At Danu world, we are all about living ethical, eco-friendly and sustainable lifestyles, and we have a wide range of Plastic Free Cleaning Products to get you started. Choosing natural cleaning products is an excellent way of eliminating a whole chunk of toxic chemicals from your home. Chemicals found on our cleaning products usually cause harm not only to our environment but also our bodies. Making the switch to Plastic Free Cleaning Products is a move in the right direction. For instance, instead of using cleaning scrubs made from plastic and nylon, you can use a plastic-free brush with plant-based bristles instead.
Laundry and Cleaning
No one enjoys laundry day, which is often every day if you have a big household. But it’s also a process that can be resource intensive and release a significant amount of chemicals into the environment. If you have already ditched the fairy liquid, switched to organic soap and buy organic cotton clothing then choosing green cleaning products or eco-friendly detergents for your laundry room is a no-brainer and can also be very cost effective.
Conventional detergent is often derived from petroleum and contains a number of chemicals that are bad for both the environment and can have a negative impact on your health, particularly if you have sensitive skin or suffer from skin conditions such as eczema.
Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergents - Soapnuts
In contrast, Greenfrog Botanic Laundry Soapnuts, are completely natural, and we love using chemical-free detergents. Greenfrog uses only the highest quality certified organic soap nuts, sustainably grown in the Himalayan foothills. Everyone involved in Greenfrog is paid fairly for their work and they are working towards achieving fair trade status.
Natures best laundry detergent, soap nuts offer gentle natural cleaning. They are naturally hypoallergenic, anti-fungal, phosphate free and anti-bacterial, leaving clothes fresh and free of chemicals, so they are gentle to clothes and your skin. The naturally occurring saponin in the berries works as a surfactant, breaking the surface tension of the water to create a lather that penetrates the fibres of the fabric, lifting away dirt, grease and stains.
Soap nuts require hot or warm water to work so if you wash with cold water it’s best to soak them for a few minutes in hot water and put the soap nuts and water into the washing machine as this releases the saponins.
A truly sustainable, organic laundry detergent that offers a waste-free way of washing your clothes. When you’ve used them a few times they can simply be put in the compost bin. And if you wish to save water you can cut down the rinse cycle and the grey water from your washing machine is totally safe to use on your garden.
You can also use soap nuts to make a laundry liquid that is great for hand washing or using when camping. We think you’ll be surprised at how well they wash clothes and remove stains although stubborn stains may require pre-soaking.
They act as a natural softener and reduce static, again though if you do require an additional softener white vinegar works well, especially in hard water areas. As well as being a water softener vinegar will help to brighten whites, as can the addition of baking soda. Nature really does make the best cleaning products.
These eczema friendly Ayurvedic berries have been used as natural cleaners for centuries to treat soft, sensitive and dry skin. In particular in Ayurvedic medicine as a treatment for eczema and psoriasis. Perfect for baby clothes as they soften and clean without any nasties. And don’t worry if you have nut allergies, soap nuts aren’t actually nuts, they are a fruit related to the lychee.
They won't scent your clothes like standard laundry products. So if you miss the fragrance of your usual laundry products try adding a few drops of essential oil to the muslin bag with the berries. And we hear you can even use them to make natural shampoo, natural soap, dish soap and household cleaners for your toilet bowl and windows. (Although if that sounds a bit too much, Green Frog also make body soap and hand wash, enriched with organic essential oils and aloe vera).
If washing cloth nappies adding antibacterial essential oils such as eucalyptus, lemon, lavender or tea tree will help to disinfect the wash as well as adding fragrance.
For those who aren’t quite ready to make the switch to soap nuts, bumGenius Liquid Laundry Detergent is another plant-derived eco-friendly detergent which won't cause skin irritation and is kind to the environment.
Specially formulated to work for all laundry including cloth nappies, this eco-friendly detergent is naturally hypoallergenic and free from phosphates, sulphates, bleaching agents, dyes, fragrances, and optical brighteners.
Need convincing. Some of the chemicals found in laundry detergent include:
- Phenols: Used as a disinfectant they are toxic cleaning agents, a suspected carcinogen and rapidly absorbed. Effects can include swelling, pimples, and hives.
- Optical brighteners: Added to laundry detergent to make clothes appear brighter. They are synthetic chemicals that convert UV light wavelengths into visible light. They’ve been found to be toxic to fish and to cause bacterial mutations.
- Linear alkyl sodium sulfonates (LAS): These are synthetic surfactants added to laundry soap to act as detergent or foaming agent. They biodegrade slowly and their production process releases harmful toxins into the environment.
- Petroleum distillates (aka napthas): These chemicals have been linked to cancer, lung damage, lung inflammation and damage to mucous membranes.
- Phosphates: These chemicals are used to remove hard-water minerals to make cleaning agents more effective, and to prevent dirt from settling back onto clothes during a wash. A major problem with them is that, when released into the environment, they stimulate the growth of certain marine plants, which contributes to unbalanced ecosystems.
- Sodium hypochlorite (household chlorine bleach): A highly toxic chemical that reacts with organic materials in the environment, producing carcinogenic and toxic compounds.
- EDTA: Used as an alternative to phosphates, EDTA is a skin irritant leading to allergies, asthma, and skin rashes. EDTA does not biodegrade readily and can re-dissolve toxic heavy metals in the environment, allowing them to re-enter the food chain.
- Artificial fragrance: There simply to make clothes smell Ã¢€Å“fresh. They have toxic effects on fish and mammals, and often causes allergies, skin and eye irritation.
- Ammonia: Can cause burns, cataracts & corneal damage. Long-term repeated exposure can cause bronchitis and pneumonia. Also has a toxic effect on plants, animals and fish.
- Sodium Sulfate: It is corrosive and a severe eye, skin, and respiratory irritant. Can cause asthma attacks.
Traces of all these chemicals are likely to remain on your clothes after washing which means they get on your skin and the skin of your family. If you have chosen to use cloth diapers to avoid chemicals coming into contact with baby’s skin then you might also want to think about your laundry soap.
Dryer Balls and Linen Water
Once your laundry comes out of the washing machine we all know that hanging it out to dry in the sun is the best option. But if you have a tumble dryer bumGenius dryer balls are a natural fabric softener that reduces drying time by up to 20% making them energy saving as well as chemical free.
Made from 100% wool they are naturally hypoallergenic with no nasty chemicals that linger on your clothes and get transferred to your skin. And they can be used for years, so you’ll easily make back your initial investment in saved electricity alone.
And to add a fresh subtle fragrance to clothes we love the Trevarno Linen waters which can either be used for ironing or sprayed onto clothes while drying. They give a long lasting subtle floral fragrance, are 100% natural and kind to even the most sensitive of skin.