I’m insane about cleanliness, so laundry being done well is important to me. I do not send my clothes to the launders nor do I use a launderette. I do all my washings at home on my own; either by hand or with our own washing machine. I do it not because I have some superiority complex, but basically for the following underlying reasons:
- My family has really sensitive skin; the choice of detergent and cleaning products that go into washing them has to be carefully selected.
- It’s more convenient and economical as I have many clothes made of delicate fabric and I’m just too lazy to go to and fro from the launderers – not to mention if I have a skin allergy reaction to their cleaning product the trip to the doctor will cost me even more!
- I’m just not too convinced about the level of promised cleanliness if I use those services. I mean think about it, at the back of it all, when you send your clothes to the launders what you’re basically doing is putting your clothes along with the clothes of 20 other strangers into one drum. And you have to appreciate that certain germs/bacteria/fungi are hardy little nuisance. Unless cleaned well with the appropriate attention , they not only continue to live and plague you, they also spread onto the other clothes and thus other unsuspecting victims. One such fungus has got to be the ringworm!
Now, anyone who knows me knows I’ve got 2 staple colours in my closet – blacks and whites. Of course I’ve got more black coloured clothing than whites ones but still a significant number of them. So I like my blacks to stay black and bright; not dulled and faded and I insist my whites stay white – not off white, not tinged with yellow but clear crisp white. So what do I use that ensures my laundry is both clean and colour as well as texture preserved?
Well aside from the detergent and conditioner, I also bleach. In fact I am one of the BIGGEST FANS of bleach. I use it all over the house and in almost every cleaning because nothing removes stains, dirt, grime and disinfects like bleach. But laundry bleach is different, whilst I may want it to remove dirt, stains, I don’t want it to remove the colours and I don’t really need it to ‘disinfect’ (detergents already do enough).
Bleach is a chemical that whitens, usually via oxidation. It has strong bactericidal properties, and is used for disinfecting and sterilizing although there are repercussions to irresponsible usage.
Chlorine bleach is only one among the many kinds of bleach available. The problem with it is how it’s chemically reactive. It irritates your repertory system, is potentially corrosive to skin or eyes and intoxicates the environment.
Given my need for the use of bleach, the practicality of giving it up and relying solely of vinegar and natural citric solutions simply isn’t quite visible. Therefore if you are like me, then just look for the greenest possible solution- stay clear of ‘chlorine based bleach and use ‘oxygen’ bleach (I use OXO BRITE Non-Chlorine Bleach).
I can’t say that oxygen bleach is perfect because it only works to whiten clothes or brighten colours, it does not ‘disinfect/sterilize’ (a limiting feature of Non-chlorine bleaches) but it does save the environment so it’s a fair trade off.
Alternatively if you still need to use chlorine bleach, then just cut the quantity down by half and sub it with some borax or baking soda.