START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

Green Dry Cleaning

Green Dry Cleaning

Dry Cleaning: Some Facts, Do It Less, and Go With a Green Cleaner Instead

1. You know that sort of chemical smell or dry smell on your clothes after they’ve been dry cleaned? That’s perchloroethylene (perc) and it’s a known carcinogen.

2. All those clothes that say “Dry Clean Only”? Not so. Polyester is plastic. So is rayon. Silk is the oldest material out there. (Do you think the Chinese were dry cleaning silk during the Ming Dynasty?) Wool is infinitely hand-washable. Wash all of the above, by hand, in cold water with a very little soap. Don’t even think about putting in the dryer.

3. Dry cleaning isn’t really dry. In the perc method, your clothes are immersed in a chemical bath to clean them.

4. The new Green cleaners are not perfect, but they are better than the old dry perc cleaners; for you, for your kids, for your planet. They employ one of three other cleaning methods, using C02, silicone or hydrocarbons, as opposed to the aforementioned Perchloroethylene. It’s not perfect, but it’s a great step in the right direction.

For a more in depth analysis of conventional versus green cleaners, read this Wall Street Journal article by Gwendolyn Bounds.

No time for the whole article? Check out Gwendolyn’s recommendation for finding green cleaners in your neighborhood: “For now, the Web is the best bet for consumers hunting for a non-perc cleaner in their neighborhood. CO2 cleaners are listed at, wet-cleaners at and GreenEarth cleaners at There’s also, which lists various cleaners by method, and”

Even though the article is from 2008, the dry cleaning chemical facts in this post by Melissa Breyer are detailed and accurate. Terri Hall gives some great instruction for hand washing wool, silk and rayon in her article, and Annie B. Bond points out various toxic chemicals lurking on our clothes and in our closets and how you can get rid of them.

-Jocelyn Broyles

Photo Blaze86 |

Read more: Eco-friendly tips, Fashion, Green, Health, Home, Non-Toxic Cleaning, ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love


+ add your own
8:08AM PDT on May 23, 2012

Noted, Thanks!

12:28AM PST on Feb 6, 2012

Thanks fore the article.

4:01AM PDT on Jul 11, 2011


4:42AM PDT on May 4, 2011

Yes, I hope enough of the good.

3:05PM PDT on Apr 20, 2011

Noted with thanks.

12:11PM PDT on Apr 9, 2011

i clean my clothes on washing machines and it is good to know green dry cleaning

9:40AM PDT on Apr 4, 2011

Nature dried clothes are best

9:37AM PDT on Apr 4, 2011

I don't like dry cleaners. Their is nothing like the smell of fresh line dried clothes on the clothes line outside. I don't even use a dryer to dry clothes. At least this way is chemical free than having them dry cleaned. And I avoid buying clothes that have to be dry cleaned.

8:37AM PDT on Apr 3, 2011

By the way--Herman Cain for US president!

8:37AM PDT on Apr 3, 2011

By the way--Herman Cain for US president!

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

So Raw ??or Cooked ??prepare and leave for 40 mins then cook... Clear as mud !! thank you for info…

Great ideas if you have a yard so that you could have a garden. So many of these articles are writte…

My 18 year old female does this, in the morning she wants toast so I have to buy white bread and ea…

Great info. Could have been REALLY useful to me a couple of years ago.

Yes if you want to own a pet it costs and sometimes is really expensive! One of my dogs has gastro-e…


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.