4 Non-Toxic Laundry Detergents & Fabric Softener Alternatives

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When you stop to review the quality of your laundry detergent you may become quite surprised to learn about the hazardous chemicals and toxic ingredients in conventional and even the widely known “green” brands. When you begin to investigate and empower yourself with ways to reduce environmental toxins, you may feel overwhelmed. It is my intention in this article and with many of my blogs, to provide resources for busy moms with a way to reduce overwhelm and provided healthy, non-toxic alternatives. With these resources you can make choices for you and your family that resonate and align to your needs, while continuing to pursue your dream life and not have to spend endless hours on ewg.org reviewing ingredient lists.

While it is not my aim to highlight all of the problems with conventional and many “green” laundry detergents, it is important to provide a resource for you to review if you feel inspired. Branch Basics wrote a wonderful blog highlighting the specific ingredients that are harmful to your health. You can find that laundry awareness blog here

Once you have clarity that you are ready to upgrade your quality of life and take health-inspired action, then you’ve entered my sweet spot! Below is my current list of healthy, non-toxic, laundry detergents in order of how many ingredients are in each product. This is not a review of how well each of the products work as they all do the job. Rather, the list below provides you with some options to simplify your search when looking for a healthy laundry detergent that is safe for the whole family, including babies and sensitive skin types. 

4 Non-Toxic Laundry Detergents

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  • Organic Soap “Nuts”, 1 Ingredient. I wish I was a DIY kind of gal, but I’m a convenience shopper. However, the organic soap nut option remains simple enough that it is doable. Simply put, soap nuts are actually berries (not nuts) and the shells of the berries can be used as a laundry detergent. Soap nut laundry detergent is very gentle and can be especially great for people/babies with sensitive skin. For a resource on how to use organic soap nuts for laundry and where to purchase organic soap nuts, check out this blog from Mountain Rose Herbs. $8.50 for 1 lb. of organic soap nut shells.
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  • Branch Basics, 2 Ingredients. Oxygen Boost is simple powder product with only two non-toxic ingredients. Branch Basics Oxygen Boost is 100% natural minerals, 100% biodegradable, hypoallergenic, and is committed to maintaining the following “No” list: NO bleach, ammonia, dyes, fragrances, phosphates, phthalates, chlorine, SLS. Branch Basics Oxygen Boost is cruelty free, vegan and priced affordably. Branch Basics is founded by three women committed to spreading health education and creating pure, non-toxic, cleaning products. $10.00, 30 loads.

  • Norwex, 3 Ingredients. Ultra Power Plus is a non-toxic, highly concentrated, stain-fighting powder laundry detergent. Some key features of this detergent includes non-toxic, biodegradable ingredients and the formula is free of phosphate, sulfate, chlorine, dye, fragrance, fillers and no animal testing. This is a versatile option yet can only be purchased through a Norwex representative. I am not affiliated with Norwex, but I’m more than happy to connect you to a representative if you need a referral. $24.99, 100 loads.

  • Buckaroo Organics, 4 Ingredients. Soapberry Suds Organic Laundry Detergent is a convenient way of using the naturally occurring laundering benefits of the organic soap “nut” (which is actually a berry). This eco-friendly powder product cleans and possess a naturally occurring fabric softener capability. Buckaroo is founded by parents committed to health conscious products while applying their background in chemical engineering. They have created products committed to the planet by using sustainable resources as well as environmentally friendly product packaging. This is a great non-toxic option that comes in large and small packaging, however the large, 200 load, is great because it lasts a long time. $37.95, 200 loads or $9.95, 20 loads.

Fabric Softener Alternative

You will discover that the more pure the product the less scent you will have when you wash your clothes. If a scent equates to “clean” to you, then consider this fabric softener alternative:

Part 1. Organic Wool Dryer Balls. Place wool dryer balls (2-3 balls) in your dryer cycle and this will help pull the moisture from your clothes so your clothes dry faster while eliminating static. 

Part 2. For those who desire a “fresh scent”. Once your clothing is dry, then add a couple of drops (2 drops per ball) of pure, organic, high-quality essential oils to your dryer balls and run the dryer for ~10 minutes. This will allow the clothes to absorb the essential oil for a clean, fresh smelling scent. Some typical scents for laundering are lavender, lemon, orange or lemongrass.

This is not a comprehensive list of non-toxic alternatives, however these are my current product recommendations. I’m always exploring and I’m open to other products on the market that I have yet to discover. I am not an affiliate for any of these companies and receive no compensation. I’m just hoping this makes life a little more easeful when exploring healthier alternatives for you, your home and family!