The Benefits of Organic Laundry Detergent
To live a green and healthy life, there are many changes we can all make in various areas of our life. One simple change you can make, is the choice of laundry detergent you use to wash your clothes. Most people would like to rid their homes of pollutants. But, how often do you think about these toxins thriving in the laundry room?
In looking at the bottles of laundry detergent that are sold in stores, we usually encounter ingredients that mean nothing to us, or find that a detergent has no ingredients listed at all. It seems odd in this day and age that any type of product could be sold without having an ingredients list, but that is exactly what happens with commercial brand laundry detergents in some cases.
When you do see a list, you'll probably notice surfactants as a common ingredient found in most laundry detergents.¹ This ingredient is a wetting agent that helps water to penetrate the fabric of your clothing. You should know that "surfactants" is not a particular ingredient name. It is simply listed in reference to a number of different chemicals that might be used. When surfactants are used, they release benzene into the environment. Benzene is a toxin that is believed to be responsible for causing cancer and reproductive disorders.
Many of the chemicals that are used in commercially branded laundry detergents have no real purpose in keeping our clothes clean. They are merely added so that our clothes will appear whiter or brighter to our eyes. Over time, exposure to these chemicals can cause allergies to laundry detergents.
What are we, the consumers of household cleaning products, supposed to do? The answer is simple. We can start purchasing an organic laundry detergent.
Organic laundry detergent does not contain chlorine, phosphates, or other chemicals that are dangerous to our health.² Another positive for any organic laundry detergent is that none of them contain synthetic dyes or perfumes. These ingredients can be extremely harmful to people who have sensitive skin or allergies, yet they are found in most popular brands of laundry detergent.
In fact, phosphates are a known water pollutant, and have caused considerable damage within our environment over the past 40 years. The use of phosphates has been hotly debated in recent years, as they are known to kill fish and plants, which throws our entire ecological system out of balance.
The toxic chemicals found in laundry detergents present a danger to the environment by way of the water. But guess what? They can also damage your skin and some give off fumes that you inhale when you breathe in the just dry clothes with their synthetic fragrances.
You can try to find many organic liquid detergents at your local grocery store. If you cannot find an organic detergent locally, you can always order it online. Keep in mind that organic detergents are usually more expensive than traditional brands, but the few extra dollars are more than worth it when you consider the harm that traditional brands can cause to our health.
As part of an effort by some manufacturers to go green and protect our environment, many laundry detergents are now being sold in smaller, concentrated forms.
This will supposedly help our environment by reducing the amount of plastic containers that wind up in landfills. While any effort to help our environment is certainly worthwhile, changing the containers of these detergents does not alter the toxic composition of the actual detergents that are being sold. Our best alternative is to use an organic laundry detergent for all of our clothing. These detergents are gentler, healthier, and safer for us to use.