It’s common knowledge that not all cleaning products are always safe. In fact, most contains dangerous chemicals that are just as harmful for our health as it is for the environment. There certainly isn’t lack of choices when it comes to a cleaning product, but how toxin free they are, remains to be seen. Advertisements makes sure you know more about the name of cleaning products than what it is made of. In an environment like this, it’s important to figure out which cleaning product is harmful and what isn’t.
Every time we use a cleaning product, we are exposing our body to chemicals. It can enter our body through by any means, through inhaling or even our skin can absorb them. Once we are finished with cleaning and let them flow through our drain, they end up endangering the aquatic life too.
While these are all well-known risk and practically common sense at this point, big manufacturers steadfastly refuse to do something about the harmful level of chemical content in their products. They are more focused on building their brand name than how the chemical affects the earth.
What are the Ingredients?
This is actually quite hard to decipher. Manufacturers aren’t always legally obliged to reveal the ingredients. Instances like not including what the fragrance is made of, or ingredients that are trade secrets can be easily excluded. In fact, they can use really vague terms like “cleaning agent” if they don’t want to list the name of the ingredients.
What can a consumer possibly do in this situation? Well, you can follow certain steps.
1 . Read the label thoroughly
As mentioned before, not all the ingredients are going to appear on the label. Even if it did have them all, chances are, you won’t be able to understand any of them without a PhD in chemistry. Still, the first step is to always start by paying attention to the labels. Specifically, look out for two things.
One, the warning given on the label, like not getting stuff in your eyes or inhaling it through your nose. Two, the ingredients that are written on the label. Just because it has “organic” or “eco-friendly” written on it does not always mean it is so. It’s can be a clever way of masking up foul play.
2. Check through database
There are certain healthy cleaner databases available on the web. You can run the names of the cleaning products you are currently using and check if they are safe or harmful on these websites. You can also look for names of new products that are guaranteed safe. You can also find names of ingredients that has not been reviewed yet and can steer clear from them.
What are the harmful chemicals?
While it’s impossible to list all of them, let’s take a look at some of the chemicals that can harm us and the environment.
1 . Sodium hypochlorite
You can usually find it in almost all commercial chlorine bleach product, what with it being the main component. It has harmful effects such as accelerating asthma and other respiration related disease and can irritate skin. It is also quite harmful for the marine species. There have also been speculations of it being associated with cancer.
2. Quaternary ammonium compounds
You can find them in dryer sheets which are used to coat fabrics. Quaternary ammonium compounds are of quite a variety, and sometimes they are listed with all the different names and sometimes, where the company doesn’t feel the need to disclose the ingredients, only Quaternary ammonium compounds group is mentioned. The dangers of most of these compound is that they are toxic for the aquatic environment and can cause severe burns and even damage your eyes.
Some of the names of this compounds are:
An antibacterial pesticide, Triclosan can be seen in dishwashing liquids and even some hand soaps. The damage it can cause to marine line can be long lasting and quite devastating. It is also a known endocrine disruptor, and has the possibility of causing harm to the thyroids functionality.
Almost all kinds of household cleaners has been known to carry fragrance in it. The term can include as far as 3163 chemicals. It has been suggested that on average, at least 14 hidden compounds work together to form the entirety of the fragrance label. This mixtures has association with allergies, dermatitis and reproductive problem among others. They are also known to cause problems for the respiratory system. In fact, fragrance falls among the top five allergen in the world.
There is too many other harmful chemicals out there, but it’s impossible to cover them all in one go. The question that you are left with after discovering all these harmful chemicals is what you could possibly do to prevent it. Well, for starters, you can weigh the harm caused by each product and decide if any of them are worth causing possible harm to your family or the environment.
Human and environmentally friendly product exist in plenty, but they just aren’t as popular as branded product. If you conduct an internet search or take a walk down the aisle at your supermarket, and look through new cleaning products that don’t necessarily have a huge brand associated with them, you are quite likely to find new and good ones. You can also check EWG’s database and check the ratings for the products. You can search by category and find products that are rated even a five out of five.
Alternatively, you can spare yourself all these troubles and rely on a local professional cleaning service. Cleaning services like ours, SwiftClean, have professional maids working with us. They have been part of the cleaning business for a long time and know all there is to know about environment friendly products and how to check if a cleaning product is harmful or not. We are also open for service on a daily, weekly, bi weekly and monthly basis. Contact us today for a quote!