CLEAN SWAP: Dish Soap
Welcome to my weekly featured CLEAN SWAP! This week we are taking a closer look at Dish Soap.
I’m always fielding questions from clients and friends about how they can swap out some of their favorite products for safer, toxin-free options without a loss in quality, taste, or performance (depending on the product). Every week, I cover food, cosmetics, personal care, cleaning and laundry products, and even behavior, so if you enjoy these Clean Swaps, please follow me on Instagram and sign up for my 360° OF WELLNESS Newsletter (⬅️ by clicking on this link to the left) so that you never miss a new one.
Let’s talk DISH SOAP🍽
You already know the importance of choosing organic produce and pastured meats, but have you ever thought about what chemicals might be hiding in the soapy liquid you use to wash your dishes? Kinda important since you eat off them.
SO WHAT’S SO BAD ABOUT DISH SOAP? 💁♀️
Conventional dish soaps are full of toxins that can significantly impact your health (unfortunately, far more than most people realize), so it’s important to make sure that the dishes you use to cook, eat, and drink aren’t bathed and soaked in these harmful chemicals, like:
🚫 SULFATES (aka sulphates, sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, ammonium lauryl sulfate, SLS or SLES) are cleansing and foaming ingredients that give your dish detergent its foamy property and allows it to cut through grease. They have been linked with dry skin, rashes, dermatitis, and impaired hair growth. Additionally, lauryl mimics estrogen, which is especially problematic for women, and laureth often hosts a known carcinogen called dioxane. This chemical absorbs through your skin and can lead to 1,4-dioxane contamination. It’s also been known to cause rashes and allergic reactions.
🚫 FRAGRANCE (which should just be listed on the ingredients label as “hidden toxins”) is packed with dangerous, synthetic chemicals, such as phthalates, which are powerful hormone disruptors linked to pre-term births, birth defects, decreased sperm counts, reduced female fertility, and a worsening of allergy and asthma symptoms. However, this innocuous but misleading term is meant to hide hundreds of these ingredients because they are considered “trade secrets” in the eyes of the government, which seems to place the interests of the corporation above the safety of us, the consumers. Even products marketed as "fragrance-free" or "unscented" may contain fragrance along with a masking agent that prevents the brain from perceiving odor.
🚫 TRIETHANOLAMINE (TEA) is an emulsifying agent (i.e., they help keep the oil and water from separating). TEA along with cousins DEA (diethanolamine) and MEA (monoethanolamine), is often found in products that foam. These chemicals are readily absorbed into the skin and have been linked with hormone disruption, and can form cancer-causing nitrates and nitrosamines.
🚫 FORMALDEHYDE (aka quanternium-15) is added to detergents along with preservatives so that overtime it is slowly released as a preventative to bacterial contamination. Concentrations of this chemical are toxic and it is classified as a “probable human carcinogen.” Formaldehyde can cause a burning sensation in the eyes, nose and throat as well as coughing, wheezing, nausea and skin irritation.
🚫 TRICLOSAN (or any other antibacterial agent) is a synthetic chemical often added to dish detergents due to its antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties. However, it bioaccumulates in the body and has been linked to the growth of “superbugs,” endocrine disruption (i.e., it messes with hormone production), and an increased cancer risk.
🚫 PHOSPHATES soften water and prevent particles from redepositing on dishes. But they are bad for your health and the environment. They are hard to break down by ordinary wastewater processing systems and as they are carried into streams, lakes and rivers, they increase algae growth, decreasing the oxygen necessary for healthy aquatic life, and contribute to the pollution of water bodies. They have been linked with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease and coronary artery disease.
🚫CHLORINE (a.k.a. sodium dichloroisocyanurate) is extremely toxic to fish and releases chlorine into the air when it’s being used to clean your dishes. According to EWG, health concerns include respiratory effects, general systemic/organ effects, skin irritation/allergies/damage, and damage to vision.
🚫AMMONIA is extremely toxic. It has been linked to respiratory conditions and can aggravate asthma even in low concentrations. Inhalation may cause irritation of the eyes, nose, skin, throat, and respiratory tract. Furthermore, if combined with bleach to create a cleaning solution, the combination releases fumes that can cause damage to eyes, respiratory tract and skin. Excessive exposure to ammonia may also lead to liver and kidney damage. Ammonia is also toxic to the environment, contributing to smog and polluting lakes and rivers.
🚫 DYES are synthetic colorings that have been linked to learning, concentration, and behavioral issues in kids. Dyes may also cause allergic reactions and animal studies have linked them to kidney and intestinal tumors. No thank you. I don’t need my dish soap in technicolor.
READY FOR the CLEAN SWAP?🙋♀️
Check out Puracy Natural Dish Soap, Sulfate-Free Liquid Detergent. It is " 99.5% natural" and was developed by doctors. Business Insider calls it "The Best Dish Soap You Can Buy" and EWG has awarded an A grade, its highest rating for safety (of the 232 “hand washing detergents” listed on Environmental Working Group’s Healthy Cleaning Database, 58 scored an F.).
Puracy cleanses beautifully, quickly cutting through food and residue and leaving all surfaces free from smells, tastes, or residues. It even naturally softens your skin while you clean.
But most importantly, it’s one of the safest and cleanest options available. Puracy Natural Dish Soap contains no sulfates, gluten, triclosan, parabens, petrochemicals, animal by-products, toxins, dyes, perfumes, or caustic ingredients that dry out and damage your skin.
In addition, it’s naturally derived, non-toxic, hypoallergenic, vegan, gluten-free, biodegradable, and certified Cruelty-Free (which means that it’s never tested on animals). It also comes in 3 amazing scents (Organic Lemongrass is my favorite!) and even has a Natural Dish Soap for Babies. It also comes in a 64 ounce refill pouch.
Puracy Natural Dish Soap is my favorite choice choice for better health and a cleaner environment. Yes, there are some other safer options available (I’ve included links to these below), but Puracy is my absolute fave! It’s sudsy and does a great job of cleaning pans and dishes alike, and it smells heavenly! It’s not cheap compared to the toxic options, but is one of the most cost effective, safer options out there, giving you about 150+ sinks full of dishes per bottle.
Do you have a favorite clean brand?
Send me a message or leave a comment below and share what it is. If I feature it, I’ll give you credit and may even send you a free gift!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Victoria Gregory is an Integrative Nutritionist and founder of NEWTRITION NEWYOU. Her focus—whether with private clients, readers of her blog, or her followers on social media— is whole body wellness, incorporating whole-food nutrition, supplementation, exercise, toxin-free living, and mindset coaching. Victoria’s personal mission is to help make the world a healthier place, one person at a time, and she has helped thousands of people find joy and self-love through better eating habits and mindfulness. Learn more about Victoria.