Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fabric Softening After Baby!

One of the things I've missed since having Jack, is fabric softener.  (I know, its a silly thing to miss!)  We never started using it after he was born and used "free & clear" detergent.  His skin is so sensitive that if you just rub him the wrong way (literally) he gets all red!  Also since we've started using cloth diapers, softener will negatively affect the absorbency of the diapers.  This is also true for bath towels, I never used fabric softener for these.

From the scientific side of things, fabric softeners are usually made up of surfactants, or "surface active agents," that get transferred to clothing/fabric in the washer or dryer (depending on the form).  These surfactants actually form a layer of hydrophobic particles that result in feeling soft against your skin.  There are a lot of different types of surfactants out there, but the ones used for softeners should have a low toxicology profile and cause no dermal sensitization.  This is usually hard to do for babies, young children or people with allergies/sensitive skin.  You can find a lot more information on the web just through a Google search.

I just saw this blog post on how to make wool dryer balls over at the Bummis blog.  The article includes how they help soften clothes.  I can't wait to make some to see if they actually work!

1 comment:

  1. Oh how interesting. I have two plastic dryer balls that I bought from BBB a while ago that we use. I don't think they make things as soft as the artificial softeners, but they do fluff up the towels a bit!