Laundry day. Some of us dread it. Others find it therapeutic. Regardless of how you feel about the day you clean the clothes that have been piling up in your hamper for weeks, there is a way for you to feel better about how you wash them. Follow these easy tips to make laundry day a part of your green living routine.
Use Eco-Friendly Detergent
A few years ago, you might have had to go out of your way to find a green laundry detergent. Today, brands like Method, Mrs. Meyer’s, and Seventh Generation are available in most supermarkets. Eco-friendly laundry detergents prevent the disbursement of harsh chemicals that are bad for the environment. Most eco-friendly detergents are also easier on your clothes. Natural stain removers are available as well.
Another option is to make your own detergents in your apartment, using natural ingredients you probably already have, such as: baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, and vinegar.
Wash Only Full Loads
It’s not always practical to hold off on laundry until you have a full load of whites or colors to throw into the machine. When you can wait, however, you’ll save a lot of water and energy. You’ll also save yourself time by running fewer loads.
Exercise Temperature Control
You may be surprised to hear that the process involved in heating water for the washing machine is responsible for up to 90% of the energy used during a cycle. So, unless you’re washing clothes that are heavily soiled or in need of serious sanitizing (like sheets you’ve been sleeping in while sick), there’s little reason to use a hot or even warm water.
Ditch the Dryer Sheets
Dryer sheets are pretty popular, but eco-conscious laundry experts question their impact on the environment and our health because of the chemical residue they leave behind. If you’re really intent on using dryer sheets, try to find an eco-friendly brand. An even safer alternative is to use organic wool dryer balls, which provide the benefits of dryer sheets without the chemical disadvantages. You could even make your own dryer balls at home.
Ditch the Dryer
From an environmental standpoint, drying clothes au naturel is best. If your apartment has a balcony, you can line-dry your clothes when weather allows. For those days when rain or snow prevent outdoor drying, you can pick up a collapsible drying rack to use indoors. Because of their size, linens and towels will likely still need to be dried in the dryer, but even if you reduce your overall dryer usage by just 50 percent, you’ll noticeably reduce your energy consumption.
An eco-friendlier laundry routine is an excellent way to green up your lifestyle without having to make major life changes or expend a great deal of time, energy, or money. You’ll spare the earth some caustic chemicals, protect your clothes, and save water and energy, too!
Do you have any eco-friendly tips for laundry day? Let us know in the comments.
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