Stop Clinging To Toxic Dryer Sheets And Use These Instead

There are quite a number of mainstream studies that have focused on diet and exercise as variables for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis. But the role that toxins play on bone health is still blatantly ignored by the Medical Establishment.

Unfortunately, we are exposed to a variety of toxins on a daily basis, many of which are in our homes. These toxins have a detrimental impact on our overall health and bones.

One often overlooked culprit are the seemingly harmless fabric softeners and dryer sheets. Laden with toxic chemicals and hefty doses of artificial fragrances, these laundry products present significant health hazards. A quick glance at the back of a popular dryer sheet reveals the ingredients: biodegradable cationic softeners and perfume. The ingredient list is certainly not specific or informative, and when you’ll read today’s article, you’ll understand why the manufacturers would rather keep it that way.

Savers know that achieving maximum bone health is a holistic process that involves diet, exercise, and the elimination of toxins, as much as possible. Today we offer you a DIY dryer sheet recipe that is safe and non-toxic. But first, let’s examine the purpose of using dryer sheets and the hidden dangers behind them.

A Brief History Of The Dryer Sheet

As with many situations in life, solving one problem often creates another. While the advent of the washing machine and clothes dryer certainly made life more convenient, another problem was created.

The washer and dryer made fabrics rougher and gave rise to the problem of static cling. Through the drying process, the rubbing together of clothing causes electrons to be released. The many electrons cling to one piece of fabric or another. When it comes to static electricity, opposites attract, and the positively charged clothes and negatively charged clothes stick together.

To combat these inconveniences, liquid fabric softeners were invented. However, until washing machines were modernized, fabric softeners often had to be added at a particular time in the wash cycle, making this a cumbersome process.

It soon became apparent that fabric softener could also be distributed on dryer sheets, thus eliminating the need for the liquid softener. Scientist Conrad J. Gaiser decided to add liquid fabric softener to a piece of cotton fabric and add it to the dryer. In 1969, Gaiser received a patent for his invention. While it took some time to work out the kinks, liquid fabric softeners lost popularity to the more convenient dryer sheets.

Initially, dryer sheets were used to decrease static. They solve the static problem by balancing out loose electrons with the positively-charged ions found in the fabric sheets. By neutralizing the negatively charged particles on the clothing, dryer sheets remove static.

The heat and moisture of the drying process soften the hardened fabric softener on the dryer sheets and allow for the coating to transfer to the fabrics. It is this coating that makes clothes feel softer to the touch.

Fragrances are also added, to give the laundry a unique, fresh scent. One of the initial challenges in adding fragrances to dryer sheets was that the high-heat produced by the dryer caused the scents to be lost via evaporation.

As a result, fragrance molecules must be selected based on their ability to withstand high heat. To help avoid the degradation of the fragrance molecule, they are typically encapsulated in cyclodextrins. The moisture from the laundry helps to break down the cyclodextrin, thus releasing the fragrances.

They Smell Great, So What Could Be Wrong?

Dryer sheets are laden with fragrances meant to attract consumers with their fresh scent, and they contain chemicals that are formulated to stay on clothes for extended periods of time. This “fragrance substantivity” is affected by temperature, humidity, and other related factors.1

The chemicals on the dryer sheets become activated when heated. As such, the moisture and heat of your body cause these chemicals to seep out of your clothing, where they are then directly absorbed by your largest organ: your skin.

These toxins make their way from your skin to your blood and the cells of your body, eventually adding burden to your liver and kidneys. Savers know that healthy bones rely on the proper functioning of the liver and kidneys.

A 2011 study published in the journal Air Quality, Atmosphere and Health, found more than 25 “volatile” air pollutants were released from scented laundry products including dryer sheets.2 Two of the culprits were the carcinogens acetaldehyde and benzene. While benzene has been shown to cause leukemia and other blood cancers, acetaldehyde has been linked to nasal and throat cancer.

These are just two of the many toxic ingredients that are present in dryer sheets. Let’s take a more in-depth look at what is lurking in those small white sheets.

Dangerous Ingredients In Dryer Sheets

While the ingredients in dryer sheets are hard to come by, some manufacturers have made their lists public. Additionally, scientists have worked to uncover some of the toxic chemicals infused into a seemingly benign piece of cloth.

Below are a few of the most toxic substances commonly found in dryer sheets. Keep in mind that this list is not comprehensive of the fragrances, of which there could be a combination of many chemicals.

Benzyl acetate: This organic compound is a known carcinogen. According to Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), if your skin comes in contact with this chemical you should immediately flush it with plenty of water, remove contaminated clothing, and wash clothing before reuse. Ironically, this compound is used in dryer sheets and ends up on your skin! It is known to cause dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and dry skin. Further, it has been found to induce liver tumors and gastric squamous neoplasms in mice.3

Benzyl alcohol: According to the MSDS, benzyl alcohol is a skin and eye irritant. Prolonged use or repeated exposure can cause contact dermatitis. The MSDS also warns that it can be toxic to the liver and central nervous system. A well-known upper respiratory tract irritant, one study concluded that there was not enough information to confirm the safety of benzyl alcohol, especially in the inhaled route.4

Ethanol and ethyl acetate: Both listed on the Environmental Protection Agencies (EPA) hazardous waste list, this chemical has been shown to cause central nervous system disorders.

Limonene: This known skin irritant has been shown affect the dermis of both animals and humans. Carcinogenic effects have also been observed in rats. This chemical has been identified as a liver toxicant, kidney toxicant, and neurotoxicant.5

Dichlorobenzene: A commonly used carcinogenic compound, it is also used to manufacture paint thinners. Dicholorobenzen is readily absorbed into the body through the lungs and the skin. Long-term exposure has an adverse effect on the kidneys, liver, and central nervous system.

Chloroform: This solvent and aromatic agent is an anesthetic, neurotoxin, and carcinogen. Listed on the EPA’s hazardous waste list, the inhalation of chloroform fumes depresses the central nervous system. It also aggravates the kidneys, heart, and liver.

Alpha-Terpineol: This chemical has been linked to disorders of the brain and nervous system. Exposure can cause loss of muscle control, headaches, and depression.

Linalool: Often used in bug repellent sprays for its toxic effect on insects, this chemical is known to cause central nervous system disorders.

How Do These Toxins Affect My Bones?

As discussed earlier, your skin is the largest organ in your body. Meant as a protective barrier to keep out harmful organisms, it is also very absorbent. That is why many toxins can break through the skin barrier.

Once the toxins pass through the skin, they enter the bloodstream. As a result, they acidify your plasma pH, which Savers know leads to bone loss. The toxins, now freely circulating through your body, are captured by the liver and kidneys. These detoxification organs remove the toxins from your body, and when they become overburdened, they do not function efficiently. As a result, they have difficulty performing other essential tasks that protect the integrity of your bones.

Our Solution: DIY Dryer Sheets

Here’s a non-toxic, bone-safe DIY dryer sheet alternative. This recipe is not only 100% natural, but it is much more cost effective than store bought alternatives.

Supplies Needed:

  • Scraps of cotton cloth
  • Sealable glass container
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • 6-10 drops of your favorite essential oil (such as lavender, lemon, or citrus)

Directions:

  1. Utilizing any old cotton clothes such as a t-shirt, crib sheet, or dish towel, cut your fabric into roughly 5 x 7 inch squares.
  2. Add approximately ½ cup of white vinegar to a sealable glass container. Infuse with 6 – 10 drops of your favorite essential oil, adjusting for desired fragrance level.
  3. Seal the jar and shake the vinegar and essential oil, ensuring the solution is mixed. Open the jar and insert your cotton cloths, shaking again.
  4. Leave the jar in your laundry room and use 2-3 cloths for each dryer load. If the cloths are too saturated, just ring a bit of liquid out. (Don’t worry, the vinegar serves as a natural softener and static reducer. It will burn off in the drying process and will not leave an acidic smell to your clothing!)

Don’t Stop At Your Laundry! Continue to Detoxify Your Body

Removing dryer sheets from your home is a good first step in reducing toxin exposure to protect your health your bones. As you become more aware of the toxins that surrounds you, you’ll want to begin removing them from your home and your life. The good news is that you can make your own bone-smart toothpaste, moisturizer, deodorant, and much more.

While the Save Our Bones Program is a powerfully effective way to ensure healthy bones, keep in mind that you probably have decades of exposure to harmful toxins that have built up over the years.

That’s where OsteoCleanse™ comes in. This all natural seven day cleanse will help you to remove the toxins from your body, restore your pH, and give your bones an opportunity to renew more efficiently.

Accelerated Bone Remodeling In Just 7 Days!

Discover how OsteoCleanse™ can flush osteoporosis drugs and other bone-damaging toxins from your system – in just seven days.

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OsteoCleanse™, The 7 Day Bone Building Accelerator, works in conjunction with the removal of toxins from your home, to ensure that you achieve optimal success!

Till next time,

References:

1Zarzo M, What is a Fresh Scent in Perfumery? Perceptual Freshness is Correlated with Substantivity. Sensors (Basel, Switzerland), 2013. 13(1), 463–483. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3574685/

2Steinemann AC, MacGregor IC, Gordon SM. Fragranced consumer products: chemicals emitted, ingredients unlisted. Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. 2011;31(3):328–333.

3Longnecker DS, Roebuck BD, Curphey TJ, MacMillan DL. Evaluation of promotion of pancreatic carcinogenesis in rats by benzyl acetate. Food Chem Toxicol. 1990 Oct;28(10):665-8. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2276694.

4Nair B, Final report on the safety assessment of Benzyl Alcohol, Benzoic Acid, and Sodium Benzoate.
Int J Toxicol. 2001;20 Suppl 3:23-50. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11766131

5Kim YW, et al. Safety evaluation and risk assessment of d-Limonene. J Toxicol Environ Health B Crit Rev. 2013;16(1):17-38. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23573938

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16 comments. Leave Yours Now →
  1. Frances Monken September 6, 2017, 5:25 am

    Warning! Modern dryers say not to put items with oil on them inside. They even warn about drying items that had oil on them before washing.

  2. Diane Koerner September 5, 2017, 2:46 pm

    Just use 1/2 cup vinegar in your wash, and this will prevent static cling in the dryer. A lot of people have chemical sensitivities and are even made sick by the strong scent of essential oils – so have a care with using these as well.

  3. Louise September 4, 2017, 3:17 pm

    I was totally amazed by the results, no static and my towels were soft and smelling nice. Can you reuse the pieces of cloth or do you have to use new ones all the time?

    • Linda September 4, 2017, 3:42 pm

      Yes, just throw the used cloths back in the jar and reuse them.

  4. Marcia Larabee September 4, 2017, 12:24 pm

    What about the use of non-scented dryer cloths? Are they safe?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 5, 2017, 9:30 am

      It depends on the ingredients used in the dryer sheet, Marcia – check the label for a list, and if it doesn’t provide one, I’d suggest contacting the company and asking.

    • Diane Martinson September 4, 2017, 2:18 pm

      That’s what I use along with the wool dryer balls, the balls don’t seem to work as well for the towels and sheets that I like really soft because of my super sensitive skin. I also throw some baking soda in the washer which I think helps too.

  5. Shirley Krampen September 4, 2017, 9:55 am

    I use wool balls in the dryer. They make everything soft and fluff up towels like I’ve never seen before. They last for years and you can put essential oils on them to add a little fragrance.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 4, 2017, 11:50 am

      That sounds like another bone-healthy option, Shirley!

  6. B September 4, 2017, 6:32 am

    Talking about absorption into the skin. What about lotions. What is a good lotion to use besides coconut oil. Or is coconut oil okay to use. I use homemade deodorant all the time. Whole lot cheaper. And it works.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 4, 2017, 9:33 am

      Coconut oil is a bone-healthy moisturizer, B. For more natural lotion alternatives, take a look at these articles:

      https://saveourbones.com/fight-dry-skin-without-harming-your-bones-with-these-3-diy-antioxidant-rich-serums/

      https://saveourbones.com/ditch-the-bone-damaging-toxic-moisturizer-and-use-this-instead/

    • Rochelle September 4, 2017, 9:01 am

      We use the 100% pure and non-toxic products from Pure Haven. You can find them at purehaven.com

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 4, 2017, 9:37 am

        Thanks for the tip, Rochelle!

        • Ann September 4, 2017, 12:25 pm

          A clothes rack in sun and breeze (or inside during rain) is even better. I haven’t used a drier since my youngest stopped using diapers, and he’s 38 yrs old now. I rarely bother with clothes pins, just drape wet things over rods of clothes rack, so it takes very little extra time over a drier. And anything that would be hung on a hanger when it comes out of drier, I hand on a hanger to dry, so that takes NO extra time. “If it lives on a hanger, it dries on a hanger.”

          • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 5, 2017, 9:32 am

            That’s certainly a bone-healthy way to dry clothes, Ann!

          • BG September 4, 2017, 8:18 pm

            I use a Sheila Maid Dryer (you can google it) that is mounted on the ceiling in my laundry room. They’ve been around for over a century and in England they’re often mounted over the top of the hearth/stove (the rising heat dries the clothes faster) or on the ceiling in a stairwell. You lower it to place your clothes and then raise it up so that they are out of the way while drying. It’s made of wooden slats, iron and rope.

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