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What are the Different Types of Hand Sanitizer Wipes?

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  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 27 October 2016
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Hand antiseptic products, like hand sanitizer gels and hand sanitizer wipes, have become very popular. Individuals can use these products to disinfect their hands and kill germs when hand washing isn't possible. There are a few types of hand sanitizer wipes to fit just about everyone's wants and needs. Traditional hand wipes contain large amounts of alcohol as their main ingredient, but there are also wipes that are available without alcohol for people with sensitive skin. Wipes that moisturize as well as kill germs are also available.

Ethyl alcohol is the typical ingredient in most hand sanitizer wipes. Most brands have an alcohol content of between 60 and 75 percent. Alcohol has been proven to kill nearly all germs that can end up on the hands of an ordinary person by penetrating the micro organism's wall and breaking down its proteins. Alcohol is a drying agent, however, and many people find that traditional sanitizer wipes dry their hands, resulting in uncomfortable cracking of the skin.

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There are a number of brands of alcohol-free hand sanitizers and sanitizing wipes on the market today. Many of these are natural hand sanitizers, and they don't typically dry out the skin as many traditional sanitizers do. Some of the active ingredients in these wipes include benzathonium chloride, benzalkonium chloride, and essential plant oils, including thyme oil. Although they usually cost a bit more than other types of hand sanitizer wipes, they work just as well as traditional wipes, without the risk of seriously dry hands.

For individuals with very dry skin, many companies produce hand sanitizer wipes with added hand moisturizers. These companies claim that their wipes help people maintain smooth, soft hands, as well as kill almost all of the germs that reside there. Moisturizers that are commonly added to these types of wipes are aloe, vitamin E, and lanolin.

Like many other products hand sanitizer wipes may not work as well as advertised unless they are used properly. To use them on very dirty hands, the surface grime must first be wiped off with one wipe or cleaned with soap and water. Afterward, a second wipe can be used to remove any germs that are not visible to the naked eye.

To kill the remaining germs, it is recommended that an individual first wipe off the areas of the hands that do not come in contact with many surfaces. These areas include the backs of the hands and between the fingers. When these have been wiped off, the area on and around the fingernails should be cleaned. Finally, the palms of the hands can be sanitized by rubbing the wipe between the palms of the hands.

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