Update 04/03/2020: More scientific evidence and research has come to light on the efficacy of Benzalkonium Chloride against Coronavirus, and potentially the reasons behind the CDC’s stance on the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers at this time. We invite you to read the following two articles that discuss the active ingredient in our hand sanitizer so you can make your own informed purchasing decision: “EXCLUSIVE: Sanitizer opposed by CDC kills coronavirus “surrogate” in lab tests” ; “Doctor challenges CDC claims on hand sanitizer against coronavirus.”
Please meet the newest member of our family, Lavender & Eucalyptus-Infused Hand Sanitizer. We’ve been diligently working on this product for over a year, and just recently received our FDA registration allowing us to sell this carefully-crafted Benzalkonium Chloride-based hand sanitizer formulation.
As with everything we do, providing health-promoting products is our #1 priority at EuroSpa Aromatics. So we thought we’d give you some more information that can hopefully offer some reassurance during this time of concern and confusion about the Coronavirus disease, also known as COVID-19.
Today there is one point of agreement among all the medical experts in the CDC, WHO and American Medical Association (AMA): WASH YOUR HANDS! If you can’t wash your hands as directed by the experts, use a hand sanitizer until you can.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recognized two types of hand sanitizing formulations: the first is alcohol-based utilizing a minimum level of alcohol. The FDA has found that two types of alcohol are acceptable, isopropyl or ethyl.
Isopropyl alcohol is derived from the petro-chemical propene and is distilled to a 99% level of concentration or strength. It has a wide range of uses from pharmaceutical to industrial but is never suitable for ingestion. In its 99% concentration, it has a lethal dosage rate of 3600 mgs/kg of body weight. Ethyl alcohol is derived from grain and is the type of alcohol found in fermented beverages, thus it is federally regulated and must be denatured for industrial or cosmetic use. Typical denaturants render ethyl alcohol unusable for beverage purposes. In its 100% concentration (200 proof when beverage), it has a lethal dosage rate of 2000 mgs/kg of body weight. Both alcohols are considered as hazardous materials because of their flammability for shipping, handling and storage.
The second FDA-recognized hand sanitizing formulation is a Benzalkonium Chloride formulation. Benzalkonium Chloride is a compound reacted to produce surface-acting properties useful for disinfecting, laundry detergent and textile fabric softening. For the FDA’s purposes, the disinfecting antimicrobial and antiseptic properties of Benzalkonium Chloride are what make it useful in a hand sanitizer formula. When at levels of 0.1% or lower, there are no hazards surrounding this highly effective broad-spectrum sanitizing compound.
For your safety, the United States Food and Drug Administration regulates the manufacture and sale of hand sanitizing products. Each manufacturer of a hand sanitizing product is required by federal law to register their manufacturing facility and their product label with the FDA. The FDA does not “approve” any manufacturer or formulation. Anyone making such a claim is either ignorant of the facts, is possibly attempting to deceive the consumer, or misrepresenting their product.
EuroSpa Aromatics has considered the benefits of both alcohol-based and Benzalkonium Chloride-based formulations and has decided to opt for the Benzalkonium Chloride formula. Because of the uniqueness of the COVID-19 virus and the urgency for so many other issues facing the medical community, no specific testing has been performed for efficacy against COVID-19. But! There is testing that has demonstrated virucidal properties of Benzalkonium Chloride. Snyder Manufacturing Corporation’s (EuroSpa Aromatics’ parent company) manufacturing site in Long Beach, California and our product label EuroSpa Aromatics Hand Sanitizer have both been registered with the FDA and are in compliance with their regulation.
Part of our decision-making process has been to weigh the advantages of Benzalkonium Chloride and alcohol for overall efficacy, risks for the consumer, and long-term usage. While alcohol is effective, there is a very crucial feature of any sanitizing product’s efficacy: contact time. A contact time of 15 seconds is recognized as a minimum. Alcohol typically evaporates in 8 to 10 seconds. Benzalkonium Chloride formulations well exceed 15 seconds before evaporating. In addition to the lengthier contact time, there is a residual protection effect of the Benzalkonium Chloride formula, unlike alcohol, that lasts 2 to 4 hours.
In order to slow alcohol from evaporating quickly, gel thickeners are added. These thickeners make alcohol less effective with repeated use because they make the hands dirtier rather than cleaner as the thickening polymers entrap dead skin cells on the skin. One more reason to choose the Benzalkonium Chloride formula.
One other obvious concern regarding alcohol is flammability. Alcohol-based sanitizers can have a flash point of as low as 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Consumers have experienced serious burns when using sanitizers with alcohol and static electricity has ignited the alcohol. Alcohol does burn with a relatively cool flame but it still can quickly cause 1st degree burns and even 2nd and 3rd degree burns when spilled on clothing. Benzalkonium Chloride formulations at FDA-recognized levels are non-flammable.
For those who are in situations requiring constant hand sanitizer use, alcohol can strip away the skin’s sebum and natural oils. This leaves the skin more susceptible to organisms and infection. Our unique Benzalkonium Chloride formulation has added skin conditioning and emollients that help prevent skin dryness without the use of PEG’s (PolyEthylene Glycols, a skin lubricant commonly used to leave a slick feeling on your skin), polymer thickeners, or silicones.
We do not approach this very serious issue of hand sanitizing lightly. For all the reasons listed above, our EuroSpa Aromatics Hand Sanitizer is based on Benzalkonium Chloride technology and will help protect you. We have taken the added step of infusing the Benzalkonium Chloride formula with the beneficial properties of pure 80/85 Eucalyptus Oil and 4042 Lavender oil. We thought hand sanitizing should be effective, smell nice and come with the added benefits of these fantastic essential oils. But, don’t forget, WASH YOUR HANDS!! There is no substitute for the efficacy of thoroughly washing your hands.
The active ingredient in our unique Benzalkonium Chloride technology is manufactured in Cincinnati, Ohio. Our bottles and sprayers come from Streator, Illinois and Brea, California. Our labels are printed in Huntington Beach, California. Our corrugated packaging is manufactured in Corona, California. Our manufacturing plant and offices are in Long Beach, California and employ local residents.
EuroSpa Aromatics has been concerned about your health since 1977 when we first introduced all-natural pure Eucalyptus Oil products into spas and wellness centers where steam rooms developed offensive odors. All of our blends are carefully formulated, using only the finest ingredients available on the world market. We always deliver the highest quality at the lowest price, while also sharing with our consumers an experience that they will love.