Homemade Natural Hygiene Products [hand sanitizer, face mask, cleaners, humidifier]

homemade natural face masks

In 2020 the USA leads in the number of COVID-19 confirmed cases and deaths.

The USA is a global leader once again. Unfortunately, it’s not a record anyone could be proud of.

WHO reports data that you can see for yourself. WHO is a reliable source that shows weekly updated COVID-19 data.

Actually, it is better that you see for yourself.

Way better.

The latest statistics, charts, and map data will shock you and make you more cautious.

They should.

You can witness the seriousness of the situation on global, regional, and country level.

43,540,739 cases globally and 8,611,256 cases in the USA should make you rethink your safety precautions, hygiene, and cleaning methods.

Because this is all too important to know, I started the article with some general information on how the virus spreads. So, bear with me.

Then, I have included the best recipes for homemade natural hygiene products. You can DIY hand sanitizers, face masks, soap, dishwashing detergent, laundry detergent, etc.

I’ll show you how.

Fight COVID-19 better than Trump

COVID-19 has turned the whole world upside down. Viruses are never on hiatus.

Nature magazine writes how Trump seriously damaged science, institutions, environmental and health regulations by misrepresenting the threat of coronavirus and undermined efforts to contain it. He intervened in FDA and CDC, not to mention offered his own ill-advised health guidance.

“This is not just ineptitude, it’s sabotage.

He has sabotaged efforts to keep people safe.”

Jeffrey Shaman, an epidemiologist 

Washington Post writes about the GHS (Global Health Security) Index’s latest findings. It is the first comprehensive assessment of global health security capabilities in 195 countries conducted by more than 100 researchers.

According to the GHS report none of these 195 countries — the U.S. included — is fully prepared for a pandemic. Factors that drive the U.S. score down are risks of social unrest and terrorism and vulnerability to biological threats.

This is Joe Biden’s reaction.

@JoeBiden tweeted:

“We are not prepared for a pandemic. Trump has rolled back progress President Obama and I made to strengthen global health security. We need leadership that builds public trust, focuses on real threats, and mobilizes the world to stop outbreaks before they reach our shores.”

This is how Barrack Obama reacted.

@BarackObama tweeted:

“Eight months into the pandemic, as new cases are breaking records, we need an administration that’s not going to wave the white flag. A year ago today, @JoeBiden was talking about the leadership we need to get prepared for a pandemic, and he’s got a plan to get it under control.”

Related post: How To Survive Political Turmoil

On the other hand, Trump survived COVID-19 without much hustle despite his age. He may not be an expert on the issue but he tried to downplay media hysteria and tell us that life goes on with or without diseases. We cannot all live under a glass dome and sing Kumbaya, can we? As the old saying goes – Cleanliness is next to godliness, but dirt is on the other side. Without that our immune system wouldn’t be effective as it is now.

My point is you shouldn’t do as Trump says or does. We live in the 21st century, with plenty of resources to keep us informed. The U.S. is a global powerhouse when it comes to knowledge. Follow the health guidelines of institutions, not one man desperately clinging onto his throne.

How to stay away from coronavirus

Take a quick look at why Japanese wear face masks. This video is from 2009, filmed well before COVID-19 appeared.

Coronavirus leads to a disease called COVID-19. So far, there is no confirmed cure for this disease. Countries worldwide are focused on testing potential vaccines and racing to find the cure, but nobody knows when it will happen. Till then, every individual should act responsibly to stay safe and not to infect others.

It helps to know how the virus spreads.

The coronavirus spreads through the air via droplets and direct contact.

Droplets are spread when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. This can be solved by wearing a face mask, sneezing and coughing correctly, and by social distancing.

Good hand hygiene is another crucial factor in limiting the spread of the disease.

Coughing correctly means exactly what it has always meant — you should cough into a paper tissue, your hand, or elbow to stop the droplets spreading from your throat onto other people. You shouldn’t just turn your head and cough to the other side, because you’re still spreading particles around.

You should wear a face mask that fits well to stop the spread of droplets. Face masks also act as a protective barrier keeping you from touching your face. Keeping your eyes, mouth, and nose clean and safe from contact is important.

Good hand hygiene means washing hands and using a hand sanitizer often.

Note that wearing disposable gloves is not effective and not recommended. You can spread the virus with gloves just as with hands through contact.

people using social distancing
Photo by Mateusz Glogowski on Unsplash

Social distancing, Self-isolation, and Quarantine

Social distancing helps prevent direct contact with infected people. Try not to use public transport, social gatherings, and visits. Avoid shaking hands and hugging.

You should keep a safe distance of at least 1 meter from anyone when outside.

Obviously, you can’t do this at home, so everyone from the same household should act cautiously when outside.

If a member of your family tests positive for COVID-19, they should be isolated at home, and not go outside. Preferably, they should be in their own room and use a separate bathroom.

All members of this family should act responsibly when outside, practice social distancing and wear face masks.

Regular and thorough cleaning is a must. Try doing laundry every day.

Why choose Natural Hygiene products

You should choose homemade natural hygiene products for three important reasons:

1. You should make your own hygiene products to limit going outside for shopping. Every time you go outside you risk getting infected. Shops are dangerous because a lot of people forget about practicing social distancing. There is also a potential for infection through contact.

2. You should make natural hygiene products to limit the intake of chemicals from commercial products. Natural hygiene products can be made with just a few ingredients that are not harmful to your body. Regular cleaning of surfaces is better done with natural homemade detergents. This way, you will not spread, inhale, or surround yourself with unnecessary chemicals.

3. You should learn how to make natural hygiene products in case of shortage. At the very start of the pandemic, we all witnessed empty shelves in stores and fights between customers over toilet paper. Needless to say, they were not socially distanced.

homemade natural face mask
Photo by Vera Davidova on Unsplash

DIY Homemade Face Mask

Just to be clear, according to every scientist, face masks are mandatory. Without a doubt, face masks help contain the disease.

According to a new analysis by Vanderbilt Department of Health Policy researchers, wearing masks reduces mortality by at least twice. Including face masks in anti-covid strategy can have real impact on saving people’s lives.

What type of face masks people are using is another matter. For medical personnel, without a doubt, the only face mask they should be using is the N95 because it provides the best protection.

Before you head on to making your own version of a face mask, take a look at the research on face mask efficacy conducted in September 2020.  It is smart to study what works and what doesn’t.  The research studied 14 different face masks. You can see the pictures of the masks and the results of their efficacy.

According to the research results, bandana and neck gaiters are not efficient face masks.

In case you run out of surgical masks, science says you can opt for a homemade cotton face mask with no worries.

Everybody can make their own face mask. It is easy, cheap, eco-friendly (you can use an old T-shirt), creative, and recommended by the

Instructions:

CDC gave a clear guide on how to make non-sewn masks. A clear tutorial with pictures takes you step-by-step through the process. This is an easy family project you can do with your kids and teach them about the importance of wearing face masks.

DIY Handmade Face Masks

Face masks are made out of two pieces of cloth sewn together, and some elastic band for ear loops.

For the outer part of the face mask, use a polyester fabric, and for the inside part (worn close to your face) use 100% cotton.

It is recommended to put a filter between two cloths. Therefore, when you are making the mask, leave the side opening for inserting the filter.

The best type of filter is the HEPA filter (vacuum cleaner bag). You can also use coffee filters, or simply add another layer of cloth material.

Since I am not too enthusiastic about sewing, I glued my face mask together with special fabric glue.

For those of you who are up to the sewing challenge, or just eager to showcase your skills, you can watch this short tutorial:

You should wash your face mask daily to keep it clean and effective. You can even put it in the washing machine.

NATURAL HYGIENE PRODUCTS: Homemade Natural Hand Sanitizer

 “Save lives. Clean hands.”

World Health Organization (WHO)

Cleaning hands with a hand sanitizer shouldn’t be your only method for cleaning hands. You should use hand sanitizer as a last resort when there are no other methods available. You should always use soap and water as soon as you can and often.

Remember to wash hands or use hand sanitizer every time before putting on your face mask and after you take it off. Whenever you come in contact with other people and surfaces they touch, you should use wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.

WHO recommends using an alcohol-based hand rub. WHO published a recipe for homemade hand sanitizer that you can produce locally as an alternative to commercial products.

Note that the quantities WHO recommends are for a large batch. Since their recipe calls for hydrogen peroxide it can be harsher on softer hands. You can find detailed instructions with photos online.

According to the CDC’s hand-sanitizer fact-sheet, hand sanitizers should contain at least 60% alcohol.

You should learn how to make your own natural hand sanitizer because it is easy to do. You will have a constant supply and it is cheap. To purchase the ingredients go to your local Walmart or Target. They always have them available.

wash your hands image
Wash your hands. Image created by Rok Mar. Submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives – help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Homemade Natural Hygiene Products: Hand Sanitizer Recipe

90 % isopropyl alcohol or ethanol

Aloe vera gel

Essential oil (cinnamon, tea tree, lavender, eucalyptus, or peppermint)

It is interesting to mention that cinnamon essential oil has the most effective microbial activity. This was proven by an Egyptian scientific study of 9 essential oils conducted in 2014.

Before you start, clean your hands, surfaces, bowl, and whisk thoroughly.  Prepare the sanitizer container in advance.

Mix well the following ingredients with a whisk:

2 parts of alcohol with 1 part of aloe vera gel (for example 1 cup of alcohol: ½ cup of aloe vera gel)

Add a few drops (up to 10) of antibacterial essential oil of your choice.

Put the gel into a container, label it, and use it often.

You should rub your hands for 20 seconds. This goes for washing hands with soap and water.

Beware! Alcohol-based hand sanitizer is highly flammable.  You should keep it away from flames and heat.

Once you’ve successfully made a batch of your personalized hand sanitizer, you can use it in other recipes, like sanitizing wipes.

Natural Hygiene Products: Homemade Sanitizing Wipes

Plastic container

Disposable paper towels

Hand sanitizer

Put the paper towels into the container. You can precut them into smaller pieces. Pour the premade hand sanitizer over the paper towels. Close the lid to prevent drying out. If they dry out, you can pour more hand sanitizer on top.

homemade natural cleaners
Photo by Crema Joe on Unsplash

Homemade Natural HYGIENE PRODUCTS: Cleaners

Home cleaning can be efficiently done with homemade natural cleaners.

Natural Window Cleaner Recipe

5 cups distilled water

1 cup white vinegar

1 cup of alcohol

Essential oil

Mix all the ingredients, add essential oil of your choice, and put in a spray bottle. This cleaner can be used to clean surfaces as well.

Natural Electronics Cleaner Recipe

Prepare a clean spray bottle.

Pour in the following ingredients:

¼ cup 70 % alcohol

¼ cup distilled water

When you need to clean your TV or iPhone, spray the mixture over a cloth first, and then wipe your electronic device.

Homemade Natural Cleaner for Wooden Floors

2 cups of white vinegar

1 bucket of hot water

3 drops of lemon essential oil

Fill a large bucket with hot water. Add 2 cups of white vinegar and essential oil.  Use a damp cloth to wash the floors.

Homemade Natural Detergent

Laundry detergent recipe

Replace one half of your usual laundry detergent with the same amount of baking soda. This way, your clothes will feel even fresher and stay that way longer.

If you start using white vinegar instead of your usual fabric softener, you will love the difference and never go back again. Vinegar not only softens the clothes but it also enhances the cleaning effect of the laundry detergent. I only use natural hygiene products.

Dishwasher liquid recipe

The recipe is very simple, yet as effective as store-bought counterparts.

You can easily make this natural hygiene product at home using very basic ingredients. You will get a liquid detergent that you pour into a compartment where tablets normally go.

Do the following:

Cut 3 lemons into wedges. Put them into a pot, and cover with water. Bring to boil and then let them simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the pot from heat, add 2 cups of water and blend well with a hand held blender. Strain the mixture.

Add 1 cup of salt and ½ cup of white vinegar. Again, bring to boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Let the mixture cool down before you pour it into a container. It is not a solid detergent, more like a mush.

When you use the liquid, just pour it into the dishwasher tablet container.

Dishwasher powder recipe

If you are more comfortable putting powder than liquid detergent into the dishwasher machine, use this simple recipe.

Stir the following ingredients in a large bowl:

2 cups baking soda

2 cups super washing soda

2 cups citric acid

1 cup coarse kosher salt

Stir all the ingredients well and keep in a closed container. Use 1 tbsp of the homemade powder to replace 1 dishwashing tablet. You will surely use only natural hygiene products from now on.

use air refresheners
Photo by Mateusz Glogowski on Unsplash

Homemade Natural air fresheners

1 cup of alcohol

1 cup distilled water

10 drops of lemon essential oil

10 drops of orange essential oil

Put the ingredients into a spray bottle and shake before use.

Importance of Home Humidity

Recent research published in 2019 conducted at Yale University, concluded that our immune system fights respiratory infections better at high humidity.  In winter, we start heating our homes and what usually follows is lower humidity.

This study explains why we are more susceptible to flu and other respiratory viruses during winter. Colder temperatures and lower humidity are the recipe for seasonal flu and influenza, according to Yale scientists.

 It is with good reason some people are afraid of winter months and fear of getting sick more easily.

What’s the cure? Actually, it’s quite simple. You should keep the humidity level in your home above 50%. You can achieve that in a completely natural way, without buying expensive (and noisy) gadgets.

Homemade Natural Humidifier

Flower Vases as natural humidifiers

As long as I can remember, my mother had lots of flower pots on window sills, just above the hot radiators. I always thought she was a natural gardener and never questioned her positioning tactics. Sure, all flowers need the sun and thrive when are close to the window.

Old-school (non-electric) radiators are perfect for placing plants. But if you don’t have a flat surface, you can put the flowers next to your heating source. The effect is the same. You should place flower pots in every room and water them regularly.

Additionally, flower vases filled with water keep the house humid and help you stay healthy in cold, winter months. If you are not keen on gardening, store-bought flowers in a vase will do. It’s water that counts.

Boiling Water

A simple solution to hydrating your home is putting a large pot of water on the stove, boil it and let it simmer without a lid on. The water will evaporate into the air. Make sure you keep an eye on the pot and take it off the stove before the water fully evaporates.

Every time you make tea, coffee or cook spaghetti, put a lot of water in the pot, more than you need. When you are done cooking, leave the boiling water in the pot, and don’t throw it away as usual. The steam will humidify the air naturally. When the water cools down, you can throw it away.

natural humidifier - drying rack
Photo by Bogdan Shcheglovitov on Unsplash

Drying Rack

Nobody does laundry the old-fashioned way anymore. We all use machines to do our dirty work. Literally.

You can solve the low humidity issue by skipping on the dryer, at least. Simply put your wet clothes over a drying rack and let them dry naturally. This way, if you spread the clothes nicely, you can skip on ironing, too.

There are more advantages to this method than first meets the eye. You save energy, time, and money, all while you’re humidifying your home naturally.

I guess the word skip can have a positive meaning.

Conclusion

We should all bring our A-game when our adversary is The Invisible Coronavirus.

We could all do more. We should.

COVID-19 is happening everywhere, globally. It’s not some obscure virus happening in a village in Africa that you can afford to forget about.

We can’t let authorities deal with it alone, especially when authorities act negligently like US President Donald Trump.

Not following the basic health guidelines will get you in the hospital. But, unlike Trump, you will not get first-class medical help.

You should take safety precautions seriously. People wearing face masks and using hand sanitizers shouldn’t be an exception, but a rule.

Now that you have the recipes for homemade natural hygiene products, please use them.

Don’t be lazy to make your own. You can’t afford to forget to use them.

We can say that we finally beat the COVID-19 when there are no more cases in the world. Everyone, Trump included, should act responsibly to bring us to that goal faster.

stay safe image
Keep Each Other Safe. Inspired by life in South East Asia and how we can all help each other be a little safer. Image created by Asa Gilland. Submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives – help stop the spread of COVID-19.

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