Friday, 15 January 2016

The hidden dangers of scented products

Trust Me I'm a Doctor this week, had a section that looked at the higher levels of chemicals in our homes in winter. These come from cleaning products, air freshners, scented candles, plug in freshners, spray deoderant, anti-perspirant etc. If you would like to read about it, you can do so here.

We hardly burn candles except in an emergency and very rarely, to lift a smell such as having cooked with fish! Nor do we use bought in cleaning products except a glass cleaning liquid for the wood burner glass in its door. It isn't a necessity as other things can be used but we have some so use it. I use a roll on deoderant, as I used to find the aerosol kind made me cough.

If there are any smells that we think might be eminating from the carpets, we sprinkle them with bicarbonate of soda which is sprinkled on via a flour shaker or small sieve, left for several hours (or overnight), then hoovered up.

If we think smells may be air borne we use our home made spray, the recipe for which can be found here. It seems to take away most smells, indeed DDiL and DS used it to clean up toilet mess from their dogs when they were puppies.

They found that house hold plants are very good at neutralizing some of these chemicals lurking in the house. Plants are so useful but we don't have any at the moment. Anyway,  is it fair to leave plants to sort it out? Are we as a cleaning mad nation not just adding to the overall pollution? Should we be using all these products if they are causing damage to us and our environment?

Who knows but as a household, we make as many cleaning/washing products as we can. We believe it is better for us and our environments. It is also a lot cheaper. If you want to make some more beneficial products, check out the Tutorials tab above.

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

32 comments:

  1. This is so interesting. I try to make all my own. For the woodburner window I use a paraben free baby wipe. Comes off like magic! I always have some in the house for little visitors :)

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    1. Thanks for that, very interesting.

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  2. I watched that programme, it was very good. It does make you stop and think doesn't it. I too use a roll on deodorant, a perfume free one rather than an aerosol for the same reason and I have a really bad allergic reaction to the aerosols. I have to open the window after LH has been in spraying his.

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    1. Most people I know still use aerosol spray anti perspirants. Can hardly breathe if I am in the same room.

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    2. Perfume free roll on for everyone in our house. Only problem is we can't buy it locally now. However, I managed to order some online.

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    3. We haven't been able to buy aerosol deodorant/antiperspirant for years here.
      We very rarely see roll-on either it's all stick.

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    4. I meant to say stick rather than roll on.

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  3. I also read the BBc post on this. clicked on the scientific paper on it and wrote down all the names of the plants. I have spider plants and peace lilies already. I worked for 8 years in what I deemed a sick building. in the mornings you could smell the carpet degrading etc Not so strangely when I left there to go to another job, all my allergies went as well (bar dairy products but I have been like that since birth). And the Dr's just kept trying to give me steroids or more antihistamines that they have now found could be linked to Alzheimers.

    I think this is steeling me into making my own cleaning products and washing liquad . I have never done this before as I am a bit of a clutz and am scared of the chemical reaction bit when it gets hot that I am going to knock it over or do something silly.

    Good post. I hope others read it

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    1. I haven't yet made soap although I try to use as pure a soap as I can. Frugal laundry liquid is a doddle to make, maybe 10 to 15 minutes at the most.

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  4. I have lots of chemical sensitivities/allergies so try not to use any unless absolutely necessary. We bought a new mattress last year and aired it for a week but it was still giving off a terrible smell. Within 3 nights of sleeping on it I was really ill. Fortunately, we had kept the old mattress and put it back on the bed. The company took the old mattress away saying that the mattress hadn't been given time to 'air off' the fire retardent before it had been packed. I requested the display mattress as it should have been aired properly but I can't bear the smell of that either. We need a new mattress but I'm scared to waste more money in case I have the same reaction.

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    1. Whist I can understand modern fire safety standards on upholstery, it can be a right minefield can't it?

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    2. Wool mattresses are chemical free - they are not the cheapest, but may be the answer. I am chemical sensitive myself, and sympathise! Dx

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    3. Thanks Deb. I'll look into this. Any ideas as to where I could purchase one? The mattress we ordered was cotton, silk and wool so I thought we'd be ok, not realising it was drenched in fire retardant.

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    4. I live in the US, so don't know if this is available to you or not. We bought a natural latex mattress but had to have a prescription from a doctor to get it. I was able to get the prescription from a chiropractor. I know that organic mattresses are also sold. Look online, and best of luck to you in finding a new, non-toxic mattress!

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  5. Touch wood, I've only had one slight cold since I switched to using natural, mostly home made products. It's scary just how many chemicals people put into their environment. Surely the future generations will be suffering from more allergies etc?!

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    1. Also, the comment above about mattresses let alone other upholstery! Seems you can be dammed if you do and dammed if you don't in some cases.

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  6. I use candles a lot. Make my own using soyta wax and ethically sourced essential oils

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    1. Lovely, at least you know what is in them.

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  7. .......that should be soya wax!

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    1. Someone posted on Facebook this week a warning about using Lenor Unstoppables in wax burners as they release harmful gases along with the scent. The product is designed to go into a washing machine and not on a burner. Someone and decided to try it in a burner and just because it worked others have tried. Dangerous!

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    2. I saw that too. I make my own cleaning stuff too because of all the added chemicals but didn't realise quite how toxic the manufactured cleaning products etc were until I read the article. How many people open their windows daily? Neighbours think we are mad because the windows get opened everyday, especially bedroom ones which stay open all day...not wide! Downstairs ones opened only for a couple of hours in the morning in the cold weather.

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    3. We open most of our windows daily as well.

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  8. Good grief, that could have been very dangerous after some time.

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  9. I stopped using deodorant about twenty years ago. Neither my mother nor my grandmother ever used it and never seemed to have body odor. It has been around since the 1800s but only really took off in the 50s. Try not using it for a couple of weeks, see if you miss it.
    I dont use fabric softener or hair conditioner but got fed up with homemade laundry detergent and went back to Tide but as I only do two loads of laundry a week it lasts a long time.
    I do make all my own soaps and balms and usually leave them fragrance-free.
    Dont have any candles but do check my torch batteries now and again and do have a hurricane lamp.

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    1. Unfortunately, not using anything doesn't work for me, I've tried not using any before.

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    2. The crystal rock deodorant works very well

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  10. The best room scent is fresh air! On a fine day, even if it's cold, just open windows for about ten minutes. Anyone can withstand the cold for that length of time and it really freshens the house. I don't buy scented candles - it's burning money, literally. I keep candles only in case of a power cut, but then I'm of a generation who didn't waste money on scented things, only proper scent to spray onto ourselves. We seem to be fixated with ridding our homes of natural smells these days which, for the most part, is quite unnecessary.
    Margaret P

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  11. I remember my mother would cook fish and would put a little water in a pan with a little vanilla flavoring and simmer. Not only did it take away the fish smell the house smelled lovely.

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    1. Might try that another time, thank you.

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  12. I found the best thing ever for cleaning the glass on the wood burner was a loofah and some ash from the fire. Dampen the loofah slightly so the ash sticks to the loofah and give the door a scrub. It used to get the door sparkly clean, better than any bought products. Even better, we used to grow our own loofahs!
    Claire@Homesweethome2015.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks for that, how are you settling back into blighty?

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