It is all too easy to simply pour detergents and other cleaners straight from the pack into the machine or bucket. But, by doing so we really have no idea how much of anything we are using. Even the greenest of green cleaning product has some effect on the planet and our purses. Your laundry detergent may well be an organic cleaner but it still took resources to create, packaging to hold and transportation to get to you.
Spend a few dollars on some measuring cups and spoons and save many dollars over your lifetime of housework! Guessing volumes always leads to wastage, so one of the top ways to make your cleaning Eco friendly is to become more frugal and start measuring the amount of all the cleaners you use.
Another useful Eco cleaning tip is to stop believing what the manufacturers tell us. Laundry detergent is a particularly good example. We are always told to use much more than we need. The makers want us to be happy with the results so have to account for the worst case scenario.
But, how much of our laundry is really that dirty? The odd wash will be full of grass-stains and other problematic things for our laundry detergent to deal with. But most of the laundry is just ‘worn’, maybe with the odd bit of dirt, but mostly just a bit stale and in need of a freshen up.
The really green approach would be to wash clothes far less often and it is true that a cashmere sweater in need of dry cleaning will often be perfectly fine after just being hung outside in the fresh air for a day. All that sun and wind will freshen that sweater up easily. But, realistically, most of us will not stop doing the laundry as often as we do. However for all the ‘ordinary’ loads of washing where there are no tough stains to speak of, try halving the volume of laundry detergent used. You will see little or no difference in the results and you’ll save a little pollution and a lot of your hard earned cash.
Any cleaner becomes more of a simple green cleaner if you use less of it. Beware, this method of Eco friendly cleaning can become addictive. I started halving the volume of detergent for most washes, but then used less and less. For many loads a squirt of vinegar in the rinse cycle is really all you need. Those washing machines are tough and really get the water working to clean up your laundry pretty well, all on their own!
Now I use Eco Wash Balls which ionise the water making dirt easier to dislodge and remove. Ionisers are one of the main active components of laundry detergents. I use this one benefit without any of the polluting disadvantages of detergents. No more detergent for me at all. But, if you do not want to go ‘cold turkey’ just use half the amount in all but the dirtiest loads of washing and save yourself a bundle!