Why Are Dryer Sheets Harmful and What to Replace Them With
Are you a fan of the dryer sheets? Are they a must when it comes to laundry time? Then you will want to read this.
For many people putting a dryer sheet in the laundry is something usual, harmless and also a routine. Because you end up having laundry that smells clean and fresh.
And clean and fresh smell should mean healthy, right? Actually, no.
Not according to one scientific research that was published in The Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health in May 2000.
In fact, the researchers performed their research on mice. These mice actually inhaled the substances from laundry that was dried with the use of dryer sheets
However, the seemingly healthy and fresh smells are actually detrimental when it comes to our respiratory system and the overall health.
According to the abstract of this study, the results are with toxicological basis. That explains some complaints from people that experience adverse reactions to the emissions of particular fabric softeners.
Also, the researchers noted that the presence of laundry that was dried with dryer sheets actually emitted a certain amount of toxic elements when put in a room.
Why Are Toxins In The Dryer Sheets and Why are They Bad?
It is hard to find out. Why? Because the US government does not require the manufacturers to present a list of the ingredients that are used to produce the fragrances that are artificial.
A researcher Anne Steinemann Ph.D. made a study about the chemicals that are emitted from the dryer vents. She detected 25 VOC’s i.e. volital organic compounds and 7 air pollutants that are hazardous.
There are toxins such as benzene and acetaldehyde that are not safe even if there are only low levels of them.
The actual exposure to such hazardous compounds can lead to headaches, respiratory disorders, increased severity and frequency when it comes to asthma attacks, runny nose, and skin irritations.
In the commercials of these dryer sheets, we often see vast, and fresh lavender fields with cute furry teddy bears dancing and enjoying.
However, the fact is that there is no real lavender in the dryer sheets. Instead, that are only imitations that are man-made and that are usually toxic.
So what can you do? For sure you still want your clothes to have a fresh and clean odor. You can stay safe and healthy if you opt for the natural alternatives. You can use essentials oils like peppermint oil and lavender oil.
And you can make your own homemade natural dryer sheets.
Follow These 6 Steps and DIY
1. The first thing you need to do is to wrap a wool yarn around your fingers. Wrap it around 2 fingers. Do that around 10 to 12 times.
Next thing you need to do is to wrap it around your middle finger around 4 to 5 times, and that will help you create a loop.
2. You will need to continue and wrap a wool yarn around the loop you have made in order to form a ball of yarn.
The ball of yarn should be around the size of an average tennis ball. You will need to make 3 to 4 wool balls.
3. Take an old pair of pantyhose you have and cut a leg from them. Then take one of the balls you have already made and put it in the bottom of where the foot should be.
Right above the ball tie a knot and make sure that is firm. Put the second ball and continue with the same procedure.
Continue so on until you finish with the last ball. In the end, it should look like a sausage.
4. You will need to wash this with your laundry and let it dry completely in the dryer.
5. Once it is dry, remove the balls from the pantyhose, and they are ready to be used.
6. These balls will serve as a replacement for the dryer sheets. You need to add few drops of peppermint essential oil or lavender essential oil onto the wool ball.
Add the essential oil before you use the balls. Remember that you can make blends of essential oils or if you do not like the lavender or peppermint essential oil you can choose another one.
Only 2 to 3 drops of oil on 1 ball is enough for 3 to 4 loads of laundry.
This will not only help you to protect yourself and your family from toxic chemicals, but in addition, it will help you to save money.
Other Alternatives For Toxic Free Laundry
You can use lemon essential oil in case you have to remove oil and grease from the laundry. All you need to do is to add few drops in the wash load.
For extra fragrance, you can take a wet towel put few drops of your favorite essential oil and put it in the dryer.
You can put a ball made of aluminum foil in the dryer if you want to reduce static.
If you want to have clean and soft laundry, simply use white vinegar. All you need to do is add ½ cup to the load. Do not worry, once everything is dry the smell of vinegar will be gone.
Source: Living Traditionally | Care2 | Guide to Less Toxic Products