State senator warns consumers from buying homemade hand sanitizers

Senator Kevin Thomas

March 13, 2020

Originally published in News 12 on March 13, 2020.

State Sen. Kevin Thomas, who is the chair of the Consumer Protection Committee, is warning Long Island residents about homemade sanitizing products or items that claims to protect you from getting COVID-19.

State Sen. Kevin Thomas, who is the chair of the Consumer Protection Committee, is warning Long Island residents about homemade sanitizing products or items that claims to protect you from getting COVID-19.

Local officials are giving a clear message for those seeing handmade cleaning supplies online: buyers beware.

Hand sanitizer and other cleaning supplies are hard to find recently, so some have turned online to find what they need, include some handmade products.

State Sen. Kevin Thomas, who is the chair of the Consumer Protection Committee, is warning Long Island residents about homemade sanitizing products or items that claims to protect you from getting COVID-19.

Thomas says entrepreneurs are selling things like handmade hand sanitizer on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. He and other experts says handmade products can be caustic to your skin or are just ineffective.

"Some of these products give a false sense of security, and it's downright dangerous. Items on the Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist are not regulated and the consumer has no way of knowing what might be contained in a product like homemade hand sanitizer," says Thomas.

Thomas says only purchase brand-name products that have been tested by governmental agency. He also adds that simple soap and water hand washing works just as well as alcohol-based sanitizers.

Facebook has said it is trying to eliminate dubious products, but Thomas wants more action.

"We have been on the phone with Facebook lobbyists about all of this, on how to screen all of this and take them down," he says.