Monday, June 8, 2009

#3 Don't Use Bleach

This is a great article to read about why you shouldn't use bleach.

I know you are thinking, "Bleach it cheap, I can get it in a store brand for $1 gallon on sale. How is not using bleach going to save me money and keep my clothes white?"

Well, the cheapest way (as I mentioned in the previous post) is the hang you clothes outside in the sun. The sun is a natural disinfectant & bleacher. That's completely free.

But if you are like me and don't have access to outdoor drying all year or you have some clothes than need help while in the wash you can use borax instead. Borax is cheap and you don't need a lot in a load, so the cost per load is similar to using bleach. Borax is color safe and can be used to brighten your colors as well. I use 2-3T of borax in a load on my front loader. 

Vingar works well too. I use about 1/2 cup of vinegar in my front loader washer. When I have clothes with a really tough stain I will use both vinegar and boarx. Vingear is inexpensive as well. It also helps to get rid of odors from clothes.

If you have access to free lemons (other the cost of lemons could be too much) you can use lemon juice to soak & whiten you clothes (if you hang them in the sun too.)

And if you must purchase a bleach alternative, Seventh Generation makes a bleach alternative. This option won't save you money. I have a bottle I have been using for almost a year. I rarely use it because I use the other methods, but I wanted to try it. It works ok, but honestly I like how borax (or borax & vinegar) works better.

Oh! And the biggest way bleach costs you money is in healthcare costs from being exposed to the toxic fumes (or if a child were to ingest some). The affects of the fumes are cumulative and vary from person to person, so there is really no way to calculate how much bleach could cost you in healthcare costs (although, I am sure someone out there might have done that and I just need to find that article), but with rising healthcare costs at both the doctor's office and in our insurance premiums, do you really want to expose yourself to these fumes when you can change to something that is free or the same cost?

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