If you’ve been following my blog for a while, then you’ve probably already noticed that many of the same ingredients pop up again and again in my homemade cleaning solutions. These superstar cleaning ingredients include things like baking soda, vinegar, and essential oils, just to name a few. But the two cleaning ingredients we’ll be talking about today seem to be among the more mysterious: hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol.
I have received a lot of questions about these two substances over the years. So to help clear up the confusion and get us all on the same page, I thought it was high time that I wrote a blog post about it! Today I’ll be covering everything you’ve been wondering about hydrogen peroxide vs. rubbing alcohol, including what they are, how they are different, what uses each one is best suited for, and more.
And if you’re interested in learning about more about hydrogen peroxide specifically, be sure to check out my eBook Hydrogen Peroxide Magic! You can buy it in my shop, or download it for free if you’re an OGT Plus member!
Hydrogen Peroxide vs Rubbing Alcohol: The Basics
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a chemical compound made up of two hydrogen molecules and two oxygen molecules. It is a naturally occurring substance produced in small amounts in the bodies of many animals, including humans. It has antibacterial, bleaching, lightening properties.
Rubbing alcohol, also referred to as isopropyl alcohol, is a different chemical compound entirely (C3H8O, for the curious!) It is a highly effective solvent, and dissolves a wide range of compounds including oils. It has antibacterial qualities and evaporates quickly.
Both hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol…
- Are antiseptics
- Are naturally occurring
- Can be found in the pharmacy section of most grocery stores
- Can be used for household cleaning
Should I Use Hydrogen Peroxide Or Rubbing Alcohol For Cleaning Wounds?
Actually, you’re better off not using either! While both substances have antiseptic qualities, neither is a perfect solution for treating wounds. In the past, doctors commonly recommended using hydrogen peroxide to clean wounds. But today, most medical professionals advise against it because peroxide tends to attack healthy cells as well as bacteria. This can slow down the healing process, so it’s better to avoid it.
Rubbing alcohol is also not advisable to use for cleaning wounds. While it can take care of bacteria, it is almost certain to burn your skin as well. The burning effect can lead to swelling, itching, and inflammation that can make the situation even worse!
So if you have a wound that needs cleaning, keep your bottles of hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol in the cupboard! Instead, rinse the wound with cool water and wash around the area with a mild soap. Cover the wound with a bandage and a thin layer of antibiotic ointment.
How Should I Use Hydrogen Peroxide And Rubbing Alcohol?
While they aren’t great for cleaning cuts, you can use hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol to clean all sorts of other things! They are two of my very favorite cleaning ingredients, and there’s no shortage of ways you can use them around the house.
Rubbing alcohol makes a great solvent and evaporates quickly. That makes it a great choice for powering through greasy and sticky messes! It’s also useful in situations where you don’t want to leave any streaky residues behind, like when you’re cleaning shiny appliances, windows, or mirrors. Check out the links below for more uses for rubbing alcohol:
Hydrogen peroxide disinfects, deodorizes, and can also whiten things. It’s great for washing fruits and veggies, sanitizing sponges, and even removing laundry stains! Check out some of my favorite uses for hydrogen peroxide at the links below:
- 7 Ways Hydrogen Peroxide Will Help You Look Your Best
- 35+ Uses For Hydrogen Peroxide You’ll Want To Know About
Make Your Own Cleaning Products With Hydrogen Peroxide And Rubbing Alcohol
I mentioned at the beginning of this post that I’ve posted a lot of cleaning recipes with both of these ingredients. And I wasn’t kidding, as you’re about to see! Here are links to some of my favorite homemade cleaning products featuring these ingredients:
Hydrogen Peroxide Cleaners
- Kitchen & Bathroom “Miracle” Cleaner
- Homemade Oxygen Bleach
- Daily Shower Cleaner
- My Ultimate Stain Remover Spray
Rubbing Alcohol Cleaners
What’s your favorite way to use hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol at home?