Researchers from a small 2012 study published in the Ear, Nose & Throat Journal found that the use of 70% isopropyl alcohol was effective in reducing the accumulation of earwax when administered weekly to patients through a squeeze bottle. No complications were reported and the researchers deemed the practice safe and effective in minimizing doctor visits for professional earwax removal.
In addition to keeping our ears clean, rubbing alcohol may also offer benefits to those with swimmer’s ear. The condition occurs when water becomes trapped in the outer ear canal and leads to a bacterial infection. However, rubbing alcohol works by causing this water to evaporate (via University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics). Similarly, when mixed with apple cider vinegar, rubbing alcohol may potentially help ease symptoms of an ear infection by further helping to dry out the ear and protect against the growth of bacteria and fungus (per Medical News Today). But just how much rubbing alcohol should we be using?