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Laundry is a chore, but it doesn’t have to be so bad for the environment. As you wash, dry, fold, and hang, these eco-friendly laundry products will make you feel better about laundry day. After all, the average American family will wash and dry 8-10 loads of laundry… each week!
Even if you rent or it’s not in your budget to upgrade appliances, you can make some small, affordable changes. Let’s explore some sustainable laundry products and learn how to reduce waste one load at a time.
Related: How to Shop Sustainably on Amazon
Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergent
Traditional laundry detergent is often packaged in single-use plastic containers, which is wasteful and harmful to the environment. Eco-friendly laundry detergent comes in various forms that are more sustainable and better for the planet. These are a few of your options.
Laundry Detergent Eco-Strips
Laundry detergent strips are a zero-waste, plastic-free alternative to traditional laundry detergent. They’re lightweight and take up less storage space, making them ideal for small apartments, people who want to minimize clutter, or those who want to travel with their favorite products when staying in a rental.
Toss a strip into the washing machine with your clothes, and it will dissolve as it gets to work.
EPA Safer Choice Liquid Detergent
If you prefer a liquid detergent, the EPA Safer Choice label indicates a more eco-friendly product. The Safer Choice label means the product has been rigorously tested and meets EPA standards for safety and sustainability. Look for laundry detergents with the Safer Choice label to reduce your environmental impact.
Laundry Soap Powder
Laundry soap powder is another eco-friendly alternative to traditional laundry detergent, as it’s more effective in shipping space and weight from stores to your home. It’s typically packaged in cardboard boxes or paper bags, making it more environmentally friendly than plastic containers.
Laundry soap powder is also made from natural ingredients free from harsh chemicals, making it a safer option for people with sensitive skin.
Plastic-Free Detergent Tablets
Plastic-free detergent tablets are another great eco-friendly option. Made from plant-based ingredients, these plastic-free detergent tablets are free from harsh chemicals — gentler on the skin and environment. All those tablets add up!
Toss a tablet in with your clothes just like you would with other tablets.
Bed Sheet Detangler
This bed sheet detangler prevents sheets from tangling, twisting, and balling up in the wash. It helps loads come out cleaner, keeps the washer balanced, and reduces drying time — with fewer wrinkles and much less frustration. It also reduces the number of wet items trapped in sheets, saving you time and energy.
Wool Dryer Balls
Dryer sheets are a common laundry product that often contains harsh chemicals and come in single-use packaging. Plus, added fragrances can irritate some people’s skin. Wool dryer balls are a more sustainable alternative that can be reused many times.
Wool dryer balls can also help reduce drying time, which saves energy and money.
Wall-Mounted Hanging Rack
This space-saving clothes rack can be folded against the wall when not in use, perfect for laundry rooms, a bedroom, or even a balcony for fresh air. When extended, it’s capable of holding a lot of clothes for a machine-free drying alternative.
FAQ: How to Reduce Your Environmental Impact When Doing Laundry
How can I reduce water usage when doing laundry?
Modern washers use 2/3 less water than top-load machines of the past, but that’s still about 13 gallons per load. If you have an older machine and can replace it, consider investing in a high-efficiency washing machine.
It’s still important to reduce water usage, which you can do by washing full loads of laundry instead of smaller loads.
How can I reduce energy usage when doing laundry?
Your dryer is a big energy waste. To reduce this impact, consider air-drying your clothes instead. You can also invest in a high-efficiency dryer that uses less energy per load and throw in sheet detanglers or wool dryer balls.
How can I reduce waste when doing laundry?
First, look for opportunities to reduce wash and dry time by using cold water and hanging clothes to dry. Another option to reduce waste when doing laundry is by using eco-friendly laundry products like green laundry liquid alternatives and wool dryer balls.
Consider evaluating whether you wash certain items more often than necessary.
Are laundry strips eco-friendly?
Yes, laundry strips are eco-friendly. They are a zero-waste, plastic, and chemical-free alternative to traditional laundry detergent. They’re also biodegradable in cold or hot water while working, just as well as liquid detergents.
Put a Spin Cycle on Your Routine
Using sustainable laundry products is a low-cost way to reduce environmental impact and work toward a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Throw in a few small changes to your laundry routine, and you can make a big difference in the planet’s health and your wallet.
Ready to brush up on more sustainability swaps? Consider switching to eco-friendly dental products, from biodegradable floss and toothpaste to bamboo toothbrushes.
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