Allergen Free Detergent

Updated on March 23, 2009
B.B. asks from Flower Mound, TX
47 answers

My son started getting hives on Friday. My assumption is my detergent and I would like to know what good detergent options are out there that would reduce the chance of an allergic reaction. I haven't changed brands in years but I don't stick to the same scent. The first hives showed at daycare on his cheek and ear when he got up from nap. It went away in an hour or so, they told me. Later that night, he had hives/whelps on the back part of his upper arm but nowhere else. Gave him benedryl and the hives went away. Saturday afternoon, hives turned up on his upper thighes, rear and back of his legs. I gave him benedryl again and they went away. They don't hurt him but do itch. I did take pictures to share with the doctor in case they continue to come back before I can find out what is causing them. As I said before, my assumption is a new scent of Tide. I have now washed the clothes and bedding he will be using the next few days in Drift to see if the hives do not come back. I'm open to other suggestions on how to narrow down the cause of the hives.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

I want to thank everyone for all the great advise. We just got back from the doctor who said we will probably never know what caused the hives. They were probably not related to the detergent since he had not had a previous breakout. I will continue to watch him incase they return. I am planning to change detergents anyway since it would be better for the whole family. Thank you for all the input. I'm also going to lessen my laundry load size to help with the rinse cycle.

Thanks again.

More Answers

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

G.A.

answers from Tyler on

My sons dermatologist recommended all of the families clothes get washed in All Free and Clear, and no dryer sheets either. It has helped tremendously.

1 mom found this helpful
Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.G.

answers from Abilene on

Dear B.,
How would you like to do your laundry without any detergent?
ckeck out www.ecoquestintl.com/garrett then click on the laundry pure,I've been using one for over 2 years would'nt take for it.
Good luck
J. G

1 mom found this helpful
Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.B.

answers from Dallas on

I have not read all the responses, so this may have been brought up somewhere below, but, generally hives come from within, not from touching things. I would seriously be looking at what he has eaten. Anything new? Berries are a troublesome source of hives for many people.

1 mom found this helpful
Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

N.C.

answers from Alexandria on

ALL is the best for allergies. get the white kind. it works for my family and my sister in law can't use anything but that.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.K.

answers from Dallas on

I have dealt with allergies for years with husband and son. Two things spring to mind. The daycare may have changed detergents or disinfectants on the bedding he uses to nap. Also, things are starting to bloom now, see if he has a reaction on days when he doesn't go outside.

Good luck - it is a long and difficult process to narrow it down.

D. Kimbriel
Grandma to 2 beautiful boys

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.M.

answers from Dallas on

B.,
I agree with Jennifer. It sounds more like something he ate or drank. I would check and see what he might have drank before the nap that day. My grandaugter gets hives and whelps around her mouth and cheeks when she eats something that she is allergic too. Even over the weekend, he could have consumed something on Friday at Daycare that appeared on Saturday. Sometimes there is a delayed reaction. Lots of times hives mean that something was consumed. The best way to tell is to track what your son is eating and drinking. Allergy testing only tests for what the majority of people are allergic to in the area in which you live.
Hope this helps you.
C.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.B.

answers from Dallas on

Dreft is what i use for my self (long time allergy sufferer) and my children. We all have severe allergies and asthma

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.C.

answers from Dallas on

B.,
About a year ago this happened to my daughter, I thought the same thing you did about the laundry soap so I tried Dreft-the one for babies, it did not work so I took her to the Dr to see if it was something else, what we found is that the school was using carpet powder and even though it only touched her a few times it was enough to give her a reaction. You might ask around before you start changing what you do at home. (BTW the Dreft is what the Dr recommended). Hope you find your cure!
Jenn

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.R.

answers from Dallas on

Both my kids have always had problems with skin reactions to allergens. I use Tide Free and before that I used a Cheer brand that was fragrence and dye-free but I don't ever see that in product in the stores anymore. Anyway, I think probably any fragrence-free and dye-free detergent should help. I always double-rinse too. Good luck.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

M.M.

answers from Dallas on

7th Generation (that's the brand name) has good all-natural soaps. Many of the regular ones sold are all loaded with harsh chemicals. And maybe try an extra rinse cycle.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.T.

answers from Dallas on

doesn't sound like a detergent allergy to me. sounds more like they wiped his nap mat with something he had a reaction to or possibly a food reaction. i'd want to know what he ate and when he ate it at school that day and if they've changed cleaning products. good luck, allergies are sneaky little beasts - also, did you check his body/face out REALLY CLOSELY to make sure it wasn't some type of bug bite?

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

V.P.

answers from Dallas on

Have you heard of a company called Melaleuca the wellness company? They have a line of launry care that is allergy free and harsh chemicals.
I can give you more information if you are interested. You can check out my website at www.MomsMakeDallars.com

My cell number is ###-###-####.

Vanessa P.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.C.

answers from Dallas on

I use the Dye/Fragrance Free ALL. It works great on stains. Method makes a dye/frangrance free option as well its a little more expensive but you can get them both at target. I also use dye/fragrance free cleaners and non-toxic/biodegradeable cleaners from Method (also found at Target) that are very reasonable.

It could also be an allergy that has popped up on another level that wasn't there before. Good luck! I hope the changes you make work.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.E.

answers from Amarillo on

Look for detergents without added colors or scents. I just bought some tide in a white bottle, no added scents or colors, and I like using it.

Also, do a second rinse and add about 1/2 cup white vinegar -- soaps/detergents are more basic on the pH scale, vinegar is more acidic, which brings the pH back to a more neutral zone.

Best wishes, A.

P.W.

answers from Dallas on

http://www.shaklee.net/healinghappens/product/00300 this is the liquid form, but also comes in a powder. You use very little and it is environmentally friendly. I have sensitive skin and I use it.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.S.

answers from Dallas on

Hello B.!

After a few months with my new born baby I found out that most of the common and well known brands of laundry detergent have some pretty dangerous chemicals in them. Even laundry detergent designed specifically for babies/older children. ESPECIALLY laundry detergent that has "fragrance" listed as an ingredient. That prompted me to start using laundry detergent that contained only ingredients that were naturally derived. Because people are becoming more and more aware of this, stores are beginning to carry the all natural option. So I would definitely look for these in your store, and if you do not see it then tell the store manager that you would like to see them carry it. Before my local Target started carrying the brand I use I would go to a local Health Food store and they have SEVERAL different brands that are all natural. I would also occasionally buy online directly from the company. Some brands include:

Seventh Generation (many common grocery stores are starting to carry this popular brand)

Shaklee (you can only buy online)

Mrs. Meyers (this is the brand I use, we love it)

Another option is to MAKE your own laundry soap, so you know exactly what it is made out of! There are tons of websites out there that show you how to make it, just do some google searching.

Also another thing to look into is not only is most laundry soaps out there full of harsh chemicals but also all popular brands of skin and hair care products! You would be shocked with what they put into the everyday things we use on our bodies. And everything we put on our bodies is soaked up and gets into our system. Here is a cool website to check out, they have done some extensive researching on how dangerous each brand is, you can search everything from make up to lotions to shampoos to baby wipes.

http://cosmeticdatabase.com/index.php?nothanks=1

Sorry to make this so long, I hope it helps steer you in the right direction!

J.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.H.

answers from Dallas on

to rule out detergents as the culprit, short of just using baking soda in the wash and vinegar in the rinse, a detergent good for fleece-lined cloth diapers should help (no perfumes or fragrances, no brighteners, etc.). i'd recommend "country save" powder or liquid, but it's tough to find. our kroger carries "planet," so that's what we use most. others on the list: bio-o-kleen (liquid, not powder), mountain green (free and clear), ecos (free and clear liquid), and arm & hammer essentials free (not mountain rain). just note that not all those claiming to be so are truly "free and clear" of many common allergens.

hth your little guy!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.H.

answers from Dallas on

Hey B., my name is C. and I am an older mom. I have kids in their 30's and then I have an 8 yr old daughter. She had suffered with some pretty bad allergies which lead me to a company that sells natural products - they are actually very affordable and cleared up her allergies in a matter of wks. These products are not sold in stores. This company has products to replace everything you are currently using in your home with a natural, non caustic product It made a big difference in our house. If you would like to get more information, just email me at [email protected]____.com.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.G.

answers from Dallas on

You could try soap nuts. No really, they are a shell that lathers. I guess you use them several times. Look up some websites.. some have samples for around 3 dollars. Then, go on ebay and buy in bulk.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.K.

answers from Philadelphia on

Go to Charliesoap.com! Tell them A. Kirsch sent you. ;)

You use one tiny scoop per load, and it's good for the environment, has no allergens, is great for diapers and stains! Good Luck!

V.C.

answers from Dallas on

Hi B.,
Even if your child did not react to the Tide, there are many other reasons to switch to safe and toxic free cleaners. I use Get Clean. Also per load it is much less expensive than other products. You can find it at http://www.shaklee.net/healthforlife
If you would like, I will send you a free DVD called the Rreal Dirt on Clean.
Good luck to you.
Victoria

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

G.A.

answers from Dallas on

Try putting white vinegar in the last rinse. G. W

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.C.

answers from Dallas on

My mother-in-law used Tide and it gave my husband a migraine when we went to visit. I think it is one of the harshest detergents available. I use the Shaklee laundry detergent and really hate it when I run out. I tried to finish off my Dreft, but noticed it didn't get the kid stains out! I pretreat food, drool, and grass stains, etc. by rubbing detergent on them before I put them on to wash and it all comes out. And it doesn't irritate anyone in our family. Makes me such a happy camper! If you have a front-loading washer, it takes one ounce per load. It comes in 32 and 64 oz. bottles. You can buy a pump for dispensing it. You can only order it online through Independent Distributors. www.shaklee.net/recipeforhealth

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

D.C.

answers from Dallas on

B.,
Tide in any scent would be at the top of my list of suspects.

There is also the possibility that you are overloading the machine so that clothing is not getting a thorough rinse.

Actually I would look for someting else.

God bless. D.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.M.

answers from Dallas on

I use All Free and Costco Kirkland Free. I have used it for many yrs through 3 babies and have had no problems.
Good Luck.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.A.

answers from Dallas on

I'm sensitive to perfumes in detergent. I like Arm and Hammer unscented. It's free of perfumes and dyes and is inexpensive. Also, if you're using a heavily scented fabric softener you might want to think about changing that as well. If you find out it's not the detergent could it be his soap or shampoo? Or maybe household cleaners used at the daycare and/or home.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.J.

answers from Dallas on

Perhaps you will have better luck with a natural detergent, such as the frangrance-free Method, Seventh Generation, or Meyer's brands. They are available at Target and don't cost more than the big chemical brands. Good luck! :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.N.

answers from Dallas on

try planet-they sell it online or at Tom Thumb...it's free of enzymes. There is a website actually geared at cloth diaper users, but it has a lot of wisdom about enzymes in detergents (even unscented ones) that may affect your child's skin.
http://www.pinstripesandpolkadots.com/detergentchoices.htm

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.L.

answers from Dallas on

I had some problems with my soap too. I was using All Free & Clear. My son had asthma & eczema. He was put on 3 meds a day & a cream for his skin. I never thought about it being form his soap!! I decided to stay work at home cause I didn't want to leave him in a day care. Well I bought the laundry soap and the other cleaners from Melaleuca. And within a month I stopped giving DS his meds!! A year later and still no meds and he is doing great!! Check out this site http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/478/keep_your_ch... it tells you about Dreft. And this one http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/formald... tells you about formaldehyde. This stuff is bad for you Check it out. Contact me if you want some more info.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

P.L.

answers from Abilene on

Since my family tends to have allergic reactions to certain detergents I was worried my son would be the same way. Since he was born I have been using a perfume free / dye free detergent (Cheers to be exact). My mom has tried many detergents when we were younger and cheers seemed to be the gentlest. SO I would suggest Cheer Free & Clear. Has no scent and no dyes.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.S.

answers from Dallas on

Conventional detergents are one of the most chemical ridden products most people use. I use Allen's Naturally. You have to order it online but it's so worth it. There are no chemicals in it ad it works great. It's a little pricey BUT not compared to Tide if that's what you've been buying. I use the powder and it's cheaper but I have the liquid too, both are great. If you have an HE washer you only need a quarter of the amount. A 5lb. box is like $25 and it does 75 loads in a normal washer or 300 loads in an HE washer. You can google it to find a site to buy it from. There are many that offer free shipping on it. I buy mine from www.nurturedfamily.com and www.littlesproutsdiapers.com.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

M.K.

answers from Dallas on

I use Tide Free which I love since it's Tide without the usual allergen suspects (especially since you've been using Tide). But even family members who are particularly sensitive don't seem to have any problems with our laundry or sleeping in our sheets.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

R.N.

answers from Dallas on

We use All Free and Clear. It does not have any dyes or fragrance and we also use any of the Free and Delicate dryer sheets also so the clothes will still be soft. The brand we use is Everyday Living from Kroger. Hope this helps and good luck!

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.S.

answers from Dallas on

B.,
I have a product that I found when my little girl had a rash from the chemicals in the detergents check this out you will save money as well as be thrilled about the results and if for some reason you don't like it you get your money back. Really it is amazing you won't be sorry. go to www.shaklee.netgetcleanlivegreen and click on the get clean products and they will talk about the products and everything you would need to know. If you have any questions email me at [email protected]____.com.

I am a huge advocate of green safe product for our children and would love to help you green your house.
Enjoy,
J.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

J.S.

answers from Dallas on

My husband is also very sensitive to the detergent that I use. The only one I have found is the All Clear.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.T.

answers from Dallas on

I had to take my roommate in college to the ER one day because of a bad rash and trouble breathing. The only new thing she had used was Tide to wash her clothes. Dreft is way too expensive. Use All Free and Clear.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.L.

answers from Dallas on

I haven't read every single reply but it looks like you've got several good detergent options. No matter what your choice, I'd stop using any softeners or dryer sheets and start using vinegar in the wash. ironically the reason clothes are not soft is because we use WAY too much detergent which does not wash out fully in the rinse. Try these 2 things, put the vinegar (just regular old white vinegar) in the softener compartment and also try reducing the amount of detergent in the wash until your clothes are coming out soft. The vinegar will wash out and you wont smell it (though I do still smell it in the washer when I open the lid because it's been in the softener dish) in the clothes. I found once I started this method that I was using more than double the amount of detergent than I really needed. Here's a couple of articles:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10056.html

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/no-more-static-cling-how...

That site also has great recommendations for your question, if you do a search.

BTW the I learned of the vinegar suggestion from a friend who's son has serious skin reactions to all kinds of stuff. Since then all of our friends have switched and we're all happy. And it saves $$! :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.C.

answers from Amarillo on

Good morning B.:
My name is A. and I live in Canyon, Texas. Your sons hives most likely could be your detergent. I use a liquid detergent that is concentrated (saves money) but has the PH of water. It is called MelaPower and is not sold in stores. I LOVE this stuff as I have extemely sensitive skin myself. Not only is it toxic free but it is kind my skin. I market this along with many other products for an International Wellness company. I am not a distributor so no salesperson here. Love to share with you about it! Just shoot me an email or respond to this and I will call you.

Make it a great day!
A.
[email protected]____.com
safenhappyhome.com

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

S.F.

answers from Dallas on

You may try "ALL - Free & Clear" I just recently learned about this from my doctor and she said it is perfect for folks with sensitive skin and allergies. No dyes, no perfumes, no fabric softeners. Good luck :)

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

B.C.

answers from Dallas on

Seventh Generation, Available at my Target.

My daughter got a chemical burn when we used a "normal" diaper for only 3 hours, so she has very sensitive skin and we have never had a problem with this Detergent.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.M.

answers from Dallas on

Your best bet is to wash your childs clothing separte with All. My son has bad allergies and excema that was #1 reccommemed by all doctors. You can use the All thats clear its the white bottle. I have had no problems with all at all.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

L.S.

answers from Dallas on

I saw your allergen free detergent problem on Mamasource, and I wanted to tell you what I had to do. I tried all of the detergents from the store, and my son, now 10, had the problem of itching. He would itch all over his body, and it was really embarrassing. When he was on the basketball court, it became a big joke with my mom friends to watch him itch. So, I tried the detergent from Melaleuca, and like they said, it took about 20 washes to get the detergent out of his clothes, but now he doesn't itch anymore. You can check out their website at www.melaleuca.com. With 3 of us in the house having asthma, I have turned my house into a Melaleuca house. I have noticed a lot of difference. L. Stein

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

C.D.

answers from Dallas on

"All free n clear" is great. It cleans well and doesn't have any dyes or perfumes. I would also suggest going without any sort of fabric softener. I would switch to using unscented glycerin soaps, and look for unscented shampoo and conditioner (check Whole Foods, Sprouts, Sunflower, or Central Market). If there is no change, you may want to talk to a doctor about having him tested for allergies. Sometimes, allergies won't cause hives until the body is exposed to more than it can handle of a particular substance.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

M.S.

answers from Dallas on

Hi B.,
Hope it is just the detergent - that's an easy fix!

I use Mrs. Meyer's, which you can get at Target. They have a lavender scent that is really yummy. I thought it was very expensive at first, but when I did the math on how many loads per bottle, it's about $1 more to wash my clothes with this.
I have heard from many people that Tide is the harshest detergent, so hopefully swtiching to something more gentle will fix that baby right up!

Peace,
M.
www.yogapotential.com

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

S.B.

answers from Dallas on

I use ECO's that I buy at Sam's Club. It's an organic product and works really well. The scent is a bit strong out of the container but isn't that overpowering on the clothes.
I didn't start to buy it because it was organic but because it is actually less expensive than the other brands (at least at Sam's Club)
Good luck.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

P.P.

answers from Dallas on

We have the same problems. Try Charlie Soap.
http://www.charliesoap.com/

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

K.R.

answers from Dallas on

My best friend's daughter has horrible allergies and has lots of skin reactions. She uses the Arm and Hammer Free which is a lot less expensive than many other brands. I have seen it on sale 4/$10 at Kroger and Tom Thumb on occasion.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches