SugarFox03 wrote:I second the Dr. Bronner's castile soap. I use the peppermint one for my doggies. Maui went to a nutritionist when she was about a year old and he said to use that stuff as it would soothe her skin (she's all white and allergic to everything.) I have been using it ever since and I love it. Makes the pups smell minty fresh!
For regular cleaning products, has anyone tried to Clorox Anywhere spray? I bought it, but don't know what to think. I use it to clean the crates, my counter tops, and any accidents Max has on the tile. There's no smell at all, looks like water, so I hope its working! I know its not a natural product, but its supposed to be completely harmless, safe to use around food and babies.
Keep in mind that manufacturers are not required to dispose all the ingredients in the products that they make. One question I always ask myself when considering using something: Would I be comfortable, after using this product, with my dogs licking the surface that I used it on? Would I be comfortable letting my children crawl around on the floor after I used it? How about sticking their fingers in their mouths without washing their hands after touching the surface?
This is from Consumer Reports Greener Choices
: BUYING AND USING COMMERCIAL CLEANING PRODUCTS
A growing number of less-toxic commercial cleaning products are now available in stores and online. However, because manufacturers are not required to list all of their ingredients, unless they are active disinfectants or known to be potentially hazardous, it can be a challenge to find the least-toxic formulations. The following steps can help:
1. Know the warning labels. All household cleaners that contain known hazardous chemicals must carry a warning label that spells out potential risks, along with precautionary steps and first-aid instructions . In general, the more serious the safety warning on a product, the more likely that it poses risks to your health and the environment . Products labeled “Poison” or “Danger” are more toxic than those labeled “Warning” or “Caution”:
“Danger” refers to products that are corrosive, extremely flammable, highly toxic, or poisonous . Commercial toilet-bowl, oven, and drain cleaners often bear this label .
“Caution” or “Warning” are catchall terms for many other hazards, so scan for specifics, such as “Vapor harmful,” “Causes burns,” or “May be fatal or cause blindness if swallowed.”
“Irritants” refer to substances that cause injury or inflammation on contact.
“Corrosives” refer to chemicals that destroy tissue.
“Sensitizers” are ingredients that can cause allergic reactions and chronic adverse health effects that become evident only after continuing exposures.
“Chronic Health Hazards” may include effects ranging from sterility and birth defects to cancer.
2. Don’t assume that environmental and health claims are true. In many cases, manufacturers can make claims that are neither independently verified nor regulated. Among the most common claims found on cleaning products are the following:
•Nontoxic. This implies that the product will cause no harm to the consumer or environment. However, there is currently no standard definition for this term, and unless otherwise specified, there is no organization independently verifying the claim .
•Natural. Though widely found on commercial cleaning products, the term “natural” doesn’t necessarily mean much. There’s no standard definition for this claim in industry, so manufacturers can use it as they please. What’s more, just because something is “natural” doesn’t mean it’s less toxic, or non-irritating. Even cleaners that are safe enough to eat, like lemon juice, can be irritating to the eyes or skin.
•Environmentally friendly. While this label implies that the product or packaging has some kind of environmental benefit or that it causes no harm to the environment, there is currently no standard definition for the term. Unless otherwise specified, there is also no organization independently verifying this claim.
•Biodegradable. This term is somewhat meaningful, but it can be misleading. “Biodegradable,” which implies that a product or its packaging will break down in nature in a reasonably short period of time, has been only loosely defined by the federal government.
To learn more about other common environmental and health claims found on household cleaning products, visit our Eco-labels site, or click on the following links:
3. Check the ingredient list. Since manufacturers are not required to list all the ingredients in their cleaning products, unless they are active disinfectants or known to be potentially hazardous, it can be difficult to know exactly what you’re buying. And bear in mind that unlike food package labels, when a cleaning product’s ingredients are listed, the order doesn’t necessarily represent relative amounts. Companies that claim to disclose their full list of ingredients include Ecover, Trader Joe’s and Seventh Generation. Visit our Green Ratings to see how they performed.