Ah, sweet memories of those late March and early April days, when toilet paper, Lysol wipes and hand sanitizer altogether disappeared from the shelves. The panic was real, and the bar was low: we'd take whatever random bottle we could find. (And that random bottle, found on a dusty corner of a local convenience store, was very likely to have been banned by Health Canada.)
Here are a few of our favourite pandemic-worthy local hand sanitizers, field tested and approved by our editors's hands.
Odd Society's Topical Hand Sanitizer
Now that we're 20 years...er, 7 months into the pandemic (or is it 8?), I'm a little pickier about how I stay healthy when I actually leave my apartment. I picked up Odd Society's Topical Hand Sanitizer at a Farmers Market in the summer (and recently re-upped at another one this weekend), but London Drugs stocks it too. (And of course, you can head to the distillery itself, and grab some of their Wallflower gin at the same time—win-win.). It doesn't not smell like gin, but in a pleasant, citrus-forward gin-and-tonic kind of way—less like you've tied one on. $4 for 90 ml, oddsocietyspirits.com —Anicka Quin, editorial director
AG Hands Free Hand Sanitizer Spray
Trial and error also has me realizing I way prefer a spray/liquid hand sanitizer to a gel, which often can leave my hands feeling sticky and well, dirtier than they were before the santizer came into play. AG Hair pivoted early in the pandemic to convert their Coquitlam-based factory into sanitizer production for both frontline workers and the general public, and I've become a big fan of their Hands Free line. The spray is fresh-scented, a little citrusy too, and my hands are left feeling both clean and moisturized. Plus, it's vegan. $12.99 for 148 ml, aghair.com —Anicka Quin, editorial director
Healing Bees' Hand Sanitizer Spray
I really admire the makers (Mixologists? Magicians?) who craft this Burnaby-made sanitizer. It's a tough thing to create a recipe that smells good, but not suspiciously good. Corporate giants may have nailed a hand sanitizer that smells like candied apples or pina coladas or new cars, but in times like this, you want a spritz that smells a little boozey. Healing Bees' formula is made by beekeepers using natural ingredients and isopropyl alcohol. It's got a subtle citrus scent, but it still stings, so I'm buzzing about it (I'll bee here all week). $8.90 for 250 ml, healingbees.ca—Alyssa Hirose, assistant editor