FAQ’s

The U.S. Center for Disease Control states that the number one way to prevent the spread of germs is by hand washing.  Unfortunately, that is not always convenient.  This product does not replace hand washing; it is a supplement. ulta-derm™ Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer moisturizes skin whilst instantly killing germs, thereby helping to prevent the spread of disease.  It is also cost effective, providing more than three times the number of applications of comparably sized alcohol gels.

Why is alcohol free significant?

Research findings from different studies show that alcohol-based hand sanitizers actually increase the number of bacteria on the skin the more they are used.  Alcohol is a solvent that strips away oils that are important for water retention, and dries out the skin when it evaporates.  This drying effect causes chapping and cracking of the skin, creating cracks and crevices where germs may become trapped or hidden.  Even if an alcohol-based hand sanitizer has emollients, repeated use will leave the skin dry, irritated, and more susceptible to invasion by germs.  In addition, alcohol-based products are extremely flammable, which is highly undesirable, particularly in a school setting.  Since ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is water based, it won’t burn those small, unseen cuts or abrasions so common with school-age children. ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is highly effective while being very gentle on the skin.

What is the active ingredient in ulta-derm a Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer?  Why is that so unique?

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer contains the active ingredient Benzalkonium chloride (BAC).  This ingredient on its own has been used for over 60 years in medical sanitation, and is approved for safety and effectiveness in antiseptic applications ranging from skin treatments for minor irritations (e.g. Bactine®) to surface sanitizers (e.g. Lysol®).  It has been approved by the FDA, in terms of safety, for use as an active ingredient in the oral cavity.

By itself, however, BAC is deactivated by certain organic materials (e.g. protein, dirt) and by hard water.  In ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer, there is the unique BASE Technology™ (BASE = Benzalkonium Chloride + Aloe Vera + Surfactants + Emollients) employed so that the germ-killing activity of BAC is enhanced and effective in killing both gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria, as well as fungi, yeast, molds and certain viruses.  No other hand sanitizer contains the BASE Technology as found in ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer.

Do other companies manufacture a BAC based Sanitizer?

Yes. The active BAC is used by other companies with limited success due to the properties denaturing (neutralizing) the active. ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer uses a new preservative system that was only introduced in the last 2 years and ensures the availability of the antimicrobial activity of BAC.

The activity of ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer was challenged by one of our distributors who conducted their own laboratory kill time tests. The results of the test on ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer exceeded the claims and kill time of our current documentation. One reason the results exceeded our current claims is that EcoHydra bases the claims on existing published data. The current data compiled from published studies, FDA, manufacturers and other sources on Benzalkonium Chloride do not reflect the advances that EcoHydra has made in this new formulation.

Recently, there have been companies that combine alcohol with BAC to ensure that the product has antimicrobial activity. These products do not have the benefits of an alcohol-free formula that ensures the integrity of the skin.

Does ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer work better with repeated use?  Why?

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer  performance improves with repeated use!  It is more effective the more it is used to a level exceeding FDA standards (AORN, August 1998).  This unique formulation does not contain alcohol, and will not dry the skin.  The germ-killing action of ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is persistent.    

Why do you say that using ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer will lower the rate of illness absenteeism in schools, businesses and medical institutions?

A double-blind study was completed, which studied the effectiveness of an alcohol-free instant hand sanitizer at reducing illness-related absenteeism during the height of a formal cold and flu season in several elementary schools in Southern California.  The results of the test indicated that the overall illness was reduced by 33% compared to the control group (use of the placebo instant hand sanitizer).  The results from this study show that ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is very effective at reducing costly absences due to gastrointestinal or respiratory illnesses.

If I can still smell the alcohol-gel hand sanitizer, is it working?

Once an alcohol-based sanitizer has evaporated, its killing power is gone.  Some brands of alcohol-based sanitizers add heavy fragrance to the formulas to try to give a sense of security to the consumer…(“as long as I can smell it, it must still be working”)…however, as soon as the sanitizer is dry, it is no longer effective at killing germs.  However, ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer has a documented persistence of activity with repeated use.

Can ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer be used for general hand hygiene protocol for hospital personnel?

Yes. ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer Instant Hand Sanitizer meets the performance standards set by the FDA in the 21CFR 333.470: Effectiveness testing of a healthcare personnel handwash.  This protocol requires that those products:

  • Be fast acting,
  • Kill a broad spectrum of microbes,
  • Work under a heavy soil load, and
  • Demonstrate a persistence of action.

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer  was designed with the clinical environment in mind; however, it is gentle enough for daily use on the sensitive skin of children.  Therefore, it has applications in all businesses, medical clinics, food preparation services, and schools.

Why doesn’t ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer attack human cells as they do bacteria, yeast and fungus?

The answer is species-specific toxicity.  Although the BASE Technology antimicrobial system found in ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is effective on a wide spectrum of microorganisms, it has no detectable toxic effect on human skin in vivo.  This is due to the proprietary BASE Technology system, which contains surfactants, Aloe Vera and Benzalkonium Chloride.  These elements, when mixed together in the correct fashion at levels that enhance the natural water-retaining barrier function of the skin, focus the activity of the active ingredient, BAC, on the microorganisms which have worked their way into the skin, and which lie between dead skin cells.  In addition, Aloe Vera preferentially protects living mammalian cells from the action of the BAC.

We have experienced a softening of the skin with repeated use of ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer.  Why does this occur?

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is formulated to be highly compatible with the skin.  It does not break down the skin’s natural water barrier, as do alcohol-containing products, but instead complements that barrier.  In addition to this, the Aloe Vera in ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is a natural emollient and skin softener that helps the skin stay healthy especially with repeated use.

Alcohol-gel instant hand sanitizers have emollients.  Do these work as well as ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer in keeping the skin clean and soft?

When an alcohol sanitizer evaporates, it leaves behind the non-evaporable parts of the formula.  Repeated use of alcohol based hand sanitizers leaves the skin dry and actually more susceptible to infiltration by disease-causing microorganisms.  Some manufacturers of alcohol sanitizers have added emollients to these preparations to try and cut down on the drying effect of the alcohol.  However, these emollients, when over-used, remain on the skin and become sticky after the alcohol portion of the product has evaporated.  This leftover sticky emollient is unpleasant to feel, and can be transferred to food.  Furthermore, because it is sticky, it can act as a “germ magnet” and actually pick up germs from surrounding surfaces.  A better solution for disinfecting is the BASE Technology antimicrobial system found in ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer that leaves the skin clean and soft with repeated use.

What are the Antiseptic Methods Used to Control Infection?

  • Sterilization
  • Disinfectants and
  • Antiseptics

The control of infection is accomplished through sterilization and the use of disinfectants and antiseptics.  Sterilization kills all life forms by heat, chemical agents, or gas.  The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines agents that destroy all forms of microbial life while they are in contact with a surface as sporicides.  According to the EPA, Disinfectants also kill microbes but they are not quite as strong.  To qualify with the EPA as a hospital disinfectant, an agent must be lethal to Salmonella Cholereasius, Staphylococcus Aureus, and Pseudomonas Aeruginosa.  Disinfectants and sporicides are used on inanimate objects, such as floors, equipment, and sinks.  They are usually quite harsh and are not used on living tissue.  Skin Antiseptics are used to kill or inhibit the growth of microorganisms on the skin. 

Will using conventional soap and water affect the performance of ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer?

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is positively charged (cationic), but conventional soaps are negatively charged (anionic).  Mixing these two types of formulas together at the same time at a sink, for example, will decrease the effectiveness of both formulas.  However, the researchers accounted for the possibility that the user might wash with a conventional anionic soap before using ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer: the lab’s effectiveness testing actually includes the use of a conventional anionic soap immediately (ca 5-10 minutes) prior to product testing.  The net finding of that research was that even with prior conventional soap use, the antimicrobial system found in ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer outperformed comparable sanitizers. 

Is ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer  supposed to be mixed with water or diluted before use?

No.  ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is formulated not to need dilution with water.  In contrast to other branded hand sanitizers, however, whose active ingredients can fall out of solution with the addition of water, ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is water tolerant.

Does ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer need to be wiped off after use?

No.  ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is meant to be left on the skin until it dries.

Will there be an aftertaste on food after using ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer before eating? 

No.  Under conditions of normal use, (hands dry after use) the product will not leave any noticeable aftertaste on food.  The National Food Safety Database, Section 2-301.16 Hand Sanitizers requires that “an antimicrobial product applied to the hands is both

  • Safe and effective when applied to human skin, and
  • A safe food additive when applied to bare hands that will come into direct contact with food.”

What is the recommended amount of ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer  needed per application?

Understanding that various skin types have different natural moisture content, use enough to cover your hands, usually 0.5-0.75 ml (1-2 pumps). ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer  has less surface tension than many traditional products, and therefore is easily spread on the hands.  This allows less of the product to go farther than standard hand sanitizers.

How does the pricing of Instant Hand Sanitizer compare to branded alcohol-containing hand sanitizers?

Pricing is very competitive with other hand sanitizing solutions currently available, from the perspective of the cost per usage.  The cost per usage is significantly lower than branded alcohol-containing hand sanitizers because ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is a low-viscosity composition.  This allows the product to spread more easily across the hands, reduces the amount required per application and provides more than twice the number of uses.

What regulations and standards do these products conform to? 

ulta-derm Alcohol-free Instant Hand Sanitizer is designed to comply with the performance standards published by the FDA in the proposed rule for Healthcare Antiseptic Drug Products in 21CFR333.470:  Effectiveness testing of Healthcare Personnel Handwashes.  In addition, the product meets the performance standards set by the USDA (i.e. germ- killing power is greater than 50 ppm chlorine) and the FDA Glove Juice Test protocol.

Is ulta-derm Foam Hand Sanitiser effective against Norovirus?

Noroviruses are a group of viruses that are themost common cause of viral gastroenteritis (a gutinfection causing vomiting and diarrhoea), affecting people of all ages. The viruses are highly contagious and are transmitted by fecally contaminated food or water, by person-to-person contact, and via contact with contaminated surfaces. Study after study has shown that none of these is as effective against the spread of Norovirus as washing your hands with soap and water. Alcohol-based gels or wipes do not kill Norovirus. Anything marked “antibacterial” but not “antiviral” may not necessarily kill viruses of any kind. The ingredients benzalkonium chloride and benzethonium chloride are effective against Norovirus in concentrations of at least .01%.