One of the most famous TV ads features a woman sprinting to her washing machine while holding a fabric softener, only to realize that she wasn’t adding the fabric softener until it was too late. This woman was actually doing herself and her family a favor when she simply forgot to add the fabric softener.
The most toxic products around are fabric softener and dryer sheets, even though they may make your clothes feel soft and smell fresh. If you know that most American household detergents, fabric softeners, bleaches, and stain removers contain chemicals that can cause cancer and brain damage, 99.8 percent of them would think twice before using them.
In fabric softeners and dryer sheets, the following chemicals are commonly found:
Benzyl acetate: Linked to pancreatic cancer
Benzyl Alcohol: Upper respiratory tract irritant
Ethanol: On the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Hazardous Waste list and can cause central nervous system disorders
A-Terpineol: Can cause respiratory problems, including fatal edema, and central nervous system damage
Ethyl Acetate: A narcotic on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list
Camphor: Causes central nervous system disorders
Chloroform: Neurotoxic, anesthetic and carcinogenic
Linalool: A narcotic that causes central nervous system disorders
Pentane: A chemical known to be harmful if inhaled
Soft Ocean Mist, Summer Orchard, April Fresh, and other products with pretty names, how could they be so harmful?
A heavy fragrance (50 times as much fragrance) is needed to cover up the pungent and strong-smelling chemicals in fabric softeners. It is also important to note that synthetic fabrics don’t smell good after they are heated in dryers or by our bodies, hence the need for even stronger fragrances, which is why fabric softeners were invented.
Taking out all the added fragrance that makes fabric softeners so appealing might cause people to shoot their laundry machines and just be done with it because the real smell of the chemical-laced fabric softener and the synthetic fabrics they were designed to work with might make them want to shoot them.
Are “Soft” Clothes Worth It?
Because fabric softeners are designed to remain in your clothing for a long time, the chemicals are released into the air or onto your skin. This leads to a slow release of chemicals into your environment. Because dryer sheets are heated in the dryer, their chemicals are released into the environment through dryer vents.
Chemicals found in fabric softeners are known to cause the following health effects:
Central nervous system disorders
Blood pressure reduction
Irritation to skin, mucus membranes and respiratory tract
Soften Your Clothes Safely With These Tips:
It is important to note that even if you don’t feel the effects of these chemicals today, they can affect you gradually over time, and children, whose bodies are still developing, are especially vulnerable to them. The use of these dangerous chemicals is unnecessary when natural alternatives exist. Not only are they safer for you, your family, and the environment, they’re also much more economical:
Add a quarter cup of baking soda to wash cycle to soften fabric
Add a quarter cup of white vinegar to rinse to soften fabric and eliminate cling Check out your local health food store for a natural fabric softener that uses a natural base like soy instead of chemicals
Despite being regarded as safe by consumers, many household products contain harmful chemicals, including fabric softeners and dryer sheets. Among our most popular articles on SixWise.com are our articles on PEG compounds in cosmetics and Phenols in Common Household Cleansers. These articles will help you become more aware of harmful chemicals in your home and how easy it is to eliminate them.
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