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While many panicked Americans are stocking up on Purell to protect themselves from COVID-19, others are seeking a solution that better fits with their wellness ideals. Enter Touchland, a holistic and all-natural take on hand sanitizer made with ingredients designed to smell and feel good. We explore the insights behind this and how people are maintaining their self-care in a time of crisis.

An array of alternatives to Purell hand sanitizer have emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic. From Aesop to Byredo and Dr. Bronner, many of these products take their inspiration from beauty and skincare, offering a more wellness-focused solution than the standard pharmacy brands. With the slogan 'Clean Made Cool', US-based Touchland is one of the brands that's repositioning hand sanitizer as a pleasant and core part of self-care routines.

Sales of Touchland have surged over 900%, with customers seeing it as a welcome alternative to Purel
@Touchland | Instagram (2020) ©

Though it launched in 2018, Touchland has experienced a surge of interest due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Since the outbreak began, its sales have surged over 900%, with customers seeing it as a welcome antidote to Purell’s medicinal smell and unpleasant stickiness. Made from a blend of aloe vera, essential oils, and 67% ethyl alcohol, the sanitizing product is also cruelty-free and vegan. From its design to its social media presence and the solution itself, the brand offers a germ-fighting solution that aligns with many people’s idea of beauty, wellness, and self-care. “There was room for a brand to build solutions to not only meet the functional needs of a sanitizing product, but to also take care of the skin,” says founder Andrea Lisbona.

COVID-19 fears have resulted in an outbreak of bulk-buying as people look to take more control of the situation. While toilet paper and Purell are some of the most common buys, people are also snapping up niche products like Touchland that align with their lifestyle and preferences. This desire to keep COVID-19 from disrupting everyday life also explains why the demand for oat milk has skyrocketed. Indeed, reports suggest that it’s outselling hand sanitizer. With prepping behaviors becoming the norm and sanitizing becoming an everyday activity, products like Touchland could become a core part of self-care – and there are opportunities to reposition them as such.

Ope Oduwole is a junior behavioral analyst at Canvas8. He has a BA from the University of Nottingham and leans on the inquisitive nature of his studies. With an avid interest in all things creative, if he’s not at a concert or poetry reading, he’s buried inside a book with a cup of green tea.


24 Mar 20
2 min read

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