Natural Bleach Alternatives For a Squeaky Clean Home

Bleach has been one of the most common household cleaning products for the last 100 years. However, bleach has some downsides for our health and the environment. Whether you’re looking to brighten whites, eliminate stains, or sanitize surfaces, these natural bleach alternatives may be the answer to a healthier, cleaner home.

What is Bleach? 

Bleach is a chemical compound widely used as a disinfectant and whitener in the home. The most common type of bleach used in households is sodium hypochlorite or “liquid bleach.” Sodium hypochlorite is a clear, slightly yellowish liquid with a strong smell. It’s typically diluted with water because using it at full strength can cause it to “eat away” at certain materials. 

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How Does Bleach Work? 

Bleach’s disinfectant and stain remover action comes through its oxidative and antimicrobial properties. 

Sodium hypochlorite, the active ingredient in bleach, is a powerful oxidizing agent. It chemically alters substances by transferring oxygen molecules. This oxidation process breaks down many types of stains and contaminants. It makes them less visible or completely removes them.

Bleach is highly effective at killing many microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi. It disrupts their structure and function by oxidizing parts of their cells or key enzymes. This action disinfects surfaces and water, making it safe to drink and use.

Bleach’s oxidative effects can also break down pigments that discolor fabrics and surfaces. This is why bleach laundry products whiten clothing and remove stains.

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