Between the sheets we sleep on at night to the clothes we wear during the day, our laundry detergent stays with us all the time. Many of the laundry detergents that line store shelves are loaded with synthetic fragrances and chemicals that most of us couldn’t pronounce or describe, and for those who struggle with sensitive skin, eczema, allergies, or redness, finding the right laundry detergent can be a serious challenge. Finding the right detergent is also important for parents with babies or young children, as their skin tends to be far more delicate and sensitive.
Those highly fragranced laundry detergents can be drying and irritating, the harsh chemicals making anything from sleeping to everyday living uncomfortable. Learning how to decode the laundry aisle and make the switch to natural laundry detergent can help keep your skin healthy and happy.
In the world of fresh laundry, there seem to be a million detergent options to pick from. Some promote long-lasting scents, some boast stain-fighting powers, and some promise to brighten dingy clothes. It’s hard to pick which formula to go with, especially with so many on the market.
Most laundry detergents all work in roughly the same manner. They clean fabrics by combining water, surfactants, and water softeners, or rinse agents. Some also use enzymes for extra stain and odor-fighting, since they target the source of each stain and odor, rather than blanketing the fabric with oxygen bleach. (Our 10X concentrated Puracy Natural Laundry Detergent uses enzymes.)
A study done by doctors Charles Crawford, PhD and Matthew J. Zirwas, MD shows that, “on average, 2.5% of detergent remains on fabric after washing and 2 rinse cycles.” They go on to explain the different types of surfactants – surface-active agents that interact with stains – and the ways that certain formulations of surfactants can irritate skin and cause reactions in people. When harsh chemicals and fragrance sit on the surface layer of the skin they can create a perfect storm for allergies and skin issues, especially for those with sensitive skin.
In addition to skin issues and sensitivity, the chemicals in conventional laundry detergents aren’t great for the environment or for general public health. A study of top-selling laundry products and air fresheners done by the University of Washington showed that “the products emitted dozens of different chemicals. All six products tested gave off at least one chemical regulated as toxic or hazardous under federal laws, but none of those chemicals were listed on the product labels.”
A separate UW study also showed that air coming from dryer vents of machines used with scented detergents and laundry products was toxic. A canister placed in a dryer vent opening 15 minutes into the cycle found more than 25 volatile compounds. The lead author of both studies, Anne Steinemann, said that “these products can affect not only personal health, but also public and environmental health. The chemicals can go into the air, down the drain and into water bodies.”
By switching to a natural alternative like Puracy Natural Laundry Detergent, you can avoid harsh chemicals and strong fragrances that irritate skin and emit toxic gases. In addition to being safer, natural laundry detergent is also better for maintaining the original color and luster of your clothes and sheets.
Whether you’re a workout clothes maven or you prefer snuggling in your warm sheets, having a laundry detergent that is safe and non-irritating is a must for every home, especially those with babies or young children with sensitive skin. Try Puracy Natural Laundry Detergent for a load of clothes that you can trust are clean – the natural way. And for those times when you need a little boost for tough spots, Puracy Natural Stain Remover works great and is also made of natural, safe ingredients.