Home > Why Green Cleaning > 8 Chemical Offenders

This chart lists the most common toxic chemicals you definitely don’t want in your home!

ChemicalFound InHealth Effects
AntibacterialsCleaning products; personal care products including toothpaste, hand sanitizers, mouthwash, and moreAntibacterial products contribute to the rise of resistant bacteria. Triclosan, the most common antibacterial agent is actually classified as a pesticide…when exposed to sunlight and chlorinated water, it can convert to dioxin, a known carcinogen.
Artificial FragranceAny cleaning product or personal care product that lists “fragrance” or “parfum” as an ingredient Most fragrances contain phthalates, a group of chemicals thought to be a reproductive toxin.Note: consumers can never know exactly what’s in synthetic fragrances because they’re often considered proprietary information or “trade secrets.”
PhosphateAlmost all automatic dishwashing detergents and some all-purpose cleanersConsidered a higher risk to the environment than to human health; phosphates pollute waterways and kill off fish and vegetation
Sodium HydroxideDrain, metal and oven cleaners; known also as lye, caustic soda, white caustic and soda lyeSevere damage to eyes, skin, and mucous membranes as well as the digestive system.
APEs (alkylphenol ethoxylates)A surfactant commonly used in household products including laundry detergents, disinfectants, all-purpose cleaners and hard surface cleanersSuspected long-term endocrine disruptors; linked to the stimulation of breast cancer cell growth; negative eco effects include reducing reproduction and survival rates of salmon and other types of fish
DEA (diethanolamines) and TEA (triethanolaminesSurfactants found in all-purpose cleaners, hand dishwashing liquids, detergents, stain removers, and personal care productsCarcinogenic; skin, yey and respiratory irritants; slow to biodegrade in the environment.
Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulfate (SLS and SLFS)A surfactant found in any type of product that produces lather; especially prevalent in personal care products.Can cause severe skin and eye irritation and have been linked to abnormal eye development in children; lethal to fish at low levels of exposure.
Butyl Cellosolve (others like it include ethyl cellosolve, ethylene glycol, petroleum distillates, petroleum hydrocarbons, hexane, toluene, benzene, xylene, and perchloroethylene (PERC)Synthetic solvent found in all-purpose, glass, and abrasive cleaners.  It’s also found in auto products, floor polish, inks, leather goods, paint thinners, pesticides and home furnishings.Known neurotoxin; suspected blood, kidney and liver toxin; endocrine disruptor; immediate toxic effects include eye, nose, throat and lung-tissue irritation.


Start reading labels! A savvy consumer is a healthier consumer.


We’ve Got Your Covered
Harmony Maids Green Harmony Cleaning is free of the above ‘bad guys,’ providing a healthy clean that lets you breathe easy.


Call 888-300-7715 to schedule your free, no pressure cleaning consultation and to take advantage of $20 off your first time cleaning!

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