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Want to protect your family from the dangers of bleach and other toxic conventional laundry whiteners and stain removers like OxiClean, Biz, White Brite, Rit, and more? The following All Natural Ways to Whiten Laundry will teach you how to whiten, brighten, and refresh your laundry the safe and eco-friendly way with inexpensive materials you probably already have in your home!
PRO TIP: Remember to check that stains have been completely removed from clothes and linens before putting them in the dryer. Drying fabrics in the dryer sets stains and makes them extremely difficult to remove. To prevent this, air dry laundry between washes or rewash continuously to prevent mold growth until the stains are removed.
If you dry stained fabrics in the dryer, don’t despair – all may not be lost. I’ve had great luck washing set in stains over and over (and air dry between washes or wash continuously) until stains finally lift from fabrics. It’s harder to remove stains this way, but it can be done.
Best Ways to Whiten + Brighten Your Laundry without Dangerous Chemicals
Not much is safer to use than this all natural product straight from Mother Nature! Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of lemon juice to your wash along with your regular detergent to brighten clothes and remove offensive odors – all with the refreshing scent of lemon.
PRO TIP: You can also remove stains by presoaking clothes in the washer or a bucket with 1 cup of lemon juice. For really tough stains, fill a large pot with water and sliced lemons or 1 cup of lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a boil, turn off the heat, add laundry, and soak for an hour. Then, launder as usual.
SODIUM BICARBONATE (BAKING SODA)
Baking soda is about the most popular ingredient in all natural cleaning and for good reason! Baking soda is probably best known for removing odors, but it also whitens and softens fabrics when added to laundry. Add 1/2 cup of baking soda to your laundry, or make a paste of baking soda and water to apply directly to stains. If you use powdered laundry detergent, add the baking soda to the rinse cycle instead of the regular wash cycle.
SODIUM CARBONATE (WASHING SODA)
Washing soda is similar to baking soda, but it’s more alkaline, which makes it a great all natural cleaning product! Add 1/2 cup to your laundry as a detergent booster. Washing soda can cause skin irritation, so be sure to rinse the area thoroughly if you come in contact with it.
HYDROGEN PEROXIDE (3%)
Hydrogen peroxide (3%) is actually a non-chlorine bleach, which means it whitens and disinfects, but is safe and eco-friendly! Add 1/2 cup of hydrogen peroxide to your wash with your laundry detergent.
DISTILLED WHITE VINEGAR
White vinegar is another extremely popular natural product used in safe, eco-friendly cleaning. Add 1/2 to 1 cup of distilled white vinegar with your laundry detergent. You can also spray vinegar directly on tough collar stains and underarm sweat stains.
PRO TIP: Do not use vinegar on silk, acetate, and rayon clothing because it may damage these fabrics.
SODIUM BORATE (BORAX)
Borax is a natural mineral that removes stains, brightens clothes, and removes odors. Plus, if you have hard water, borax breaks down the minerals in the water, so detergent can work better. Add 1/2 cup of borax with detergent at the beginning of the wash cycle. For tough stains, fill your washer with water and 1/2 cup borax, and presoak laundry before washing.
I recommend using other natural whitening materials rather than buying dishwasher detergent just for laundry, but if this is all you have on hand, it works great on fabric as well as dishes! Use an eco-friendly brand like Nellie’s or Seventh Generation. To whiten fabrics, add 1/4 cup dishwashing detergent with your regular laundry detergent.
Hanging laundry out in the sun helps whiten fabrics – without setting stains like the dryer will – and leaves them smelling fresh.
Conventional laundry whitening products may do a good job of removing stains and keeping your white clothes and linens white, but at what cost? These All Natural Laundry Whitening Hacks whiten just as well as those toxic brands without the health risks.
I would love to hear from you!
What do you think of these All Natural Ways to Whiten Your Laundry? Please let me know what you think in the comments below and whether these methods have worked for you!