Best Laundry Whitener
I have made a shift to living more sustainably and with that came a ton of research on which products I need to replace, especially with laundry. I was on the search for the best laundry whitener which is also natural. I found Hydrogen Peroxide to be a great option. And there are folks working on making it with the help of our sun!
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) is a bleaching agent, it helps to whiten. It is not as harsh as Chlorine Bleach and is used as the main ingredient in many color-safe or oxygen bleaches. It is created by adding an extra Oxygen (O) molecule to Water (H2O). The extra Oxygen is loosely bonded and breaks down quickly when exposed to light back into simply Air and Water. There is currently research being done with solar-powered factories in order to make this versatile chemical with just Sun, Air, and Water1!
Chlorine bleach kills bacteria and viruses fast and that is really amazing. It breaks down into water and salt2. While some say that “it’s just some salt” down the drain, I argue that too much salt is not good for anyone…or anything. Use very sparingly, specifically for disinfecting after a family member has been ill.
Using Hydrogen Peroxide with baking soda is the best laundry whitener. Be cautious not to mix with other chemicals like Borax or Vinegar as it creates toxic fumes! Get the recipe for my favorite prereat solution here.
Neither Hydrogen Peroxide or Chlorine Bleach are naturally occurring substances. They both need to be created in a factory that uses energy and water in the manufacturing process3.
I like using Hydrogen Peroxide because it works so well in such small amounts.
1. Chandler, David L. “New process could make hydrogen peroxide available in remote places.” October 24 2019. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, https://phys.org/news/2019-10-hydrogen-peroxide-remote.html. Accessed on May 8 2020.
2. Reiff PE, Fred. “Five Myths About Chlorine Bleach.” May 17 2011. Water Quality and Health Council, https://waterandhealth.org/disinfect/myths-chlorine-bleach/. Accessed May 8 2020.
3. Durham, Emily. “Producing hydrogen peroxide when, and where, it’s needed.” February 6 2020, https://engineering.cmu.edu/news-events/news/2020/02/06-hydrogen-peroxide.html. Accessed on May 8 2020.
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