Laundry Detergents: Cleaning your clothes or adding toxic chemicals? (Part 1 of 3)
I have had a lot of requests, messages and questions about laundry detergent over the past year and I have been holding off because I hadn’t found the perfect solution myself despite years of trying. Since I have tried so many things I want to break this down over the next few weeks so information doesn’t get lost. This week’s focus: toxins likely in your store bought detergent.
What to avoid:
Diethanolamine: This can be linked to tumors in kidneys and the liver. It has links to developmental toxicity and is considered an eye and skin irritant. EWG scores it as a 10 (the most toxic ranking) http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/search.php?query=Diethanolamine&h=Search
Quaternium-15: Added to help a product clean better. Another known carcinogen that releases formaldehyde. (Scores an 8 out of 10 according to EWG)
Nonylphenol ethoxylate: Also labeled as: AMMONIUM NONOXYNOL-4 SULFATE, AMMONIUM SALT PEG-4 NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE; AMMONIUM SALT POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL 200 NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE; AMMONIUM SALT POLYOXYETHYLENE (4) NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE; P-NONYLPHENOL, ETHOXYLATE, SULFATE, AMMONIUM SALT; PEG-4 NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE, AMMONIUM SALT; POLY (OXY-1,2-ETHANEDIYL) , .ALPHA.-SULFO-.OMEGA.- (4-NONYLPHENOXY) -, AMMONIUM SALT; POLY (OXY1,2ETHANEDIYL) , Î±SULFOÏ‰ (4NONYLPHENOXY) , AMMONIUM SALT; POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL 200 NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE, AMMONIUM SALT; POLYOXYETHYLENE (4) NONYL PHENYL ETHER SULFATE, AMMONIUM SALT; ALIPAL CO 436; ALIPAL CO-436
Linear alkyl sodium sulfonates (LAS): Toxic to aquatic life and may be a skin and eye irritant.
Petroleum distillates(also called naphthas): This ingredient can be linked to cancer and lung damage.
Fragrances: We have covered this a lot in the past. A “Fragrance” covered by trade secret may include any number of over a thousand different chemicals. Some have never been tested for safety and others are known carcinogens.
Polyalkylene oxide or ethylene oxide: One or both may be added to help “stabilize” the product. Both are linked to respiratory issues, kidney and liver damage.
naphthotriazolystilbenes benzoxazolyl, diaminostilbene disulfonate. These may be linked to reproductive issues and do not necessarily “wash off” your clothing.
I once used the “Think Dirty” app to scan almost an entire isle at Target. Some that I assumed were going to come out on the better end-did NOT. It was actually shocking and I left without detergent. I was determined to find a safer detergent. Next week we will explore some other options I tried and what the downfalls were.
*Please note: This list does NOT include toxins in dryer sheets since that was covered in a previous post)