Last summer my cousin-in-law Gregor asked me to suggest a good environmentally friendly laundry detergent. I could not. (Cue the sad violin music) I have been experimenting with many natural laundry soaps and have dull looking t-shirts and a linen cupboard full of faded towels to show for it. This slow search made worse by the fact that I always had to finish a product, even though it was a dud. My frugal side always wins in these situations. Dull clothes < spending money. Frugal runs in my family.
We have two busy, sporty, messy children. Did I mention they are girls? This means multiple wardrobe changes per day. I also have a sporty, messy, sweaty husband who fashions his gym workouts after Lou Ferigno. (don’t ask) Me? Well, let us just say I am in the midst of a natural deodorant experiment that is not going well. I think you have a clear understanding of my qualifications and expertise with laundry. I live laundry. I know laundry.
Here are the criteria I am looking for in a laundry detergent. It has to be safe for my family, non-toxic, phosphate free, cruelty free, environmentally responsible and effective. Many companies comply with most of that long list…however it was hard to find one that really got our clothes clean.
My sister-in-law Tig introduced me to Seventh Generation Natural 2x Concentrated Laundry Liquid during a visit this summer. It is suitable for high efficiency washers as well as standard machines. She uses the Free & Clear detergent and likes it because it is hypo allergenic as well as non-toxic and biodegradable. It is free of phosphates and optical brighteners and does a very good job. I became a fan after using it for the week. Since that visit, I tried the Seventh Generation 2x Ultra with Blue Eucalyptus and Lavender scent but have found the White Flower & Bergamot Citrus to be my pick of the bunch. I like my laundry to have a light subtle fragrance…and this one is my favourite.
I just love the company slogan quoted on all Seventh Generation Products “In our every deliberation we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations” Wise words. Marketing aside, it is worth mentioning that for over 20 years this company has been committed to manufacturing safe, environmentally responsible products for the home. In an industry where cleaning products are unregulated, Seventh Generation is one of a few companies that provide detailed product information on packaging, the web and brochures. We should question any “green” product that does not share any information about its ingredients.
Now Gregor and Cindy (a friend who recently asked) know where my laundry loyalty lies. Please try to conserve water and only run full loads. Switching your laundry soap is a good step to keeping toxic chemicals out of the environment.