As a fellow eco-warrior, you are probably aware of the fact that commercial laundry detergents are terrible for the environment. These artificially scented suds do not biodegrade and contaminate our water sources, waterways, and oceans with harmful heavy metals. On top of this, many studies have shown that phosphates, a natural element in detergents, build up in our waterways and lead to eutrophication—large algal blooms that deprive fish and aquatic life of oxygen.
The list of toxic chemicals found in commercial laundry detergents can be quite overwhelming. Not only do these chemicals end up polluting our planet but are also hazardous to our health.
Is Laundry Detergent Hazardous to My Health?
While our quest for clean clothes may have had the best intentions, in reality, we have made quite a dirty mess.
Laundry detergents were designed to help make our clothes clean, not fill them with artificial fragrances, parabens, phosphates and chlorine bleach. Washing everything with laundry detergent means that our skin will be absorbing everything the detergent comes in contact with; including the clothes you wear and the sheets you sleep on.
These chemicals can lead to a variety of skin allergies, aggravate asthma and can even contribute to hormone disruptions.
Fortunately, it’s 2021 and finding an all-natural laundry detergent is becoming a bit easier these days—but it’s important to keep in mind that a lack of chemicals doesn’t necessarily make a laundry detergent sustainable or eco-friendly.
So what are some solutions to a truly environmentally friendly laundry day?
Make Natural Laundry Detergent at Home
Many eco-friendly and non-toxic laundry products can easily be made at home with just a few ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen cupboard.
Here are some easy tips and tricks that you can you use for zero waste laundry at home.
Use vinegar instead of fabric softener.
Instead of liquid fabric softener add 1/2 cup white vinegar to your laundry final rinse. Many washers have a special rinse cycle setting that you can use.
Homemade laundry detergent
1 bar (4 oz) Castile Soap finely grated
1 cup Borax
1 cup Washing Soda
Mix and use 1/4 cup per load
Say bye-bye to dryer sheets.
Dryer sheets are definitely on the naughty list when it comes to waste.
Opt for reusable dryer balls instead— and if you miss the fresh (though artificial) scent of dryer sheets, just toss in a small hand towel with a few drops of your favorite essential oil and your clothes will smell like they just got back from a day at the spa!
With over a billion laundry detergent plastic jugs being discarded in the United States annually, doing a load of laundry can have a huge impact on your carbon footprint.
Many laundry detergent companies are stepping up their game and offering eco friendly laundry options by selling highly concentrated laundry soap in the form of detergent strips and laundry detergent pods made with natural ingredients in hopes to combat pollution.
But while these laundry strips and pod detergents are free from parabens, phosphates, and chlorine bleach—they still can come wrapped in plastic packaging or packaging that isn’t readily biodegradable.
Super frustrating when you’re trying to do your best to stick to a zero waste lifestyle.
What’s the point of doing laundry with non-toxic soap if it still produces loads of un-recycled plastic waste? At Tangie Waste Free Products, we get it and that’s why we offer our zero waste laundry detergent bar.
This tiny bar completely dissolves in water to make one gallon of liquid laundry detergent and is made from all natural, plant-based ingredients including coconut oil, olive oil and soap nuts.
Our laundry soap is fragrance-free, cruelty-free and works perfectly in any washing machine including high-efficiency machines for a cleaner than clean laundry day! The dissolved laundry soap will look beautiful on your shelf when used with our wooden laundry soap dispenser.
When choosing to use natural products, looking beyond the ingredients is now a necessity. Packaging matters! At Tangie, we offer minimal (we use compostable cardboard) or no packaging options, so you decide how to use, store and dispense the products that keep you clean and healthy while keeping you on your chosen zero-waste path.
When choosing your own container, one needn’t overthink as any old container will do! Keep in mind that you don’t have to dissolve an entire gallon all at once. You can simply cut the bar into smaller portions to fit your chosen container.
If you’re worried about using just the right amount (it’s ok to be obsessive about laundry) we also offer our laundry soap dispenser lid made from locally sourced reclaimed wood.
Don’t you think this picture would look even better without the plastic laundry jug?
Zero Waste Stain Remover
Stains happened just as much as, well, life happens. A muddy hike, grassy paws, or maybe you just enjoyed your red wine so much that you felt the need to see how it looked on your shirt. Either way, no need to toss aside your ethics and succumb to a plastic tube filled with chemicals in the name of clean.
Our zero waste laundry stain remover bar will have your clothes looking brand-spankin’ new again— as a matter of fact, you’ll start to wonder if that coffee spill during your morning meeting was just a figment of your imagination (it wasn’t).
Made with plant-based ingredients and a pleasant lemongrass scent, our formula is tough on stains but gentle on the environment. To use, wet the stained area of fabric, rub the stain remover bar over the stain and toss your soon-to-be stain-free shirt into the wash.
That’s it, simple and convenient!
Now that you have conquered your quest for clean clothes and have joined in on the zero waste laundry lifestyle, please consider passing on your knowledge to help others make the switch over to a plastic free life — our Mother Earth thanks you!
This lady is NOT Mother Earth,
but she is excited to know you are making the switch! Smiling face outline with solid fill