Itchy? Blotchy? Maybe it’s time to detox your clothing

Itchy? Blotchy? Maybe it’s time to detox your clothing

14th Feb 2020

Are you (or anyone in your family) a bit…itchy? Do you find yourself scratching various parts of your body? Is it driving you mad?

It’s likely you’re having a reaction to your laundry detergent, and it’s easy to fix.

Contact dermatitis

Irritant contact dermatitis is caused when your skin comes in contact with an irritant, such as soaps. It becomes obvious if you develop a rash on one or more areas of your body. It could be a few things – your perfume or skincare, for example.

What are the signs that your laundry detergent could be causing you problems? You might have developed itchy red bumps on your ankles where your socks hug the skin, or in your armpit or groin area. Other signs that it’s your detergent: if you’re a side sleeper, your face becomes irritated after you put freshly washed pillowcases on.

With irritant contact dermatitis, you most likely aren’t allergic to anything in your detergent – rather, there’s an irritating substance in the laundry detergent you use – most likely a surfactant – that is damaging the top layer of your skin.

Smell isn’t everything

Ahhhh… your detergent smells fresh and dewy. But wait – the chances are, it’s a synthetic fragrance, and it contains some pretty horrible chemicals. Some people are very sensitive to artificial fragrances. Most synthetic fragrances are made from petrochemicals. Some of these are highly toxic – not something you want next to you or your family’s skin.

What most laundry powder manufacturers don’t want you to know

Fillers, in particular, are a nasty little manufacturer’s secret. They have absolutely no cleaning capabilities - they’re just cheap ‘bulking’ agents that make it look like you’re getting more detergent than you really are. And here’s the thing – they don’t dissolve. Because they are granular in nature, the particles lodge into your clothes and turn your clothes into sandpaper.

And then there are surfactants

Most detergents contain some type of surface-acting agent (surfactant). They are responsible for the fluffy, white bubbles you see during the wash cycle. They also loosen the dirt and oil particles from your clothes, so they can be washed away. Unfortunately, many of these surfactants are very harsh and can irritate people with sensitive skin. Furthermore, if enough of these surfactants find their way into the waterways, they can have poisonous effects in all types of aquatic life.

What do I do?

Before you panic, there is a simple solution – change your laundry detergent, of course! But to what?

Obviously, you’ll now be looking for a laundry powder that’s free of all of the above. If you like a hint of clean, fresh smell, look for a toxin-free laundry detergent that uses essential oils as a fragrance.

Fillers are unnecessary. They don’t contribute one bit to cleaning your clothes, so it will be absolutely no loss to your wash (and because many can corrode your machine, cutting out the fillers help to extend their working life).

But surfactants. They’re what loosen the dirt from the clothes. We need them! Relax. There are many other natural ingredients that can do the same job just as well.

But does it clean my clothes?

That pile of laundry isn’t going to clean itself. You still want – no, you need – a detergent that can tackle even the most stubborn stains.

Our team at SimplyClean have spent years perfecting a range of eco-friendly laundry powder and liquids that are free of all fillers, synthetic fragrances and surfactants – thus, sensitiser free.

Another great thing is that a little goes a long way – no ‘bulking up’ the powder, just strong, pure, powerful ingredients. You don’t need to use as much as other laundry powders. That’s not only good for your skin, but it’s good for the environment as well as your budget.

The SimplyClean range includes lemon myrtle and Australian eucalyptus laundry detergents that use only pure essential oils. And a fragrance free, oxy-action stain remover powder for pre-soak or an in-wash boost.

Importantly, the entire range will clean your laundry as well as any other detergent on the market, while making sure your family isn’t exposed to toxins or irritants next to their skin.  

We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Australians and Traditional Custodians of the lands where we live, learn and work.