Alternatives to Conventional Laundry Products
What is something that we use weekly and don’t think about it being on our skin almost constantly? Laundry detergent and dryer sheets! When washing our clothes we want them to come out clean so we need an effective detergent but conventional laundry detergents and dryer sheets can contain toxins and more!
Many dryer sheets contain chemicals that react with the air to create formaldehyde, a probable human carcinogen. Other common dryer sheet pollutants include acetaldehyde and benzene, which are not considered safe at any level.
Clothes are worn almost all hours of the day, which is a lot of time exposing ourselves to the detergents with which we wash our clothes. The chemicals on our clothes can thus impact our overall health and the health of our children. And we don’t just expose ourselves to the detergent we use but the dryer sheets that are commonly used. There is another option though. Wool dryer balls are a great way to speed up drying time and soften clothes without coating the clothes in artificial fragrances and wax. You can find a set of 6 dryer balls available on our website under laundry. You can find the balls at: https://dandelionnaturals.com/product/6-pack-100-new-zealand-wool-dryer-balls/
To add more natural fabric softener:
Fill a spray bottle with 2 cups of white vinegar. Add 15 drops of essential oil of your choice. Spray some of the softener into your dryer, onto wet laundry. Then dry as you would normally.
What to look for in a laundry detergent?
What does a good detergent need to contain? Alkali substances are necessary for cleaning. These substances help react with an acid to neutralize it. They are effective in removing dirt and stains from fabric without excessive rubbing. Soluble salts of an alkali metal, such as potassium or sodium, are good grease removers. They form an emulsion of the oily or solid particles that are held in suspension in wash water to be rinsed away.
A surfactant is also needed. Surfactants work by lifting dirt and oils off the fabric and attaching it to the water, so the dirt gets rinsed away when the water drains out of the machine. They break up stains and suspend the dirt in the water to prevent the redeposition of the dirt onto the surface.
Conventional Detergents such as Tide, All, etc, contain things like:
-Optical brighteners which coat clothes in a blue light-reflecting substance that causes the clothes to appear brighter.
-Fragrances: Synthetic fragrances may have phthalates. Phthalates esters are considered endocrine disruptors that show antiandrogenic, estrogenic, and antithyroid activities. These can have negative impacts on cognitive function and fertility.
-Cancer-causing agents such as: Polyethyleneimine Alkoxylated and C10-16 Pareth.
Internal organ damaging, skin burning, lung irritating agents, and more.
-Contain ingredients that neutralize compounds that would eat through the plastic bottle that the liquid is stored in.
-Even the detergents titled free and clear or baby safe can contain some of these toxic chemicals.
-Are sold in plastic bottles. Plastic is shown to be endocrine disrupting and negatively impact the metabolism as well as fertility. BPA has even been shown to negatively affect the timing of puberty for a young female, even if the exposure was only
If you would like to find out if your laundry detergent is toxic and which of the ingredients are toxic check out EWG.ORG. To see a more detailed list of conventional laundry detergent ingredients then check out the bottom of this blog post.
You could make your own laundry detergent using Dandelion Naturals Laundry Bar (surfactant). This would require grating the bar and mixing it with ingredients like baking soda and washing soda (alkali).
You can find our laundry bar at: https://dandelionnaturals.com/product/the-laundry-bar/
Or if you don’t have the time or energy to make your own we have 5 different laundry detergents available on our website. Four of our powdered detergents are made with pure essential oils and one is unscented. We package our laundry detergent in plastic-free packaging and have amazing reviews from customers that have tried our detergent. You can check out our laundry detergents at: https://dandelionnaturals.com/product-category/laundry/
You may be wondering but what about stain remover? And you would be right that stain remover contains many toxic ingredients also. So of course we have created a solution that is non-toxic and effective. You may find our stain remover at: https://dandelionnaturals.com/product/all-natural-stain-stick/
Examples of Tides ingredients:
If an ingredient listed below doesn’t include additional comments then toxic information was not found concerning the ingredient.
MEA C10-16 Alkylbenzenesulfonate
Alkyl benzene sulfonates or ABS (also linear alkyl benzene sulfonates or LAS, linear alkyl sodium sulfonates).
A class of synthetic surfactants (usually identified as “anionic surfactants.”) ABS are very slow to biodegrade and seldom used.
Propylene glycol is a synthetic liquid substance that absorbs water. Propylene glycol is also used to make polyester compounds, and as a base for deicing solutions. Propylene glycol is used by the chemical, food, and pharmaceutical industries as an antifreeze when leakage might lead to contact with food. Respiratory (From the Nose to the Lungs)
MEA Laureth Sulfate
Use restrictions (high), Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs) (low), and Contamination concerns (high) Dangerous if left on the skin.
MEA Salts Of C12-18 Fatty Acids
May contain impurities that cause genetic defects and cancer
Cancer causing, central nervous system impairment, liver damage, skin irritant.
Causes severe skin burns and eye damage, harmful if inhaled or swallowed.
PEG-136 Polyvinyl Alcohol
Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate
Disodium Distyrylbiphenyl Disulfonate
Hydrogenated Castor Oil
Subtilisin-It is an enzyme that could cause irritation to eyes, skin, lungs
Denatonium Benzoate (makes it taste bitter)
We hope this information doesn’t scare you but informs you so that you can make the best decisions for you and your family. Also, we are proud to offer other non-toxic, plastic-free resources on our website.