The Push for Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products
Posted by: Maid in Your Hometown on: December 8, 2019

By Maid in Your Hometown House Cleaning Service

Household cleaning products are a billion-dollar industry in both Europe and the United States (A.I.SE.EU, 2016-2017, para.2; Statista, n.d., para. 1). Hence, it remains predictable that the modern customer possesses the facility to purchase an array of detergents, disinfectant, and cleansers to maintain a tidy household. For this reason, people find it difficult to conceptualize that before the onset of modern detergent production, natural items like white vinegar solved people’s daily cleaning problems (Mercola, 2018, para. 4).

 

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Non-Environtmenally Friendly Cleaning Products

Consumers continually use a variety of non-environmentally friendly cleaning products for the household task of removing dirt, dust, and grease. Nonetheless, the convenience of having a potent cleansing arsenal also has a negative component for people exposed to these products’ chemicals. Although regular use of standard cleaners affords sparkling countertops and aromatic linens, many of these products contain chemicals that damage users’ health. According to the American Lung Association (2019, pars. 2-3), the chemicals in many cleaning supplies cause symptoms that include eye and throat irritation, respiratory problems, and cancer. In addition, certain items like air fresheners, dishwashing liquid, and floor polish release dangerous gases called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) that have the potential of causing lung tissue and lung function damage (Mercola, 2018, para. 15). In response to health-safety concerns, the cleaning industry aims to ensure customers that standardized cleaning materials are beneficial for people’s health and proper handling ensures the supplies’ safe and effective usage (ChemicalSafetyFacts.org, 2019, pars. 1-4). Notwithstanding, as regular exposure to non-environmentally friendly cleaning products harms individual health, consumers need to choose natural cleaning products; research ecologically friendly brands; or learn how to make their own supplies.

The Push for Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

Over time, more people are living “greener” lives. This extends to even their cleaning products, but why? The reason for this push has been twofold. Eco-friendly cleaning products are best for both human health and the health of the planet. Aside from saving the Earth, using these products also saves money. With these driving forces, no wonder more people are jumping on board every day.

The dreaded “spring clean” should make anyone familiar with the toxic chemicals and compounds inside the cleaning agents beneath the kitchen sink. Red eyes, trouble breathing, and light-headedness are all symptoms of exposure to VOCs or volatile organic compounds. According to the American Lung Association, VOCs are “released when using cleaning supplies,” and they “contribute to chronic respiratory problems, allergic reactions, and headaches” (“Cleaning Supplies and Household Chemicals,” n.d., para 2). The word “organic” might trigger the idea of something healthy, such as organic cookies in the grocery store. However, in chemistry, the term “organic” refers to anything that has carbon in its chemical structure. VOCs are “volatile” because they readily vaporize or become a gas (“Volatile Organic Compounds’ Impact,” n.d., para 1).

Various Harmful Chemicals

Aside from the VOCs, other chemicals in these products can be harmful in a variety of different ways. For instance, some can burn your skin, be fatal if consumed (especially pets and children), and some can cause cancers and other diseases. What’s more, the adverse effects of these compounds are multiple if they are combined. Everyone knows of the dangerous repercussions of mixing bleach and ammonia. The awareness of these detrimental effects has caused a shift in public perception. To that end, governments, companies, and individuals around the world are pushing for safer products.

References
A.I.SE. (2016-2017). Market and economic data – AISE. Retrieved from https://www.aise.eu/our-industry/market-and-economic-data.aspx
American Lung Association. (2019). Cleaning supplies and household chemicals. Retrieved from https://www.lung.org/our-initiatives/healthy-air/indoor/indoor-air-pollutants/cleaning-supplies-household-chem.html
ChemicalSafetyFacts.org. (2019, January 2). Cleaning products | Uses, benefits, and chemical safety facts. Retrieved from https://www.chemicalsafetyfacts.org/cleaning-products/
Mercola, J. (2018, March 7). Exposure to cleaning products can be as bad as smoking [Web log post]. Retrieved from https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/03/07/cleaning-products-as-bad-as-smoking.aspx
Statista. (n.d.). Topic: Cleaning products industry in the U.S. Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/topics/1277/cleaning-products-industry-in-the-us/

Cleaning Supplies and Household Chemicals (n.d.). Retrieved October 1, 2019, from https://www.lung.org/our-initiatives/healthy-air/indoor/indoor-air-pollutants/cleaning-supplies-household-chem.html.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs): Your Environment, Your Health | National Library of Medicine. (n.d.). Retrieved October 1, 2019, from https://toxtown.nlm.nih.gov/chemicals-and-contaminants/volatile-organic-compounds-vocs.

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