleaning, gardening and home maintenance — as well as ways that our ancestors saved on heating bills, prevented costly repairs and maintained a cozy, charming home with little besides ingenuity.

Recent studies show that modern commercial household cleaners are causing serious health issues for individuals and their families. The Country Almanac of Housekeeping Techniques That Save You Money (Fair Winds Press, 2012) by Richard Freudenberger and the editors of Back Home Magazine shows you how to keep a clean and healthy home for just pennies a day. Using a collection of formula for effective cleaning, gardening and home maintenance. Don’t just clean your household, get the longest life out of every item. The following excerpt explains how to make your own hand cleanser.

This recipe is not a substitute for cleaning solutions as recommended by the CDC. Please follow the CDC’s protocol on handwashing and disinfecting solutions to protect against COV-19 if absolute sterilization is required.

How To Make Your Own Hand Cleanser

Cost savings
You’ll spend about equal, but win by making a healthy alternative to drying commercial cleansers.

This moisturizing hand-cleanser contains no alcohol like off-the-shelf varieties.

Pocket-size gel hand cleansers are handy for on-the-go “cleanup,” but these formulas are drying, costly, and contain 60 to 90 percent alcohol. Why rub a formula on your hands that is potentially toxic before you eat? The risk elevates for mothers who carry cleansers to clean children’s hands. The good news: You can make your own safe, affordable hand cleansers.

Witch hazel, tea tree oil, and peppermint have antiseptic and astringent properties. They’re great germ killers. Aloe vera will prevent the skin from drying out—a welcome alternative to commercial cleansers that leave hands parched.

Note: Even use of this all-natural solution should be limited to a few times daily for those with sensitive skin.


• 1 cup (235 ml) pure aloe vera gel
• 1 to 2 teaspoons (15 to 28 ml) witch hazel
• 3 to 4 drops tea tree essential oil
• 3 to 4 drops peppermint essential oil

Step 1: Stir together ingredients. Measure the ingredients and stir together in a mixing bowl.

Step 2: Adjust aloe vera content. To thicken the solution, add more aloe vera gel one teaspoon at a time.

Step 3: Package the product. Travel-size toiletry bottles are ideal for toting this hand cleanser. Save and clean empty bottles for reuse if you don’t want to invest in empty new ones (available at most drugstores).

More from The Country Almanac of Housekeeping Techniques

• Homemade Household Products from Under the Kitchen Sink
• DIY Recycled, Wooden Compost Bin
• Cleaning Appliances with Baking Soda and Vinegar

Reprinted with permission from The Country Almanac of Housekeeping Techniques That Save You Money: Folk Wisdom for Keeping Your House Clean, Green, and Homey (Fair Winds Press, 2012), by Richard Freudenberger and the Editors of Backhome Magazine.