When I do laundry I have to keep my clothing separate from the other laundry in the household. My skin is very sensitive and I can’t use fabric softener. Whether it’s the liquid kind you pour in the washing machine or the sheet type you toss in the dryer, they equally break me out in an itchy, burning rash.
Now, since I’m not a scientist down at the local fabric softener factory, I had to do a bit of research to discover just what goes into fabric softener that makes it so bad for my skin. One ingredient is benzyl acetate. This chemical has been linked to cancer of the pancreas when it is absorbed through the skin or inhaled. Both of these things happen when clothing is worn that is washed in commercial fabric softener.
Benzyl alcohol is also used in the production of fabric softeners and is known to be an irritant that contributes to upper respiratory irritation. The carcinogen and neurotoxin, chloroform, is also commonly used. So, it’s not just my skin this stuff is affecting. Fabric softener has the potential to make me very ill, chronically ill and even fatally ill.