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Dirty Secrets: Do You Know What’s In Your Cleaning Products?

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Dirty Secrets Testing Results — Clorox, Tide, Bounce, Lysol and more…

The WVE fact sheet on the testing results provides a breakdown of the chemicals that were detected in each of the products and indicates the corresponding health concern.

The products that included carcinogens (cancer risk), include:

  • Clorox Clean-Up Cleaner with Bleach
  • Tide Original Scent
  • Tide Free & Gentle (Scent Free)
  • Febreze Air Effects Spring & Renewal
  • Simple Green Naturals Multi-Surface Care Lemon Verbana

The products that were flagged as potentially causing pregnancy complications, reproductive harm, hormone disruption or neurodevelopment problems include:

  • Original Pine-Sol
  • Febreze Air Effects Spring & Renewal
  • Glade Tough Odor Solutions w/Oust Refreshing Citrus Air Sanitizer
  • Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner Non-Toxic Biodegradable
  • Simple Green Naturals Multi-Surface Care Lemon Verbena

The vast majority of the products tested included undeclared allergens that can cause skin rashes, irritation of the eyes, nose and throat, headaches, chronic dermatitis, breathing difficulties and asthma.  These products include brands such as Clorox, Green Works, Pine-Sol, Tide, Bounce, Febreze, Lysol, Air Wick, Glade, Pledge, Windex, and Simple Green.

The fact that products pretending to be gentle, green or natural contain these types of chemicals and allergens is particularly disturbing. Not only are these companies hiding what is in their products (by not listing the ingredients), but they are also pretending that their products are especially safe.  The only product tested that did not have any unlisted toxic chemicals or allergens is Pledge Multi-Surface Everyday Cleaner Fragrance Free Hypoallergenic.

For a full list of the products tested, chemicals found, and related health concerns, see the Dirty Secrets report.

Keep reading to find out what you can do to protect yourself and your family and to help get rid of these hidden chemicals….

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Photo credit: All images provided by Women's Voices for the Earth

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1:24PM PDT on Mar 21, 2012


9:55PM PST on Dec 19, 2011


10:55PM PST on Dec 12, 2011

Thanks for this good information.

12:59PM PST on Nov 24, 2011


2:27PM PST on Nov 21, 2011

Note: Nellie's washing soda was always in a cardboard box and was the safest product for laundry. Now, Nellie's comes in a "HE" labelled heavy plastic bag, and includes other chemicals to make it qualify for the new front load washers that need "HE" laundry detergents. Arrgghh! Even Nellie!

11:52AM PST on Nov 21, 2011

I've used vinegar as long as I've been keeping house, as my mother and grandmother did before me, and a simple biodegradable no problems here.

2:36AM PST on Nov 19, 2011

Vinegar, peroxide and bon ami are my cleaning agents, and scent free biodegradable dish soap and laundry soap from Seventh Generation. I have chemical sensitivities, therefore rid myself of this horrible stuff they advertise as "safe" a loooong time ago. They should be illegal.

9:49PM PST on Nov 18, 2011

Thanks for the article.

9:37PM PST on Nov 18, 2011

Although I knew some of this, I thought that by law, companies Had to List All Ingredients....
silly me. I knew about some of the Simple Green products awhile ago, but not about
the Tide "Free and Clear". How do they get away with being deceptive?? :(

2:48PM PST on Nov 18, 2011

Yes I do know what is in these nasty concoctions which is why I stopped using them years ago. I also edit my food labels. We need to encourage our government to hold corporations to the truth in all labelling. I do so via writing the FDA and by supporting Center for Science in the Public Interest.

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