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7 alternative sanitising methods to protect yourself from coronavirus

By Ching Yuen 7 February 2020

Though exact numbers may vary, our hands actually carry more bacteria than the average toilet seat! There are a lot of items we use in our everyday lives that carry an astonishing amount of bacteria, both the good and bad kinds.

Just off the top of our head, we know that door handles, light switches, and keyboards are some of the bacteria’s favourite hideouts. And with the alarming spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), it’s time to take matters into our own hands!

As shops and pharmacies across the city have had their stocks of bleach, rubbing alcohol, and Dettol swiped off the shelves, we have come up with a few alternative sanitising methods that are effective and comparatively better for the environment, too—scroll down to check them out.

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Raze Technology

Three keywords you need to know about this product: self-sanitising coating. That’s right, Raze’s breakthrough photocatalyst technology uses light to break down indoor pollutants, rendering them obsolete. Their photocatalyst nanoparticles come in a clear spray bottle, and after ‘charging’ it on their UV panel, the mixture will turn bright blue.

With their Original Spray ($150), you can mist the concoction onto any surface to create a durable, self-sanitising layer. The photocatalysts react to any form of light, releasing electrons and forming reactive oxygen. The reactive oxygen then binds to bacteria, viruses, odours, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), safely decomposing them into harmless water and carbon dioxide molecules.

Raze activates with any kind of light and can work for up to eight hours without it, and the coating can last up to three months!

Phonesoap Smartphone Sanitiser

Here’s a post-Halloween horror story: did you know your phone is eighteen times dirtier than a toilet? A toilet! We shall have none of that, thank you very much. The coronavirus is reportedly spread through respiratory droplets that hang onto surfaces, and how long those droplets last depend both on the droplet and the surface—mucus or saliva, porous or non-porous, for example. If it finds a home on your heavily-used phone screen, then touching that infected surface is definitely a big no-no.

Phonesoap has a Smartphone Sanitiser ($762) that does away with all of this grime, using a safe UV light to kill 99.99 percent of all bacteria and germs on your phone. It can clean phones of just about any size, and you can even clean other things—like your keys, credit cards, and more—as long as it fits inside the case. In addition, the unit offers one USB port and one USB-C port for charging. We are so ordering one for the office!

Nasalguard

90 percent of the contaminated air you breathe is inhaled through your nose and then enters your respiratory system, where it can cause serious health issues. Indoor air is five times more polluted than outdoor air, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, but there is a quick solution to protect yourself a bit more.

Simply squeeze one or two pin-sized drops of Nasalguard ($161) on your finger, and apply the gel directly around the nostrils and above the upper lip. It uses electrostatic technology to create an invisible filter around the outside of the nasal passages, reducing the inhalation of virus-sized particles, pollen, pet dander, and pollution. One tube can last up to 150 applicants, with every application lasting up to six hours!

More stories on home gadgets:

DIY hand sanitisers and surface cleaners

Young Living Thieves Oil

Thieves Oil

Global essential oils company Young Living created the Thieves Oil blend, a powerful combination of clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus radiata, and rosemary essential oils that fills any space with a rich, spicy aroma and strong sanitising properties. Here is a simple recipe to create your hand own sanitiser that will last up to three months:

  • 1/3 cups of pure witch hazel
  • 2/3 cups of pure aloe vera gel
  • 15 drops of Thieves Oil
  • 1 sachet of Vitamin E oil (optional)

In a glass bowl, add pure witch hazel and pure aloe vera gel and stir. Add Thieves Oil and mix well, then add in Vitamin E oil. After it is evenly mixed, pour the mixture into your container of choice.

If you can’t get your hands on Thieves Oil, you can also make your own formula of it:

  • 10 drops of cinnamon oil
  • 9 drops of lemon oil
  • 5 drops of cinnamon oil
  • 4 drops of eucalyptus oil
  • 3 drops of rosemary

Witch hazel

Witch hazel is a type of plant known for its astringent properties, which includes killing bacteria that can live within the skin’s pores. It can also dilute the essential oils in mixtures, so it’s a great choice for your hand sanitiser and it can last up to three months. Here’s a recipe to follow:

  • 1 cup of aloe vera gel
  • 2 tbsp witch hazel
  • 30 drops of tea tree oil
  • 1/2 tsp Vitamin E oil (optional)
  • 5–10 drops of essential oil (rosemary, lavender, and cinnamon are great)

In a glass bowl, add the essential oils and Vitamin E oil and stir. Afterwards, add the witch hazel and stir again. Add the aloe vera gel and mix very well. Finally, pour the mixture into your container of choice. We’d recommend a squeezy bottle. Remember to shake well before using.

Vinegar

The acidic properties of vinegar will fight against bacteria and whatever else that doesn’t belong. It is a relatively potent surface cleaner, but remember to refrain from using it on marble and granite surfaces since the acid might ruin them. Here’s a recipe to follow:

  • 1 1/4 cup of distilled water
  • 1/4 cup of white distilled vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of vodka
  • 15 drops lavender or peppermint essential oil

Simply pour all of the ingredients into a 16-ounce spray bottle and gently shake the cleaning mixture before you use it.

Lemon

Lemons also contain antibacterial properties due to its acidic properties and can fight germs and bacteria that are not welcome in the household. Naturally, its citrusy scent is also a great addition to the household. Just remember not to mix it with bleach and stay away from marble surfaces! Here’s a recipe to follow:

  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 cup of distilled white vinegar
  • 1 cup of water

Juice the lemon and lime. Strain the juice through a natural cloth or unbleached coffee filter into a measuring cup to remove all the pulp. Add the lemon juice, lime juice, vinegar, and water to a spray bottle and shake well before use.

Now, friends, go forth and stay clean and sanitised! Remember to wash your hands often and thoroughly and take care to minimise contact with unsanitised surfaces. And just for the record, a healthy disclaimer: We are not medical professionals. Should you be experiencing severe symptoms of any kind, it is advised to seek professional medical help.

Having lived in Hong Kong, Beijing, and London sure is a fun fact whenever people try to guess Ching’s accent. She loves switching between all these language channels and her ‘mother tongue’ is just determined by how many drinks she’s had for the night! She loves movies, travelling, and exploring cities, from hidden alleys to gourmet dining, so feel free to hit her up if you need any suggestions for dinner!

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