It’s difficult to overstate the importance of green cleaning, although many people don’t necessarily understand why. Natural, eco-friendly, and organic cleaning products have been gaining traction in the market for the past few decades, but they are often more expensive, and marketed as luxury items rather than household staples. But with the harm you can cause to yourself and the environment with many under-regulated household chemicals and dry cleaning solutions, it’s hardly worth the risk simply to save a few dollars a week.
Technically, “dry cleaning” is a misnomer. It’s not that your clothes don’t get wet, they simply don’t use water. Instead, dry cleaners use a dangerously under-regulated chemical called perchloroethylene (PERC).
PERC is a chlorocarbon that acts as a solvent for organic materials. PERC is so widely used in dry cleaners around the world that it is often simply referred to as “dry cleaning liquid.” Unfortunately for consumers, PERC is also a Group 2A carcinogen, and a Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) according to the EPA.
PERC can enter the body in a variety of ways, either through skin contact, inhalation, or ingestion of contaminated drinking water. Prolonged hours of exposure to this chemical led to debilitation migraines, nausea, respiratory irritation, organ damage, and more. It also has detrimental environmental effects, and can contaminate groundwater hundred of feet underground after seeping through concrete and dirt.
First synthesized in 1821, PERC is practically an archaic substance. It’s predominantly still used only due to low price and a lack of regulation. Newly engineered green cleaning solvents not only reduce risks to your health and the environment, they also clean your clothes batter.
Since 1995, Greener Cleaner has advocated for eco-friendly “wet cleaning” in Chicago to promote the advancement of the cleaning industry and the preservation of the environment. By supporting us as we grow throughout the city and suburbs, you not only look after yourself, you help others make the green choice as well.