Thursday, December 4, 2008

Greener Cleaners

As I have been re-baby-proofing this week, I have been thinking about my all the chemicals I use. Maybe I need to entirely reconsider what I allow in my home -- for the benefit of children, my family and my world. Our family is taking another important step toward being green.

First up, Air Fresheners.

I have been using Febreze air fresheners for years, especially since moving to this little apartment with two indoor cats and two kids in diapers. Here is their ingredients list:

"Odor eliminator, water, fragrance, non-flammable natural propellant, quality control ingredients. No CFC's and Contains NO Phosphates."

Well, at least they don't use CFC's (ozone-destroying) for propellant and it contains no phosphates, but do I really feel good about using something to freshen my air that has to include huge warnings about inhaling this product?

My research on commercial air fresheners turned up some interesting food for thought. Solid air fresheners contain extremely toxic chemicals like naphthalene, PDCBs and sodium bisulfate.

The sprays are normally an alcohol base with an assortment of chemicals and synthetic fragrances. They use propellants like butane and propane (although, Febreze states that their propellants are "non-flammable" and "natural"). In addition, aerosol cans are expensive to manufacture -- you pay big prices for a little bit of chemical dispensed in a cool way -- and environmentally inefficient -- a small amount of chemical for the size container that is disposed.

This has really opened my eyes to all the toxins and chemicals that my family is exposed to on a regular basis. Something needs to change...

Stay tuned to my next post. I'll be talking about the alternative air fresheners that our family is now using.


  1. Reed diffuser?

    That is what we switched to.

  2. Great idea! I had never used a reed diffuser before, but I happened to get one for Christmas. I'm looking forward to a trying it.


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