Do you ever have those moments when you realize that you have been saying something happened 5 years ago for the last 5 years? Once upon a time, back in the day, sometime after I got rid of the dryer I was in a threaded conversation about laundry products, and I mentioned that I had quit using dryer sheets. The conversation went on, and people were mainly talking about all of the newfangled stuff they use on their clothes to make them smell this way or that, the stuff they use to dispense said smelly stuff or stuff to get rid of this grime or that stain. I lost track of the thread for a few days, and then someone commented on my comment. She said she had quit using detergent… say what? She said that she lets the water do the work. Huh. Really? How does that work? And she explained that the movement of the clothes by the agitator or around the drum in a front-loader basically works most of the dirt and stuff out of your clothes. She went on to tell me that she quit having mood swings, her husband did too. Headaches and other things that could be described as symptoms if you ever thought to put them all together just vanished after a few weeks.
By this point I was having dizzy spells quite regularly and hadn’t had much luck getting anything done about them. This had to be several years ago now, as it has been two since I was diagnosed with Vertigo again… and you know, this kind woman that happened to live in the next large city over helped more than any of the doctor’s have been able to. So anyway, I figured what could it hurt. I gave it a whirl and left my bucket of laundry detergent next to the washer. I could always go back to it if I needed to, right?
So the first week I washed the clothes. I still used my vinegar for fabric softener, and I figured it would kind of disinfect them if need be (I really don’t think I use enough for this purpose, but I still tell myself this anyway). I didn’t really notice a difference. I hadn’t been using much soap anyway because I had decreased the amount until it left little to no lint on the lint filter of the dryer. On a side note, if you are pulling out a bunch of lint with every load, use less detergent. It is essentially excess detergent and small fibers of your clothes that are being beaten out of your clothes as they tumble around in the dryer. Anyway, the next week they looked a bit dingy, and since we still had more clothes that hadn’t been washed the third week was the same. Now keep in mind we don’t own white clothes. This is more related to hard water than anything, but I do have a softener, so it shouldn’t really be a problem. The next week I noticed something happen. The clothes all of a sudden didn’t look dingy anymore. Every time I wind up dropping that line in a comment to someone I do a mental check of the clothes too… they are still not dingy. In fact, we no longer have stains much. .
So what about the other stuff? Well, I’ll tell ya. My dizzy spells dropped from every day to 2 weeks on, 2 weeks off. I quit having as many mood swings. My kids stopped having as many mood swings. And headaches. And did I mention mood swings? I never really thought about my kids as having them a whole lot. But they do. Saturdays are their detox days at this point. They come home and most of the time immediately change clothes. I really can’t handle the fragrance, so this means we can get laundry done and get it out of the house…. although I haven’t done as well at this since I started working Saturdays. I might have to work on that. Ideally I would wash those clothes separately so they don’t get the smell on everything else…. they do their laundry and reduce the fabric softener and stuff over there, but those clothes will still make the rest of the next 2 loads smell. So anyway, maybe it is just me, but it is nice to have less of the teenage moodiness… it didn’t keep it all from coming, but it is definitely less than what I have when they have been with all of the chemicals for a week. And yes, in case you were wondering, I try to avoid going anywhere on Saturdays so I don’t have to deal with it too. lol.
Wishing you less stains and maybe a few extra bucks in your wallet,
~Going Green Mom
P.S. I did eventually give away the rest of the detergent to someone that didn’t like the idea of not using any. :/ Maybe someday she will be ready.