Being “green” is arbitrary and because of that, many companies take advantage of the unsuspecting consumer. What does it truly mean for a product to be green?
Green means environmentally-friendly
The most fundamental reason a product is considered green is because it’s environmentally-friendly. This can mean many different things between different product categories– free of chemicals that harm the ecosystem, helps people reuse and recycle, uses less water and resources, and so on.
Green means healthy and safe to use
Because most chemicals that are harmful to the environment are also harmful to humans, most green products are also considered a healthier option. This is usually referring to cleaning supplies, but can also refer to foods (natural vs artificial colors and flavors) and other chemical-based products as well.
WHAT MAKES A LAUNDRY DETERGENT GREEN AND ECO-FRIENDLY?
Average laundry detergents, being chemical-based, naturally lend themselves to having greener alternatives that are free of harsh chemicals that are harmful to both humans and the environment.
Green laundry detergent means healthy and non-toxic
Green laundry detergent is usually synonymous with hypoallergenic laundry detergent. For those people who say that having a “green” laundry detergent is pointless, try telling that to David Price, who struggled with severe allergic reactions to the laundry detergent his equipment manager was using to wash jerseys and towels. This sensitivity to common household chemicals in cleaning products is even documented by WedMD, and they recommend avoiding a whole list of chemicals. Green and eco-friendly laundry detergents would be free of all these harsh chemicals that cause allergic reactions, and are actually better for your gym clothes and sports jerseys as well.
Green laundry detergent means better for the environment
Laundry detergents can be better for the environment in a number of ways. First, they can be liquid or powder. Liquid detergents, even the heavily concentrated ones, are still mostly water. Shipping a bottle of mostly water from the manufacturer, to the distributor, to the retailer, and then to the consumer is an awful waste of energy. Secondly, since washing your laundry in cold water takes up less energy, choosing a detergent that is formulated for cold-water is definitely environmentally-friendly. If you washed 4 of 5 loads of laundry with cold water, you would save 864lbs of CO2 per year, the equivalent of planting 0.37 acres of new forest! Finally, some laundry detergents are formulated with chemicals that can harm the environment– specifically phosphates and dioxanes. By eliminating those chemicals, a laundry detergent is definitely better for the environment and therefore greener.