Today I stumbled upon Eco Mama's blog post about mainstream fabric softeners and started to realize how odd the use of any laundry detergent or softener that has the advertised ocean, orchid, summer breeze, green apple etc. fragrance (read: toxic smell).
I quit using mainstream laundry or household chemicals already long ago, I stopped putting chemical stuff in my bathroom from shampoo to toothpaste.. I love to have my bed made with freshly washed linen that's dried outside. Since I do all of my laundry with either wash-ball or ecological Frosch laundry detergent, it doesn't have any smell after washing and winding outside. It just feels fresh and crisp. Mmm, same applies to my cloth and my babies nappies- fresh, clean, no smells!
I actually have no idea why people still buy what commercials tell them- like, that they need synthetic smells in their detergent. There's not a single detergent that actually can smell like a "spring morning" or "summer breeze".. And even worst- the idea that we need softeners! Isn't that a little crazy? The fabric in almost all cases is as soft as it is supposed to be and with most of fabrics- it gets softer with every use and washing. Unless you have terribly hard water, there's absolutely no need of some other toxic liquid in your washing machine. It's just a commercial trick how to make people buy stuff they actually do not need. I do my laundry without any softener and my clothes and bed linen feel perfectly soft. And remembering the times when I did buy fabric softener- I couldn't tell the difference when I used it and when I had run out of it. So stop letting yourself be fooled by colorful advertisements. And if your water is really, really hard- try some greener alternatives like vinegar!
Eco Mama gave me a kick to say something about this, but the thinking about the toxic smells of laundry started this weekend when I had to make a bed for my cousin. When I started to live at my parents home again, I persuaded my mom to use the ecological laundry detergent not only occasionally, but for all their laundry as well. So from then on we all used the same one. But this weekend we had many guests to my grandmom's 70th birthday party and I was pulling out the linen that was deep in the closed unused for loooong long time.. So long that it had been washed with the conventional detergent.. (note- I started living back here almost 7 months ago). I have a habit of smelling the clean sheets before making the bed. Oh my... It smelled.. toxic! Yuk! You recognize the synthetic fragrance as Eco mama says: "the same way a non smoker smells smoke ". And it just made me shiver when I realized how long it stays there= how noxious it is. Any natural smell would have evaporated by now.. I think the worst part is that this is the smell that seems attractive to many people who have got used to it, and it is so wrong! It is quite like smoking- when you do it, it doesn't seem so awful and smelly. But when you quit, the longer you don't smoke, the more repulsive the smell becomes.. I think it's worth to take the education mission on and tell your friends, family and other people how different their life can be. And maybe they will see that they sleep better in toxic-free bed and feel better in clothes that don't smell like plastic green apples..
The only mainstream stuff I still have had for a while was make-up and perfume bottles and I made a promise to myself to obey two basic rules for future. First- I'm not buying a single conventional perfume or make-up ever again. Second- I'm not buying any make-up item before I run out of that particular color or item that I already have. Same applies to perfume. And I have managed it all perfectly well.. Until recently I realized how bad was the stuff that I actually have..
It's been five months since I've become a mom that obviously spends most of her time at home.. It's been almost seven months since I've been living in the country side. That means I've lived make-up and perfume free for most of my time (I've been having luxury of mascara when going somewhere out).. But recent festivities like New Years eve and my grandmom's birthday made me want to have something more of my make-up kit. I had my great Clarins eye shadows, YSL mascara and BY bronzer.. Well, mascaras never provoked anything with me.. but these eye shadows made my eyes water in about an hour for the rest of the night.. Awful experience! And perfumes! Yuk! At the moment I sprayed on my lovely j'adore I felt sick.. it seemed so unnatural, poisonous and strong that I felt like I'm endangering myself and my child by wearing them.. I guess I will have to buy some greener options with a hope that it doesn't have the same effects.. (I did like some Pacifica perfumes I found in Whole Foods while still in London like Waikiki Pikake)
I guess living in countryside free from many previous daily practices can spoil you after all. I want to live my life toxic free and that means also toxic smells free. No artificial smell makes you or your clothes smell more clean than they can be without the synthetic fragrances. Let's have some clean break for our noses on green carpet!