The Dangers of Using Fabric Softeners

Fabric softeners were introduced in our lives around 1960. It was presented as a solution to make fabrics feel soft after a trip in the dryer. To prevent the clothes from being all scratchy and stiff, the researchers came up with some chemicals and later on, they added fragrance to the solution we call today “fabric softener”. Moving back to 2016, there is no good reason to use fabric softener. The “secret” chemicals that make your clothes smell good are actually allergens and endocrine disruptors. Nowadays, everybody uses fabric softeners and the truth is that we must get it out of our heads.

homemade fabric softener

Chemicals Used to Make the Fragrance

One of the great unknowns of fabric softeners are the chemicals used to make it smell good. Due to the fact that the manufacturers say these chemicals are proprietary, they are not listed on the label. Also, choosing fragrance-free products is not safe as well. Even though they have no smell, the products contain chemicals to mask the fragrance. A regular product contains between 50 – 300 different chemicals. In the industry, almost 3,000 chemicals are used to make the fragrance. These particular substances are a major contribution to indoor air pollution. This type of pollution is linked to medical conditions like allergies and asthma. Also, the environment seems to be affected by these scented chemicals. They can react with the ozone by creating secondary pollutants like formaldehyde.

Chemicals Used to Make Your Fabrics Soft

Fabric softeners contain different types of chemicals that make fabrics feel soft. Nowadays, companies use a lot of toxic chemicals just to sell their products. These chemicals in your clothes can be absorbed by your skin. Products like hand sanitizers and lotions can enhance the number of chemicals absorbed from the clothing. These chemicals can also be inhaled because of their gas release. As a result, they also contribute to indoor air pollution. Chemicals like quaternary ammonium compounds are known to cause allergies and asthma. They can also enhance the formation of cancer-causing nitrosamines. Diethanolamine interacts with the chemicals above, contributing to cancer as well. Phthalates are endocrine disruptors which mimic estrogen.

Homemade Fabric Softener

If you are not ready to give up on fabric softener, we might have the perfect solution for you. If you want your clothes to smell really good, here is a recipe for a homemade fabric softener.


  • 30 drops of essential oil (only pure essential oils)
  • 1 gallon of white vinegar

Mix the ingredients together until they blended well. After you made sure it is all even, pour the mixture in the storage container. Keep it at room temperature.

How to Use

Before using the mixture on your clothes, dilute the composition with a bit of water. For regular size loads, mix ¾ cup of water with ¼ cup of your homemade fabric softener. Pour the softener into your washing machine before the final rinse cycle.

1 comentariu

  1. They give sensative people terrible headaches!!!

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