What is Hypochlorous Acid and Why is it All the Rage?

Crazy fact of the day:  Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) has been around at least as long as mammals have been on this earth.  For real.  HOCl is made by white blood cells in all mammals for healing and protection.

The first chemical discovery of hypochlorous acid (HOCl) was over 150 years ago.  The modern application of the solution using saltwater and electricity was first developed in the 1970s.  There are a few different ways to create HOCl and one of the “greenest” methods is splitting the salt (NaCl) molecule and the water (H2O) molecule and recombining the elements into HOCl and its byproduct, Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH) through the process of electrolysis.  HOCl @ 500ppm is a hospital-grade disinfectant and NaOH is used as a cleaner/degreaser (12 pH).

So why is it all the rage these days?  Because at 500ppm Free Available Chlorine (FAC) and a neutral pH of 6-7, it works.  Very well.  It works to kill pathogens, is safe to use around people and pets, is non-synthetic, and breaks down into water and salt over time so it is great for the environment.  Disinfectants that we have been using for years can work as well (quats, bleach, and others), but they are typically produced at a pH below 5 (acidic) above 12 (basic), which can cause skin irritation and more on animals and humans.

Over the last 10 years, companies have figured out how to make HOCl in its safest and most stable form and deliver it to consumers.  In addition, a few companies have developed on-site generation equipment so that schools, hospitals, hotels, airports, and others can make it on demand with the use of only water, salt and electricity.

This is all clearly a watered-down explanation of the chemistry of hypochlorous acid.  Our plan is to provide education on these and other topics over the coming weeks and months.  So much to talk about.  How does HOCl really work?  Does it really kill COVID?  How can I get some?

In the meantime, head over to www.annihilare.com to learn more.


Eric Rasmussen, et al. Hypochlorous Acid: Harnessing an Innate Response. 30 Oct. 2019, infectioncontrol.tips/2017/10/06/hypochlorous-innate-response/. 

Michael S. Block, DMD∗∗ and Brian G. Rowan, DMD, MD – Hypochlorous Acid: A Review – Sept 2020 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7315945/

“Hypochlorous Acid.” USDA, 13 Aug. 2015, www.ams.usda.gov/sites/default/files/media/Hypochlorous%20Acid%20TR%2008%2013%2015.pdf. 

Wang, L, et al. “Hypochlorous Acid as a Potential Wound Care Agent: Part I. Stabilized Hypochlorous Acid: a Component of the Inorganic Armamentarium of Innate Immunity.” Journal of Burns and Wounds, Open Science Company, LLC, 11 Apr. 2007, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1853323/.