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Dr. Shultz's vs Traditional Hand Sanitizer

A side comparison of the doc's formula vs Purell Hand Sanitizer, Bath and Body Works Hand sanitizer, Touchland, and more. See what hand sanitizer ingredients each has.

Here's the thing, there's a lot of hand sanitizers out there. So we decided to put all the top players head to head.

Purell 2oz Hand Sanitiezer

PURELL® Advanced Hand Sanitizer Soothing Gel

Price: $1.99 - $2.49

Active Ingredients: Ethyl alcohol 70% v/v

Inactive Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Isopropyl Alcohol, Caprylyl Glycol, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Glycerin, Aminomethyl Propanol, Fragrance (Parfum), Tocopheryl Acetate, Isopropyl Myristate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Yellow 5 (Cl 19140), Blue 1 (Cl 42090)

Our Take: This is a lot of ingredients. The dye, the compounds, and high alcohol content, all sound like extra stuff you don't need. Honestly, of most sanitizer producers, Purell has one of the best formulas. However, the things that really got to us were the extra dryness from an uber-high alcohol content, and the strong chemical smell.

The CDC, Center For Disease Control, recently stated, "many studies have found that sanitizers with an alcohol concentration between 60–95% are more effective at killing germs than those with a lower alcohol concentration or non-alcohol-based hand sanitizers "

Overall, its just your every day hand sanitizer. 
germ x hand sanitizer product comparison photo

Germ-X Hand Sanitizer, Aloe, Travel Size, 3oz

Price: $4.14 Amazon

Active Ingredients: Ethyl alcohol 62% v/v

Inactive Ingredients: Aloe Barbadensis Gel, Carbomer, FD&C Blue No.1, FD&C Yellow No. 5, Fragrance, Glycerin, Isopropyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Myristate, Propylene Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Water.

Our Take: So Purell vs Germ X? To be honest not much. Both of these are huge companies and its hard to make sanitizer better because it ends up being more expensive. Often times though, it comes down to feel, and Purell feels less sticky to us. Basically, they compete on sizing, and advertising as best for travel, etc. Both gave us a headache with the awful smell.

label of bath and body works pocket bac sanitizer

Bath and Body Works - Their "Traditional" Stuff- Sweet Pea Hand Sanitizer - 1oz

Price: $1.25 (or $2.50 for 2oz) Bath and Body Works 

Active Ingredients: Ethyl alcohol 68% v/v

Inactive Ingredients: Alcohol, Fragrance, Carbomber, Lactose, Propylene Glycol, Aminomethyl Propanol, Isopropyl Miristate, Hydroxethyl Urea, Wheat Amino Acids, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycerin, Retinyl Palmitate, Hydroxypropyl Mthylcellulose Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Elaeis Guineensis Extract, Olea Europea Fruit Extract, Honey Extract, Coconut Fruit Extract, Ultramarines (CI77007), Red (Cl17200), Ext.Violet 2 (Cl60730), Yellow 5 (Cl19140)

Our Take: Clearly, smell matters - and we get it! But good smell and quality formula shouldn't be mutually exclusive. Aside from putting "moisturizing beads" in to "soften your skin", which we brushed on in our microbead article, the inactive ingredients seem like an armada of things don't need on your hands. Propylene glycol, is essentially anti-freeze, and known as a skin irritant. Or for example, Retinyl Palmitate, which has been proven as a reproductive toxicant and potentiall cancer causing. Just another cheap sanitizer, but it comes it all types of artificial smells! But it looks like B&BW caught on because then they made: 

product shot of bath and body works frozen lake hand sanitizer

Bath and Body Works - Their "Good" Stuff- Frozen Lake Gentle Foaming Hand Sanitizer - 1.8oz

Price: $5.50 Bath & Body Works

Active Ingredients: Ethyl alcohol 62% v/v

Inactive Ingredients: Water, Dimethyl Ether, Isobutane, Cetearyl alcohol, Fragrance, Cataereth-25, Butane, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice. 

Our Take: First off, for some reason you cannot find the ingredients on the product pages via their website. This to us, was a little suspicious. We actually had to go out and buy one to make this. According to the New Jersey Department of Health, Isobutane and Butane have both been found to be skin irritants. At the end of the day, its just too much.

Dr. Shultz Essential Oil Hand Sanitizer - 2oz

Price: $4.99 

Active Ingredients: Ethyl alcohol 62%

Inactive Ingredients: Aloe VeraCarbomber, Deionized water, Dr. Shultz's Original Essential and Fragrance Oil Blend,  Triisopropanolamine, Silicone, Vitamin B, Vitamin D, Vitamin E

Our Take: Only 8 carefully sourced ingredients (compared to B&BW 18, Purell 12). We want you to know why each one is there. - so here's the scoop on every, last ingredient.

Aloe Vera, the real stuff, the good stuff, that like, helps burns.

Carbomber - this is in just about every gel out there. It is just hard to make a gel without this in it, or a weak substitute, and since we know spray isn't quite as good gel for killing germs, our formula needs it for now - Our main goal is clean healthy hands.

Water is water, and we keep our oil blends on the low, so that someone cant easily recreate it ;)

Triisopropanolamine - Sounds intimidating. This is whats called an emulsifier, which helps the oils and vitamins blend into the formula and deliver to your hands!

Silicone, also intimidating, but dermatologists agree it is safe for the skin. Silicone helps the performance of the product because of its fluid properties. 

“Topically applied silicones are generally considered safe. Any claims that silicones can be problematic or dangerous for the skin when used topically have not been substantiated with scientific research,” “Silicone is both hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic and not known to sensitize the skin.” -Sejal Shah, a NYC-based dermatologist and founder of SmarterSkin Dermatology

Lastly, the best Vitamins for your skin. Non-GMO Vitamins B, D, and E infused into each pump with essential oils. Some stuff to hold it all together, make sure the hand sanitizer is killing germs, and thats it! There's also bunch of different suppliers for each component, ranging in quality - and we always chose the best regardless of price.

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