Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent: Ultimate Guide [Tips + Best Solutions]
If pursuing a non-toxic lifestyle is something you are interested in, you have hopefully already audited your laundry room. Our laundry rooms may present as harmless enough, after all, how toxic can laundry detergent be? We come into immediate contact with it and its residues on our clothing, so it must be safe, right? Unfortunately, virtually all traditional liquid or powder detergents contain a potentially deadly chemical cocktail.
So can you achieve fresh, properly cleansed laundry and still have a non-toxic home? Luckily, you can, with plant-based, non-toxic laundry detergent.
Why Choosing a Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent is Important?
Most detergents contain upwards of 25 toxic ingredients. You can read about these in more detail on our blog dedicated to this topic, but in short, your detergent could be causing you and your family long-term damage. Its ingredients could be interfering with your hormones, triggering cancerous growths, creating issues with your skin or hair and impairing your respiratory functions.
As our skin is the body's largest organ and able to absorb chemical residues it comes into contact with, it is so important to minimize exposure. The frustrating thing is, so often these chemical ingredients are not listed - or there are other additives that legally are not required to be listed. Meaning that knowing exactly what is going into your wash can be virtually impossible.
If you think it is just your skin that is at risk, think again. If you are inclined to use your clothes dryer instead of air drying, those residues soon become vaporised and vented into your home with the dryer exhaust. Leading to increased risk of respiratory issues as well as eye, nose and throat irritation.
The Environmental Impact
The impact on the environment from traditional laundry detergents is more immediate and equally as damaging. Phosphates in some detergents lead to large-scale algal blooms which use up precious oxygen and suffocate marine life. The synthetic surfactants reduce the water tension and allow pollution to penetrate and toxify the waterways. Fish and seafood sourced in these waterways when consumed pass these toxins back to us, exposing us even further.
Oh and those “recyclable” plastic jugs and scoops? Less than 10% of these are recycled annually with the majority ending up in our landfills and oceans.
Signs You Should Switch
If you have ever experienced recurrent itchy skin, headaches, runny nose, watering eyes, thrush or hives and couldn't pin down the cause - it could be your detergent. As the above shows, it is packed with irritants, swapping out your regular detergent for a non-toxic alternative may be the solution to your recurrent issues.
How To Choose The Best Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent
You may be wondering what to look for once you decide to move to non-toxic laundry detergent as there is an increasingly wide variety to choose from. Here are a few tips to help you on your way.
- Choose those with clearly labelled, easily understood ingredients. Transparency counts and a genuinely non-toxic, eco-friendly option will have no concerns listing what is in their products.
- Avoid greenwashing, advertised as non-toxic and eco-friendly but still in a petro-chemical based plastic bottle? That's a conflict and a product you should avoid.
- Works just as well in cold water as hot - optimising it’s environmental friendliness.
- Should not contain preservatives or filler ingredients such as Methylisothiazolinone & Benzisothiazolinone or starch.
- Does not contain optical brighteners.
Ultimately, when choosing a non-toxic laundry detergent look for products that use minimal ingredients, are clearly labelled and list themselves as being biodegradable. A biodegradable detergent is less likely to include a myriad of toxic ingredients.
As an aside, you should also look for those that are concentrated and not reliant on heavy dilution with water. Most liquid detergents are 90% water, making them incredibly heavy for shipping (poor carbon footprint). This also means you mistakenly use more, with no greater cleaning power.
A Simple Non-Toxic Detergent Solution - Laundry Sheets
At Kind Laundry, we wanted to make it easier to enjoy a great wash day without the negative environmental impact or exposure to toxins. This is why we created our award-winning, non-toxic laundry sheets - pre-measured, pre-cut and zero fillers. Just effective cleansing from plant-derived ingredients you can trust.
With entirely compostable packaging (even our mailers), clearly listed ingredients and a host of positive reviews, you can trust us to care for you, your clothes and the environment.
So go ahead and enjoy a toxin-free laundry without having to compromise on cleanliness or your eco-friendly goals. Try Kind Laundry today.