Sustainable Living | Jan 16, 2020 9:18:08 AM

The Dangers of Chemicals & the Cleaning Industry

“If you don’t have your health you don’t have anything.”

This old adage is always relevant. It’s why we exercise, eat well and spend time serving our bodies and souls. No matter how healthy we attempt to live the reality is there are thousands of harmful toxins right under our nose we’re blind to.

The chemical industry is joked as being akin to the courts, innocent until proven guilty. New chemicals are made daily and there are very few checks and balances on their creation, let alone regulations for product disclosure. Aptly named “Greenwashing”, companies will make extravagant claims about environmental responsibility and sustainability, but the marketing does not stand up to scrutiny. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), an independent toxic chemical watchdog association, the majority of cleaning products in North America contain thousands of industrial chemicals, including formaldehyde and 1,4-Dioxane, both known carcinogens.

Formaldehyde doesn’t need much of an introduction, well known as a preservative for dead tissue, we do not want it anywhere near our home, pets or children. 1,4-Dioxane is a little more of an unknown. It is one of the silent poisons in North America. Used as solvent for a variety of practical applications, the state of California lists it as a known carcinogen. It also leads to kidney and liver complications, central nervous system damage, respiratory problems and irritation of the eyes. A 2009 study by the Campaign for Safe cosmetics discovered that Dioxane was present in 2/3 of all bath products tested, it is not currently being tested in home cleaning products by the EPA, and 7 million people in over 26 states are exposed to an unsafe level of 1,4-Dioxane in their tap water.


Marketing claims are unregulated, and the only products that meet stringent, comprehensive, specific health and environmental standards are verified by organizations like Eco-Cert. Protecting yourself and your family is fast and easy. The EWG website and mobile app list thousands of products audited and ranked on an A to F scale for, the transparency, toxicity, and effects of ingredients. Only 4.8% of all bathroom cleaning products, 12.8% of all dish cleaning products, and 5.9% of all Kitchen Cleaning products received an A grade.

Here are some tips going forward

  1. Always check the EWG website when purchasing anything manufactured. They’re fair, balanced and independently funded so there’s no worry about lobbyist influence
  2. Companies will not list these ingredients on their product labels. So even if you think they’re safe, always double check.
  3. Some companies will inform you that they have “stripped” the 1,4-Dioxane from their products. This process will never fully remove the chemical
  4. Avoid all products that contain polyethylene, polyethylene glycol, polyoxyethyelene, polyoxynolethylene, or anything that ends with –eth and –oxynol. These chemicals can create 1,4-Dioxane as a byproduct.
  5. AspenClean products are Eco-Cert and have received an “A” grade from the EWG for transparency, and the natural, green ingredients. Purchase natural cleaning products that are green, clean and all natural at our website.

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