Dryer sheets - they make your clothes smell fresh and they help eliminate static cling. But unfortunately that's not all they do.
People think that hanging clothes out to dry in the sun is old-fashioned and inconvenient. The fact that you think your clothes are cleaner and fresher when using chemically-fragranced dryer sheets is an advertiser’s dream come true.
Also it is possible that the use of dryer sheets can even destroy your natural sense of smell.
Reasons That Dryer Sheets Are Not That Great
Dryer sheets are toxic for many people as most commercial brands are impregnated with harmful chemicals including benzyl acetate, benzyl alcohol, chloroform and linalool. These are bad for you, your family and the environment. Apart from some of these compounds being known carcinogens, they can also trigger asthma attacks. You’re breathing in chemicals AND having them rub against your skin all day, as well as all night from your bed linen. Think about how much your skin and your system is absorbing
The synthetic fragrances in dryer sheets are toxic as well. To hide the chemical smell in the dryer sheets, manufacturers load them full of chemical fragrances, which are also potentially carcinogenic.
Dryer sheets also make fabrics less absorbent and should not be used with towels and sheets as they coat the fabric.
Dryer sheets are also bad news for your dryer. The waxy component in the dryer sheets is there to make the laundry soft and static free but it builds up on your clothes and on the lint screen of the dryer, preventing the dryer from functioning effectively. It can even lead to the burning out the heating element over time or causing the dryer itself to catch fire. You cannot SEE the film, BUT IT'S THERE!
A Few Prevention Tips
The oils used in dryer sheets can also lead to build up in other parts of the dryer. One area of concern is the motor fan, where any such coating will need to be scraped off.
You can use inexpensive white vinegar in the rinse cycle of the washer to prevent static cling or add a quarter cup of baking soda to the wash cycle as a natural fabric softener, and eliminate the dryer sheets altogether.
Buy a set of dryer balls. These little guys will soften your clothes and reduce static cling while not adding any chemicals to your laundry.
A final tip for the laundry is to soak an old hand towel in a natural fabric softener before wringing it out and let it dry completely. Add to your next load and it will be good for at least 40 loads of laundry. A very economical way to go.