Do people actually do this? What are the benefits? Which oils are commonly used to scent our clothing? Is it safe? Is it harmful to my washer and dryer? If you are looking to go all natural in the laundry department, we are here to answer your questions. When I am shopping for all natural, nontoxic laundry products, I often find that most are unscented and quite honestly, boring. Synthetic fragrances can have such a negative impact on our bodies, and when they are incorporated into our detergents and other laundry products- they are clinging onto our skin 24/7. According to The Essential Family, scented products are one of the leading producers of indoor air pollution- yikes.
Essential oils are the perfect solution to this problem! It is important to be careful using the oils though, especially if you or a family member has sensitive skin. The most popular oils used in homemade laundry products are Tea Tree, Lemon, Orange, Lime, Lavender, Eucalyptus, Lemongrass and Rosemary. Choose your favorite or even create a blend based on your preferences! It is not surprising that citrus oils top the list here as they provide the freshest and cleanest smelling aromas. Citrus oils are also known to be helpful in removing dirt and grime due to their anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Below are some safe ways to incorporate essential oils into your laundry:
Wool Dryer Balls: A few drops of your favorite oil can be added to reusable wool dryer balls. Be sure to dry on low heat as a higher heat can destroy gentle aromas. Personally, I would dry my clothes normally, then add the dryer balls in on low heat to fluff them and add the natural scent. Dryer balls with essential oils are also such a healthy and cheap alternative to constantly purchasing toxic dryer sheets and fabric softeners. Feel free to test different oils on the dryer balls until you get your perfect blend! One Essential Community also loves dryer balls as a way of cutting down drying time and reducing static. Try our oils with Public Goods dryer balls!
Adding a blend to your non-toxic detergent: Add 1-3 drops of your favorite essential oil to your non scented detergent or add directly into washer (works for both top and front load). You can always do a smell test at the end to decide if you want to add/reduce until you get a blend that is perfect for you. In that instance I would suggest adding directly to your washer and not the detergent.
Some of my favorite blends are:
Bergamot and Lavender (Young Living inspired)
Lemon and Tea Tree
Peppermint, Tea Tree and Lavender
Lemongrass and Eucalyptus
We are constantly trying to re-invent normal tasks and hobbies we do daily, in a non-toxic fashion. Unfortunately, we sometimes are exposing ourselves to harmful toxins and chemicals without even knowing. Let us know in the comments below if you have ever tried adding oils to liven up your laundry and what your favorite blends are!