Tuesday, June 23, 2009

One Thing At a Time: Laundry Detergent

I don't particularly like floral scented things and I really hate any kind of cleaning product that smells like food. Dish soap that smells like apples? Detergent that smells like oranges? Dog shampoo that smells like watermelon? That last one is the weirdest. Why would I want my dog to smell like fruit?

I was using Cheer Free and Gentle, but I took running out of laundry detergent as an opportunity to switch to a green cleaner. Target had Seventh Generation Laundry Cleaner on sale, so I went with it.

I think I ended up going with the lavender and eucalyptus scented one. It smells like a hippie. I really don't know how else to describe it. It's natural and earthy and... like a hippie.

I did the first load and when I opened the machine and caught a whiff of the laundry, I wasn't sure if "wet hippie" was something I wanted to be smelling. It smelled a little funky. I threw the towels in the dryer, tossed my jeans on the drying rack and prayed for the best. I'll tell you, opening the dryer was a much better smell. It just smelled like warm, clean clothes. It didn't smell like plants, it didn't smell like food. It just smelled clean. The clothes that air dried smelled fine too. They don't smell as fresh, but they don't smell bad, and what else can you really ask for?

Laundry detergent is kind of a mystery to me. After reading some labels and product reviews, it turns out that a lot of detergents are petroleum-based and have some form of plastic in them. Call me crazy, but that seems a little bizarre. The more I read about this stuff, the more alarmed I am at the amount of crap we willingly allow into our homes.

On a little side note... Is it possible to make your own laundry cleaner? Is there some magic combination of baking soda and borax or something that will get the job done even safer and cheaper than a $12 bottle of Seventh Generation?


Shannon said...

I have a great little book at home with all sorts of 'recipes' for eco-friendly homemade stuff. I'll check it out tonight.

Chrince said...

That would be great! Let me know if you find anything. I should get a book like that.