Is Bleach Bad for the Environment?

Whether you are looking for eco-friendly cleaning services or safe cleaning methods for your home, bleach is known to be the go-to when you want to ensure a thorough clean. This is has become even more critical since the world was swept by the Covid-19 pandemic. With greater awareness of the environmental impact we are having on our planet, people are now asking “is bleach bad for the environment?”. Another question many people forget to ask is whether it is safe for us? We assume that it is because it has been around for decades but then so was asbestos and lead paint.

Eco-friendly standards state that bleach is toxic to waterways and aquatic life and it is recommended alternate products are used. A study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information reported that “a pediatric study over a 16-year period that just under 270,000 US children (<5 years of age) were injured by household cleaning products. Bleach was the leading source”.

Common Causes of Bleach Exposure

There are numerous ways humans and pets can be exposed to bleach. If someone needs medical assistance due to bleach exposure, it will be extremely helpful for medical personnel to know the way they were exposed.

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The most common causes of bleach exposure are:

  • Exposure to spray: this can be direct or from the drifting of spray in the air. This can cause heart (pulmonary), eye (ocular) or skin (dermatological) issues.
  • Immersing in the liquid: this can be directly immersing part of the body in the liquid or via a splash. This can cause eye (ocular), skin (dermatological) and stomach (gastrointestinal) issues.
  • Consumption: ingesting the liquid is a risk particularly for young children. Consuming the liquid can cause heart (pulmonary) issues.
  • Breathing: breathing in the fumes or small amounts of bleach can cause heart (pulmonary) issues.

How Toxic is Bleach?

The level of toxic impact of bleach depends on a number of factors such as where it enters the body. It can cause sever eye irritation and can also create severe irritation to the throat and mouth.

In many households around the world, there are other cleaning products which can help to make bleach extremely dangerous. For example, many toilet cleaners contain ammonia which, when mixed with bleach, creates a chlorine gas that can cause unconsciousness or death by suffocation. This can occur when the chlorine gas interacts with moist areas such as the eyes or lung turning the gas into hydrochloric acid. Once digested in the body it damages tissue and causes damage to the airways including causing asphyxiation.

What to Use Instead of Bleach

The best way to clean your home or workplace is to use environmentally friendly cleaning products and the right tips from experts. If you have kids or pets in your home, it is essential to consider using safe products to prevent any health issues from emerging.

Fortunately these days there are a wide range of eco friendly cleaning products in the market which are great alternatives to bleach. These are some of our recommended options of what to use instead of bleach.

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1. Seventh Generation

Seventh Generation is an established brand that offers a collection of cleaners and detergents, as well as wipes. The company is also known for making natural and free clear diapers, pads and tampon. They have a chlorine-free bleach product which is a great option.

2. Grab Green Natural Bleach

Bleach is often used in the laundry. The Grab Green Natural bleach is an excellent option to consider as an alternative. It is fragrance-free and is also clear of all dyes and scents. It has a velcro closure that is convenient and easy to use.

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The good thing about this product is that is superior and has ingredients that are responsibly sourced. Therefore,it means that it is safe for the whole family as it does not include toxins or masking agents.

is bleach bad for the environment

3. RMR-86 Stain Remover

If you want to get rid of stubborn stains, the RMR-86 stain remover is the right option to consider. It is particularly effective on mold and mildew so is a great option for bathroom cleaning. Not only is it environmentally friendly, but it also eliminates bad odors.

It acts fast and targets stains that are deeply embedded in your bathroom tiles, under the sink or in the grout lines. With this stain remover you won’t have to struggle too much because it doesn’t require much scrubbing, thanks to its powerful, yet eco-friendly ingredients. It is safe to use on multiple surfaces.

is bleach eco friendly

4. Better Life Natural Toilet Bowl Cleaner

To make sure you don’t run any risk of accidentally creating a toxic mix we suggest you change to a natural toilet bowl cleaner. Better Life uses natural ingredients making it environmentally friendly and ideal to use in your home. You can use it to thoroughly clean your toilet bowl and remove rings or banish buildup faster. It does not contain any dyes, sulfates, or synthetic fragrances. It provides more plant power and safe formulas. It is quite powerful and affordable, which makes it a great option.


Whether you are looking for eco friendly cleaning services, or safe cleaning methods for your home, bleach is known to be effective but does carry risks and is not good for the environment. Consider the ingredients of products and choose ones that are not only safe for the environment but also safe for you, your family and your pets.

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