A trip to the cleaning aisle in your local grocery is bound to be a confusing trip, with the variety of cleaning products you can choose from, especially laundry detergents. We truly have come far from the lye and animal fat from which the first bar soaps were formed; nowadays, there are endless fragrances and formulations you can choose from to wash your clothes with. Choosing the laundry detergent, you’re going to stick with should go beyond which one smells the best, or which one has the best bleaching action.
Laundry detergents, like any other products you use in your home, can contain toxic chemicals that may harm you or your family upon prolonged exposure. To ensure you’re living that clean and healthy lifestyle, it’s a useful habit to check your laundry detergent for any damaging ingredients.
In addition, you’d want to check for options that would not cause unnecessary harm to the environment. Your choice of laundry detergent, and all the chemicals included in there will directly end up in the air you breathe and down the drains into city water supply that may end up being recycled as drinking water, and notably, not all chemicals dissolved in the water could possibly be filtered out. By choosing wisely and doing your share, you’re committing to a healthier and greener lifestyle that absolutely benefits you and everyone.
Common Chemicals in your Detergent
Every specific brand of laundry detergent varies in some way in terms of their ingredient, normally according to the type of stain they’re targeted to remove. In fact, detergent manufacturers are allowed by law to not disclose all the ingredients they used, but it still is possible to make a more informed choice by scrutinizing what is included in there.
Detergents vary in strength and in composition, but surfactants are expected to be a major component, regardless. Surfactants, or surface active agents, are the chemicals that lower the water’s surface tension. This allows the cleaning solution in the detergent to quickly wet the clothes’ surface so that dirt or stains may be loosened or removed.
Builders normally make up 50% of detergent formulations vis à vis surfactants. They function as water softeners, and work in tandem with surfactants to enhance or maintain its cleaning efficiency.
Builders may also provide alkalinity, which assists in removing dirt, in grease removal, and in preventing particles from redepositing back into the fabric.
One of the earlier alkalis used were sodium carbonate, which is a particularly strong alkali. Phosphorus-based builders, such as ATMP, HEDP, and EDTMP, were introduced some time ago, although there have been studies relating these agents to serious environmental consequences. Some modern examples that are free of phosphorus are citric acid and sodium bicarbonate or your handy baking soda.
Among other chemicals typically found in a laundry detergent are laundry bleach, enzymes for different types of stains, and fragrances. “Fragrance” as a term is quite vague, as it may refer to different chemicals that can be hazardous. You may also want to watch out for some chemicals that remain in the clothes such as optical brighteners (additives emitting blue light to make whites appear whiter) and fabric softeners, as they tend to make contact with the skin and may cause irritation.
Steer Clear from These Chemicals
Aside from optical brighteners (common trade names include OB, OB-1, ER and KSN) and artificial fragrances, you may want to avoid some of these other chemicals as well:
- benzaldehyde – bleach that may cause irritation to skin, mouth, throat and eyes
- diethanolamine – detergent that may cause irritation, and has also been linked to causing various tumors and harm to reproductive and developmental toxicity
- quarternium-15 – detergent that releases formaldehyde, which is carcinogenic and an irritant
- 2-butoxyethanol – stain remover and a dry cleaning chemical that has been known to cause birth defects and harmful effects in reproduction and development; also a carcinogen
- perchlorethylene – a dry cleaning chemical that is potentially carcinogenic, and has caused kidney and liver damage
- ethyl acetate – a fabric softener that is an irritant and also a known neurotoxin
- nonlyphenol ethoxylate – may be found in detergent and in dry cleaning aids; is a known hormone disruptor
- linear alkyl sodium sulfonate (LAS) – a detergent that is toxic to aquatic life and a skin and eye irritant
- petroleum distillates or napththas – a detergent linked to lung damage and cancer
Having a working knowledge with some of the most common chemicals in your laundry detergent pays to make a better, more informed choice when buying. It pays to read the ingredients and to look them up, and make a choice that strikes the balance between effectiveness, safety, and price be your guide.
If you want to free yourself, your family, and the environment from all the toxic and carcinogenic substances found in Tide, Gain and other toxic detergents, consider a brand NEW laundry detergent alternative that is completely safe and comes with a lot of other extra benefits:
1. ZERO chemicals and zero exposure to chemical residues, meaning you can have peace of mind that you are not exposing yourself to health-wrecking and cancer-causing chemicals
2. It SAVES you a ton of money long term, as you never have to buy laundry detergent ever again.
3. It helps protect the environment by reducing the amount of chemicals from laundry detergent that flow into our rivers, streams, and groundwater, thereby helping to provide us ALL with cleaner drinking water, and less environmental harm.
This new laundry detergent alternative that I’m referring to is called The LifeMiracle Magnetic Laundry System , and I’m actually blown away by how this works, and the benefits for all of us!
Now, I will admit that I was HUGELY skeptical that this would actually work as a detergent alternative, but if you watch the short little video clip on their website, they explain the science of how it actually works for all the skeptics out there. I just started using mine this week, and it really DOES work!
They also explain how you can still get your clothes smelling good (instead of smelling like nothing) without having to use detergent.
This is really impressive, and you’ll want to watch this super short video clip where they explain how it works…
Your body will thank you, as will your wallet and the environment!