Whitening without bleach

Jan 15, 2008
Whitening without bleach

I'm the laundry gal of the house, and since I don't mind doing it, when I'm doing clothes or have time to experiment, I always try out new ways to improve the wash, especially by taking advantage of at-home products which work twice as good as many leading laundry products who advertise the same thing and cost more.

Since my grandfather likes his white towels and shirts extra blemish-free white (I as well), I dislike using loads of bleach since eventually, it eats away at the fibers in your clothes, even if you dilute it. Even chlorine-free bleach eats away at fibers with dilution.

I've found that Dawn concentrated dish soap does wonders on whites in cold or hot water. I'm not sure what it is in it (I haven't really read the ingredients), but it's much safer to use than bleach and plus, it smells better. Normally, you don't have to dilute it, and plus, it's so concentrated you don't need to use half-a-gallon to get the results you want. I just used some on some white tee-shirts in ice-cold water today and voila - they came out whiter than my bleached drawing paper. No laundry detergent either. Just the soap.

Just be careful of foaming, especially if you own a HE (High-Efficiency) washer as those are notorious for over-foaming. Cold wash + a cold rinse usually keeps down the foaming and is easier to rinse out than a hot wash + a cold rinse. If you have an HE machine, I suggest diluting it in warm water, shake it up and then add it to the dispenser. If you have a regular top load washer with a large tub, you shouldn't have any problems. If you still have problems with foaming, add a little salt, baking soda, or fabric softener and the problem should be solved.