Once upon a time a certain hippie-dancer-blogger-mom was doing laundry. Nothing new. Unfortunately, this certain hippie-dancer-blogger-mom wasn’t paying attention and somehow a pair of new blue jeans got mixed up with the whites. Whoops. Look who has a pile of grayish clothes now. Yeah. That would be me. Of course, in the “old days” I would have put the items back in the washing machine with some bleach… you know, the stuff we use to whiten clothes.
No more, my friends. No more.
I hope you guys won’t hate me for ratting out another common household product. I’ve already tattled on shampoo, fabric softener, tampons, and the like. Can’t I just leave bleach alone? But the truth is even bleach, a household chemical frequently used for generations, is not a great product to have around the house. Chlorine based bleach (oxygen based bleaches don’t fall into this same category) are really bad for you, your family, your pets, and the environment!
Why? Well, consider the following:
- Bleach can often cause respiratory issues.
- It can also cause burns to the skin and even nervous system damage.
- Allergies and asthma are often irritated by bleach and can cause serious reactions in those who have problems with these conditions already.
- Beyond causing its own problems, chlorine bleach also has some really dangerous potential reactions with other chemicals and materials.
- Each year thousands of calls are made for help and of those calls about 1/4th of them are related to bleach and the household cleaners that contain them. Many of these accidents involve children and can be potentially fatal.
Yes, the simple stuff we use to whiten clothes is not safe. In fact, bleach can be deadly.
Okay, I know I’m sounding a little dooms-day here. And chances are if you use bleach you keep it in safe place and use it responsibly. That’s good. But is it enough?
Because bleach mixes so easily with so many other products that produce a wide range of toxins, we should be concerned. Many of the chemicals produced through chemical reactions with chlorine bleach are toxins that are known carcinogens. These chemicals build up in the environment. They get into the water and food supply, and increase our risk for many negative health issues. Once again we all have a part to play to keeping our world safe.
But it’s okay!
It’s easy to make your own bleach. You can disinfect your bathrooms, clean your toilets, and whiten your clothes naturally with homemade bleach.
Whiten clothes naturally with homemade bleach
- 1 ½ cup 3% hydrogen peroxide
- ½ cup lemon juice
- Distilled water to fill a gallon jug
- 10 – 12 drops lemon essential oil
1. Mix all ingredients together in gallon jug. Gently shake to combine.
2. Use one cup of homemade bleach in your washing cycle to whiten clothes.
As you can see it definitely brightened my whites. What about all those icky used-to-be-white-but-now-are-gray clothes? Well, they aren’t sparkingly white, but they do look better. I plan on giving them the homemade bleach treatment a few more times.
So, how do you whiten clothes in your home?
This post is part of Monday Mania, Natural Living Monday, Sunday School, Make Your Own Monday, Frugal Days Sustainable Ways, Living Green Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday,Healthy 2Day Wednesday, Creative Juice Thursday, Clever Chicks, Simply Natural Saturdays, The Mommy Club, Small Footprint Friday, and Sweet Sharing Monday.
NOTE: Due to an never-ending cesspool of spam, I have made the tough decision to close comments 14 days after the original posting of all posts. Sorry to anyone left out of the conversation. I just needed to spend less time monitoring spam and more time with my kids. Best wishes, Robin!