Why You Should Stop Using Dryer Sheets Right Away

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Many of us have a similar laundry routine: throw your clothes in the washing machine with some detergent and throw them in the dryer with a dryer sheet afterwards. You probably don’t give much thought to using dryer sheets. After all, they leave your clothes static-free and smelling fresh. However, dryer sheets are actually pretty bad news — and it’s a good idea to stop using them right away.

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While your dryer sheet box probably has blooming flowers or something similar on it, this is far from the truth of what they actually contain. One study examined what chemicals were coming out of dryer vents when dryer sheets were being used. The researchers found that seven hazardous air pollutants and 25 organic compounds made up these dryer emissions, including pollutants that are found spewing from vehicle tailpipes.

Here are some other frightening facts about dryer sheets for you. 44% of all scented laundry products produce at least one carcinogenic hazardous air pollutant. Synthetic laundry scent emissions can cause migraines, asthma attacks, eye and throat irritation, and contact dermatitis. Another study found that dryer sheets contain some of the highest concentrations of harmful fragrance chemicals including acetyl hexamethyl tetralin, isobornyl acetate, and phenethyl alcohol.

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Thankfully, it’s really not necessary that you use dryer sheets. To get rid of static, you can use wool dryer balls or add 1/4 cup of distilled vinegar to your washing machine’s rinse cycle. Considering the proven harmful effects of dryer sheets, these natural alternatives are way better options.