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Conventional dish washing detergents and soap typically score “F’s” on the Environmental Working Group’s report card. Scores range from A to F. Just like grade school, A is the highest score and F is the lowest score.
Why are most dish detergents scoring F’s?
Conventional dish washing detergents and soaps are often laden with harsh and toxic ingredients. Ingredients that can harm you and the environment. These harmful ingredients include:
Polyethylene Glycol (PEG): used as a moisturizer, solvent and processing aid. PEGs are at risk for being contaminated with carcinogenic 1,4-dioxane. Health concerns: skin irritation and carcinogenic effects from contamination. EWG rating 3.
- Hydrozincite: used as an etching inhibitor in automatic dish detergents. Hydrozincite is a naturally occurring mineral known as zinc bloom. Health concerns: skin and eye irritant. Very toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects. 3 EWG rating F.
- Alcohol Alkoxylate: used as an emulsifier, wetting agent, and antifoam agent. Health concerns: skin irritant and considered highly toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects. 2 EWG rating not available.
- Perfumes: can contain an array of ingredients ranging from plant oils to contaminated and carcinogenic synthetics. Here is a list of Proctor and Gamble’s fragrances.
Finding an effective automatic dish washing detergent with natural ingredients is no easy task. Today, I’m sharing my current favorite dish detergent brand.
Better Life Naturally Crumb-Crushing Dishwasher Gel
- Purified Water
- Potassium Cocoate: a natural liquid surfactant (detergent) derived from the potassium salt of coconut fatty acid. EWG rating 1.
- Sodium Citrate: pH balancer, water softener. EWG rating 1.
- Coco Glucoside: A natural surfactant (detergent) derived from coconut oil. EWG rating 1.
- Sodium Silicate: a “water glass ” or “liquid glass” sealant made by combining water and soda ash (sodium carbonate) at a high temperature. Health concerns: Diluted solutions of sodium silicate are strong alkaline irritants and solid sodium silicate is corrosive. Exposure to alkaline corrosives could result in severe burns. EWG rating 3.
- Decyl Glucoside: Glucose-based surfactant derived from corn and coconuts. It is considered biodegradable and gentle enough for delicate skins of fruits and vegetables (its often used in fruit and vegetable cleanser). EWG rating 1.
- Quillaja Saponaria Bark (Soap Bark) Extract: cleaning agent derived from Soap Bark. EWG rating 1.
- Glycerin (vegetable): conditioning agent derived from vegetable oil. EWG rating 1.
- Sodium Carbonate (soda ash): mineral cleaning agent and water softener. Considered harmful in large quantities. EWG rating 1.
- Xanthan Gum: binding agent and emulsifier made from fermented sugars and bacteria. EWG rating 1.
- Sorbitan Oleate: emulsifier and cleaning agent derived from corn sugars. EPA Safer Choice recognizes Sorbitan Oleate of low concern based on experimental and modeled data. 1 EWG rating 1.
- Enzyme Blend: cleaning agents that break down proteins and starches. EWG rating not available.
- Citric acid: Weak, organic acid found in citrus fruits. Citric acid is used as a natural antioxidant, preservative, pH adjuster, and fragrance. EWG rating 2.
The ingredients are clean, but does it work?
You bet! It even passes my “peanut butter” test; meaning, it gets left over peanut butter off spoons and knives. Seeing leftover peanut butter (or any food) on my dishes is my #1 pet peeve. If you want to see more reviews, head on over to Better Life’s Naturally Crumb-Crushing Dish Gel product page.
Where can I buy it?
I purchase my Better Life Naturally Crumb-Crushing Dish Gel at my local natural foods store but you can also buy directly from Better Life or look up a retailer near you. Don’t forget to like Better Life | Clean Happens on Facebook for the occasional sale and coupon code!
For more of my approved products, click here.
Poly-ether-what? Check out my Ingredients Defined page.
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- https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/9920342#section=Toxicity ↩