Laundry is one of those never-ending tasks that sometimes haunts us in our dreams. The washing machine especially seems to eat socks and that can never be found again. You throw all the clothes in and just hope and pray they all survive the journey through the cycle of washing and drying and land safely back into our dresser drawers.
Just me? Maybe you aren’t quite as anxious as I am about losing socks in the laundry, but you cannot deny that laundry can be an overwhelming chore.
And then you must consider the environmental impact of completing all of those cycles of washing and drying. The USA National Parks service offers a variety of tips to help reduce water waste in a recent article they published about water conservation, read it here: https://www.nps.gov/articles/laundry.htm.
And what about the toxins that can be found in scented laundry detergent and dryer sheets? Your skin absorbs a large amount of toxic chemicals so finding low waste, non-toxic laundry options for your health and home is a must. Some ingredients to be looking out for to avoid include: phthalates (endocrine disrupting chemicals found in plastic), BPA (endocrine disruptor and can also impact brain development in children), Formaldehyde (may cause cancer), Parabens (hormone disruptor, may cause breast cancer), Fragrance (possible endocrine and hormone disruptor), Sodium Laureth Sulfate (may cause skin irritations), Triclosan (endocrine disruptor, may cause irritation in the lungs), Siloxanes (immune system disruptor and may cause issues in overall reproductive health) and Aluminum (may increase risk for breast cancer).
So where is the best place to begin?
1. Switch to plant based, ultra-concentrated laundry detergent.
Start checking the ingredient list on your current laundry soap. Does your detergent contain any of the toxic chemicals listed above? Make a plant based laundry detergent swap. If you haven’t yet, download the Think Dirty App and scan the various brands available at your grocery store. Be aware of greenwashing and the companies that claim to be non-toxic or environmentally friendly that really aren’t.
3. Swap scented dryer sheets for wool dryer balls.
Wool dryer balls are a fantastic low waste swap to add to your laundry room! Using wool dryer balls can also cut down on your drying time, which is a win for the busy momma and a win for the environment. If you are worried about the missing the scent of fresh, clean laundry, add some of these delicious essential oil combinations to your wool dryer balls:
For each combination add 2-5 drops of essential oil: