Top Green Laundry Tips |
Wear it more than once
It doesn't go for everything (unmentionables and socks come to mind), but the simplest way to cut back on your laundry's impact is to--duh!--just do less of it. Wearing your clothes more than once before tossing them in the dirty pile is the first step in greening your laundry habits.
Use green laundry detergent
Conventional detergents can contain ingredients that aren't good for you, your clothes, or aquatic ecosystems where the dirty water we wash down the drain can end up. Phosphates in conventional laundry soaps can cause algal blooms that negatively effect ecosystems and marine life. To shop for more eco-friendly detergents, look for labels that indicate a product is readily biodegradable and phosphate-free, and made from plant- and vegetable-based ingredients (instead of petroleum-based), which means they're healthier for the planet, from production to rinse cycle.
Choose concentrated detergent
Concentrated laundry detergents have reduced packaging and a smaller carbon footprint (because more useful product can be shipped using less space and fuel). Plus, they deliver more bang for the pound.
Make your own laundry washing detergent
Do-it-yourself laundry soap is perhaps the greenest way to go. You'll need just a handful of ingredients that can all be found at most grocery stores, and you don't need a Masters in chemical engineering to put them together. Best of all, you'll know exactly what's going in (and what you're keeping out) of your formula, and, after some practice, you can customize your mix with essential oils for a fresh fragrance. Ready to get started? Check out some recipes for liquid and powder detergents.
Wash by hand
We know what you're thinking - hand washing is time consuming, but there are some great tools that make it easier. Laundry plungers are cheap and efficient, and we love the idea of a pedal washer - exercise while you wash your laundry! If that's not your thing, you could take your clothes into the shower with you, throw in some all-purpose soap and get stomping! Hand washing really gives you a sense of how much laundry you're going through on a weekly basis so why not give it a try? You might be surprised at your weekly load.
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