Category Archives: Eco-Friendly laundry

10 Green Laundry Habits

 
Our laundry rooms are places where we get everything clean, but they can also be sources of tremendous environmental dirt—water waste, chemical use, and energy consumption. Cleaning up your laundry habits will shrink your environmental footprint.
 
1.  Consider an HE Washer….I don’t have one… yet.  They consume less water, they use less detergent and they use less energy to run.  The average household does almost 400 loads of laundry each year, consuming about 13,500 gallons of water.  Switching to an Energy Star-qualified top-loading (or “horizontal axis”) machine can save as much as 7,000 gallons of water per year.

2.  Air Dry Laundry when you can.  It’s FREE and it is so much easier on clothing and linens.  A drying rack or a clothesline pay for themselves.
 
3. Clean your dryer’s lint filter. It will run more efficiently, save you money and prevent a fire.
 
4. Wear it more than once.  Unless it’s an unmentionable, socks, or has a fresh stain…why not tuck it back in your drawer or closet after an airing out and wear it a time or two before washing.

5. Use Green Laundry Soap.  Conventional laundry detergents contain ingredients that are not good for you, or the environment.  Look for products that indicate that the product is readily biodegradable and phosphate-free.  Look for plant-based ingredients {instead of petroleum based} which means they are healthier for the planet, from production to rinse cycle.   Green laundry soaps are so much gentler on your skin. {http://www.irishtwinssoaps.com/products/Lavender-Laundry-Concentrate.html}
 
6. Look for Concentrated Laundry Soap.  It’s the less is more theory.  They delivery more bang for your buck and cost less to package and ship.
 
Ditch the fabric softener.  White vinegar naturally balances the pH of soap, leaving your clothes soft and free of chemical residue. Use 1/4 cup in your rinse cycle. 
 
8.  Wash only full loads.  Saves water & energy. 

9. Use dryer sachets or linen sprays.  Dryer sheets break down organic fibers, shortening the life of your fabrics.  They can be full of cancer causing chemicals and neurotoxins such as toulene and styrene.  Use an all natural linen spray before you toss in the dryer or a lavender dryer sachet made from all natural lavender buds. {http://www.irishtwinssoaps.com/products/Lavender-Dryer-Sachets.html} 
 

10.  Use Dryer Balls.  They’re designed to separate clothes as they tumble, and the constant fluffing and air exchange results in a faster drying time.  They fluff and soften clothes without the use of chemical fabric softeners and they are reusable and long-lasting.  They are great for those with sensitive skin because they contain no chemicals and they are environmentally friendly.  Use wool dryer balls instead of the plastic ones that can cause off-gassing. {these are fun for the kids to find in the laundry too when they help fold 🙂 }

Wool Dryer Balls can be found on http://www.Etsy.com

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9 Toxic reasons NOT to use Fabric Softener or Dryer Sheets

It’s simple, fabric softener and dryer sheets are toxic.  They are a health hazard and  wreak havoc on the environment. If you have experienced breathing problems, headaches, memory loss, skin rashes, dizziness or other conditions, it may be linked to your laundry products.

Fabric softener was designed for synthetic fabrics and contain many synthetic ingredients.   Synthetic fabrics can often have a strong odor from the chemicals used to manufacture them.  The strong fragrances in fabric softeners are used to cover up both the chemicals in the clothing and in the fabric softener.  

Fabric softners may contain the following ingredients which may be harmful: 

  1. A-Terpineol (respiratory problems,  and central nervous system damage)
  2. Benzyl acetate ( Linked to pancreatic cancer)
  3. Benzyl alcohol ( Upper respiratory tract irritant)
  4. Camphor (causes central nervous system disorders)
  5. Ethanol (linked to central nervous system disorders)
  6. Ethyl Acetate (A narcotic on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list)
  7. Limonene (known carcinogen)
  8. Linalool (a narcotic that causes central nervous system disorders)
  9. Pentane (a chemical known to be harmful if inhaled)

Since these chemicals permeate the clothing, they gradually enter the body through the skin. 

Using fabric softener and dryer sheets repeatedly seals these chemicals into the fabrics.  (It may take 12-15 washes to really “clean” your clothes.Dryer sheets are particularly dangerous because when heated in the dryer, the chemicals are released through dryer vents and out into the environment.

The Solution?  GO GREEN

Use laundry products with all natural ingredients. 

Our lavender laundry concentrate is all natural and has NO toxins. It’s eco-friendly, and does a great job on cleaning clothes.  A little goes a long way – 2 tablespoons per load (or even less, if you have a high efficiency washer).    

Consider using white vinegar in your rinse cycle for fresh and clean smelling clothes, towels and linens. The vinegar will make clothes soft and fluffy too.   As a special treat, throw a lavender laundry sachet in the dryer with your sheets and towels.  Use it 5-8 times and then tuck it in with your undies or dishtowels.

Irish Twins Soap Co. Lavender Laundry Concentrate - 1 lb. & 4 lb. pkgs.

Irish Twins Soap Company Lavender Laundry Sachet

Another product to try er balls are fabric balls that fluff up clothing as it drys and takes up to 25% less time to dry a load.

Look for these and other eco-friendly products at http:www.irishtwinssoaps.com

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