HotHands Direct: How Do Hand Warmers Work?

HotHands Direct Blog: How Do Hand Warmers Work? Hot hands warmers, hot hands foot warmers, hot hands toe warmers, how hand warmers work, the science of hand warmers

HotHands hand warmers are fast, effective, safe and convenient – but maybe you’re curious about how exactly they work. Who wouldn’t be? It seems incredible: open a Hot Hands pack and it warms up in minutes all by itself, without needing to be squeezed, lit, or shaken. It’s no magic trick, though, or even a technological feat. The secret is exposing the natural ingredients to air.

HotHands hand warmer products are sealed inside top-quality airtight packaging. This gives the hand warmers a shelf-life of four years or more when unopened. As soon as you open a HotHands pack and remove the mesh bag, though, the specially formulated contents of the bag (which include iron powder, salt, and activated charcoal) are exposed to oxygen and react with it in a process called oxidation. This process is what makes HotHands warmers work.

It's probably been a while since high school chemistry, so here's a quick refresher. The basic idea is that oxidation is what makes iron rust. The technical name for rust is “iron oxide,” which is the chemical produced when iron and oxygen react with one another, usually when iron is exposed to air and moisture. Oxidation is an exothermic reaction; in other words, it produces heat. The faster the reaction, the more heat is produced. Iron rusts relatively slowly, and so it produces very little heat. It wouldn’t be enough for you to notice even if you held a rusting piece of iron in your hand.

HotHands warmers take advantage of this same chemical reaction, but they’re specifically designed to oxidize much faster in order to produce much more heat. The unique Hot Hands formula of ingredients ensures that the warmers’ contents “rust” completely and quickly, to produce temperatures between 100 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on the specific product. But these ingredients are also carefully balanced to continue producing steady warmth for hours at a time.

This reliance on natural processes and carefully selected ingredients means Hot Hands hand warmers are safe to store, use whenever you want, and dispose of in your regular garbage. They’re so safe, in fact, that you can even take HotHands on a plane.

Now that you’re an expert in the science behind these hand warmers, stock up and gift them to your friends with a super warmer bulk pack so they can stay toasty the safe and easy way!

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