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Since the news of the pandemic and the lockdown, one thing has become a bigger priority for all of us than it ever was – I am not talking about baking banana bread, I mean cleaning! We have been disinfecting and scrubbing everything from our hands to the surfaces in our home with extra care to be extra cautious. But did you know that conventional cleaning products like detergents, floor cleaners, dishwashers, and glass cleaners that we use can be harmful? Most cleaning agents contain synthetic chemicals and compounds like phosphates, parabens, chlorine, ammonia, and sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) that can cause damage to the eyes, skin, and even internal organs. Further, they release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are a major source of indoor air pollution too.
“Most cleaning chemicals not only pose huge environmental concerns but are also known to contain human carcinogens, asthmagens, and endocrine disruptors,” says Shaan Lalwani, founder Coco Custo. She was inspired to launch her own brand of chemical-free laundry detergent after witnessing the massive bleaching of coral reefs in Mauritius due to water pollution caused by chemicals in cleaning agents.
Natural, chemical-free cleaning products can go a long way in helping you achieve your wellness goals. Plant-based ingredients, botanical extracts, components that are safe and non-toxic both for the body as well as the environment are the way forward. “Our products are low foaming as well. So they need less water making them a sustainable and safer alternative. Apart from being a child-safe, these products are not tested on animals and are therefore cruelty-free,” says Fakhra Siddiqui, Director & Co-Founder of Mitti Se.
Now is the time to harness the power of nature and natural ingredients and cleanse your mind, body, and abode of all things toxic and harmful. Here are some options:
Coco Custo offers a safe and natural laundry detergent that is sulfate and paraben-free. Developed adhering to stringent international standards, the detergent is 100% biodegradable, totally safe for use, and suitable even for people with sensitive skin. It comes in three variants: unscented and two mildly scented versions called Spa Day and Ocean Breeze in a cardboard packaging that is completely recyclable. “Our detergent is free from petrochemicals, carcinogens, dioxins, or hormone-altering chemicals. We have also tested it against stubborn stains like turmeric and pickles that are common in Indian households,” adds Shaan.
Price: Rs. 350 per kg
Mamaearth offers a plant-based detergent that is custom made for babies and hence completely safe for the baby’s clothes, sheets and towels. It is replete with natural ingredients like lime, bio-enzymes and neem extracts and uses a plant-based surfactant. It is dermatologically tested and unlike other products in the market not loaded with bleach and foam boosters.
Mitti se has a whole range of products manufactured with minimal processing in order to maintain the natural complexity of the organic ingredients. Their products include a floor and multipurpose cleaner, laundry detergent and natural dishwash powder. Replete with essential oils of lemongrass, citronella, cedarwood, neem and pine, the floor cleaner is a perfect disinfectant and can be used to remove fungus from walls and surfaces. The laundry detergent again is made from naturally found substances like sodium carbonate, sodium bicarbonate, sodium borate, rock salt and lime essential oil while their dish wash has safe components like dried mango powder, charcoal, and neem powder. They are also sustainably packaged with very less or no plastic.
Price: Rs. 210 onwards
Soapnut (which is the dried fruit of the Ritha tree) is the key component in all Bubblenut wash products. This natural ingredient is procured from tribal communities in the Himalayas. “Soapnuts which are organic by default have an ingredient called 'Saponin' that has excellent cleaning and foaming properties. We have developed a proprietary technology for Saponin extraction from soapnuts which forms the base for all our products” says Manas Nanda, founder. Apart from being totally safe on the skin and body, Bubblenut does a great job in supporting rural communities that they source from.
Price: Rs. 299 onwards.
The Organic Story
The Organic Story’s range of products are free of chemical toxins, VOCs, and totally safe for the skin and body. Apart from laundry detergent for adult and infant clothes, their product range includes a floor, glass, bathroom and toilet cleaner. The kitchen products include a dish cleaner and kitchen cleanser. They offer a wood cleaner as well as a stain and odour remover too.
Price: Rs. 149 onwards
And if you are looking for natural products for a fragrant home, try these:
There is nothing more calming than the pleasant aroma of essential oils emanating from a diffuser. As the term indicates, these oils capture the 'essence' of the plant they are made from in terms of fragrance and flavour. The fun part is that the essential oils from One Life are based on your zodiac sign and have the goodness of frankincense oil, lemon oil, lavender oil, peppermint oil and marjoram oil. “Perfect for infusing soothing vibes in your home, these essential oils help you to embrace temporary solitude” says Gaurav Agarwal, founder.
Price: Rs. 399
All their incense sticks are hand-rolled and certified organic by Ecocert (France). They are made with natural ingredients that are absolutely safe for burning indoors without exposing yourself to respiratory issues. “The combusting ingredient is coconut charcoal powder which does not produce the unwanted black soot nor interferes with the natural aroma of the ingredients,” says Megha Asher, co-founder. They also have a Halmaddy incense stick which is known to dissolve atmospheric impurities and absorb moisture from the air apart from Citronella which is a natural insect and mosquito repellent.
Price: Rs. 195 onwards.
Song Of India
Hand-poured and handcrafted using soy wax which is toxin-free and a renewable resource, the wicks are also lead-free and made from cotton. The warm fuzzy glow of these candles coupled with the sweet fragrance of rose, jasmine, chandan, and neroli is sure to brighten up your homes and spirits! They also have anti-mosquito citronella jar and tealights.
Price: Rs. 125 onwards.
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