Easy DIY Firestarter – How To Start a Fire With Hand Sanitizer

To start a fire with hand sanitizer, take a cotton ball, fluff it up then douse it up with your hand sanitizer. Light it up to produce a nice blue flame that is smokeless.

Alcohol-based hand sanitizer liquid solutions, the vast majority of which contain isopropyl alcohol, are flammable. The following instructions will show you how to ignite a fire with hand sanitizer.


How to use hand sanitizer as a fire starter

You can use hand sanitizer as a fire starter by just pouring it on a surface and igniting it. As much as it is possible, it is best to use it with combinations like cotton balls to get the best flame possible.

Hand sanitizer typically contains 60% alcohol, which is more than enough to catch fire if ignited. Hand sanitizer is likely to be effective on your kindling.

Here are some of the most common ways to use hand sanitizer as a fire starter:

Using a cotton ball

Step 1:

Take a cotton ball and fluff it up. This is to ensure that you increase the surface area of the cotton ball to create a good base for the fire.

Step 2:

Douse the cotton ball with your hand sanitizer. Make sure that the tip of the hand sanitizer bottle does not come into contact with the cotton.

Also, make sure that the hand sanitizer does not spill out of range of the cotton ball. Hand sanitizers have an almost invisible flame because of the ethanol in them, so to avoid any fire hazards, ensure that there is no spillage.

Step 3:

Use your lighter to light the combination. You will notice that the flame produced will be a nice, long-lasting blue flame that has no smoke.

Remember to wash your hands before igniting the cotton ball to avoid any fire injuries.

Using lint and cardboard tubes from toilet paper

Step 1:

After doing many loads of laundry, collect the dryer lint. Once you’ve gathered enough of it, start stuffing it into the cardboard tubes.

Step 2:

Pour hand sanitizer on the dry lint inside the cardboard tube. The cardboard tube will prevent the hand sanitizer from leaking out.

Step 3:

Roll out a sheet of wax paper about 4-5 inches wider than your tube. Wrap the tube securely in wax paper and twist the ends together like a wrapped candy.

Wrapping it in wax paper provides two functions. First, the twisted ends work as a wick, making it simple to light. Second, the wax paper prevents lint from flaking out and making a mess.

Step 4:

Using a lighter, ignite the tip of the wax paper.

This is the safest way to start a fire with hand sanitizer since the fire burns in a controlled environment.

Using aluminum foil

You’ll need heavy-duty aluminum foil for this. A lighter, a small aluminum pan, hand sanitizer, and a knife or scissors are also recommended.

Step 1:

Fill the aluminum pan with hand sanitizer. The hand sanitizer should reach about halfway up the aluminum pan.

Step 2:

Seal the edges of the metal pan with foil. Wrapping the edges of the metal pan in foil will prevent leaks.

Step 3:

Punch holes in your aluminum foil. Use either a knife or scissors to create your holes.

Step 4:

Take out a lighter and ignite it.

You can get a few hours of a burning flame. Ensure that you make different-sized holes to get varied sizes of fire.

Hand sanitizer is decent as a fire starter but fire starter cubes are way easier.

See related: Best Portable Fire Pans For Camping, Hiking & Backpacking

Can I use isopropyl alcohol as a fire starter?

Yes, you can use isopropyl alcohol as a fire starter since it is 100% alcohol. It can either burn on its own when it is misted or when it is applied to a fabric.

Because it is an alcohol, it is extremely combustible when exposed to high temperatures, sparks, or burning candles.

Protective clothing, such as safety gloves and goggles, should always be used when working with isopropyl alcohol to minimize the risk of coming into contact with one’s skin. This will help ensure that no skin irritation occurs.

If you wish to maximize the effectiveness of isopropyl alcohol as a fire starter, combine it with paraffin wax.

The alcohol allows it to burn extremely hot, while the paraffin wax increases the burn time and delivers a significant amount of additional BTU. This blend also burns almost smokeless, making it ideal for use in indoor fireplaces.

See related: How to Start a Fire with Household Items

Bottom Line

In your bug-out bag, you should have as many ways to start a fire as feasible. A lighter, matches and a magnesium flint striker should already be in your possession.

However, this is insufficient. Cotton balls, ready-made kindling, and hand sanitizer should also be included. The hand sanitizer is effective due to its high alcohol content. It can also be used to ignite a fire in the rain.

Applying hand sanitizer on cotton balls or prefabricated kindling is one of the most effective ways to start a fire. When it comes into contact with a spark, it will ignite.