How to whiten whites without bleach? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 17 Old 01-22-2008, 10:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
Susuhound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hi there
I have a bunch of clothing that used to be white, but is now yellowish and not-white. How do you all whiten stuff without bleaching with nasty chemicals. The clothing in question is mostly cotton (business shirts etc) and is in good condition otherwise, so I don't feel like throwing out or giving away.
TIA
Susuhound is offline  
#2 of 17 Old 01-22-2008, 11:56 PM
 
moderngal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,288
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Have you tried vinegar? Or peroxide?

modern-mama to DS (5.16.05) and DD (9.11.08) and one more (GIRL!) coming in December
moderngal is offline  
#3 of 17 Old 01-24-2008, 01:35 AM
 
SillyLilStinkweed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Boulder, Co.
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
and a few days of sun.
SillyLilStinkweed is offline  
#4 of 17 Old 01-24-2008, 01:36 AM
 
JAMmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 17
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've heard lemon juice works, but haven't tried it..
JAMmama is offline  
#5 of 17 Old 01-24-2008, 02:07 AM
 
artemis33's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,353
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sunshine does work wonders! Since it is summer for you I bet you have plenty (and I'm only a little jealous lol)

mama to two sweet girliesdust.gifhearts.gifrainbow1284.gif 
artemis33 is online now  
#6 of 17 Old 01-24-2008, 03:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
Susuhound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
OK I will give vinegar a try. It's through not lack of sunlight anyway lol I only ever line dry and my biggest problem is destruction of fibres from too much UV I think. My clothes pegs shatter at regular intervals
I would like a little more of this..: just quietly then I could hide my icky yellow clothing under nice woolly knitted items
Susuhound is offline  
#7 of 17 Old 01-24-2008, 11:03 AM
 
ginger21's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
what's wrong with using bleach? it's good. but don't use too much coz it will damage the clothes.
ginger21 is offline  
#8 of 17 Old 01-26-2008, 11:40 AM
 
Bensmommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Up to my eyeballs in it...
Posts: 612
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What about oxygen bleaches? Oxyclean type stuff. Or good Borax?

Jen- married to best friend DH and mom to DS (8) , DD (5): 3 goldfish.gif, 3 chicken3.gif, and one great dog2.gif
Bensmommy is offline  
#9 of 17 Old 01-26-2008, 11:44 AM
 
Bensmommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Up to my eyeballs in it...
Posts: 612
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger21 View Post
what's wrong with using bleach? it's good. but don't use too much coz it will damage the clothes.
Chlorine is a pretty nasty respiratory toxin and is linked to asthma and heart problems. It's best to avoid. It's listed in the Clean Air Act as a hazardous pollutant.

Jen- married to best friend DH and mom to DS (8) , DD (5): 3 goldfish.gif, 3 chicken3.gif, and one great dog2.gif
Bensmommy is offline  
#10 of 17 Old 01-29-2008, 08:16 PM
 
ReadingMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the South
Posts: 1,557
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I like OxyClean too (is that toxic?) and also use Borax sometimes. I just read online today that 1/2 cup of baking soda in the rinse cycle can help whiten whites and brighten colors too. I haven't tried that myself though. Let us know what you find out! Hey, you could do an experiment with different alternatives to bleach and report back!

Book-lovin', relaxed homeschoolin', dog snugglin' mom of the best kid EVER!  AND...waiting for baby #2, due 5/9/14!  stork-boy.gif

ReadingMama is offline  
#11 of 17 Old 01-30-2008, 12:59 PM
 
Purple*Lotus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Fluffyville
Posts: 5,680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've been using peroxide and have had good luck with it.

ribbonpurple.gif  "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more than the risk it took to blossom." Anais Nin
   
Purple*Lotus is offline  
#12 of 17 Old 01-30-2008, 01:31 PM
 
mgilleran@earth-co's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 391
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm a huge peroxide fan. I use it on al o four stains. It is great on colors. DD gets chocolate on almost every shirt she wears!
mgilleran@earth-co is offline  
#13 of 17 Old 01-31-2008, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
Susuhound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I tried vinegar with no noticeable improvement. Is peroxide nasty? i have no idea. it sounds like it means business lol....
I wonder if my problem is too much sunshine making things yellow? I leave things out all day in direct sun, with a great big old hole in the ozone layer right over them.
Susuhound is offline  
#14 of 17 Old 01-31-2008, 09:46 AM
 
zonapellucida's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: betwixt and between bairns
Posts: 3,999
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I ditto the peroxide.

 Mom of many minions . . . babyf.gif jumpers.gif     jumpers.gif     jumpers.gif
"And when our baby stirs and struggles to be born it compels humility: what we began is now its own." Margaret Mead 
zonapellucida is offline  
#15 of 17 Old 02-01-2008, 03:29 PM
 
ReadingMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the South
Posts: 1,557
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I found this tip online:

Get stained white socks and dingy dishcloths white again. Add 1 cup white distilled vinegar to a large pot of water, bring it to a rolling boil and drop in the articles. Let soak overnight.

Book-lovin', relaxed homeschoolin', dog snugglin' mom of the best kid EVER!  AND...waiting for baby #2, due 5/9/14!  stork-boy.gif

ReadingMama is offline  
#16 of 17 Old 02-02-2008, 02:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
Susuhound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
oooh ok hot vinegar. i'll give it a go next week. ummmmm *domestically challenged alert* boiling hot water won't kill a cotton shirt? I only ever wash in cold so get nervous around hot water. Oh well, they're not really wearable anyway so if they die so be it.....
Susuhound is offline  
#17 of 17 Old 02-02-2008, 12:50 PM
 
moderngal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,288
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I read a thing in Martha Stewart Living last night on this- she said to bring a large pot of water to a boil, then to put the water into a basin in the sink and add 8oz of oxygen bleach powder (she recommended Bi-O-Kleen's version). Then add your clothes and let them soak until the water is cool enough for you to handle (maybe an hour). Then wring them out and launder as usual.

There's also this tip on her site that is similar:
http://www.marthastewart.com/article...ing-clothes_p3

modern-mama to DS (5.16.05) and DD (9.11.08) and one more (GIRL!) coming in December
moderngal is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off