What New York’s Laundry Detergent Ban Means for Some Popular Brands

Updated: Apr. 19, 2024

Many commercially available detergents were found to contain a probable human carcinogen.

Questions about laundry detergent safety have been hotly debated the past few years. Some critics say laundry pods are bad for the environment. Others suggest detergents are one way clothing could be killing you. But the recent move by the state of New York escalates those concerns into law.

It’s now illegal to sell certain popular laundry detergent brands in the Empire State. The ban went into effect at the end of 2022. The New York State Department of Conservation established a legal limit on how much 1,4-Dioxane, a potential carcinogen, can be present in detergent.

What Carcinogen Caused the Laundry Detergent Ban?

Simply put, 1,4-Dioxane is another thing in your home that could be making you sick. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified 1,4-Dioxane as a probable human carcinogen.

In recent years, 1,4-Dioxane has been detected in groundwater and drinking water supplies near chemical plants and waste sites. Because of manufacturing with ethoxylated ingredients, some household cleaning products also contain varying amounts of 1,4-Dioxane.

Under new state guidelines, any household cleaning or personal care products with more than two parts per million (PPM) of 1,4-Dioxane are banned. An even stricter limit of one ppm for 1,4-Dioxane in household cleaning and personal care products will take effect at the end of 2023.

What Popular Detergent Brands Contain 1,4-Dioxane?

According to a 2020 study conducted by chemical testing lab Bureau Veritas and commissioned by Ingredients Matter, 1,4-Dioxane was detected in many popular laundry detergents. Those ranged from conventional brands like Tide and All to plant-based brands like Mrs. Meyers.

Here’s the full list of brands that contained more than three PPM of 1,4-Dioxane, putting them all over New York’s legal limit:

  • Arm & Hammer Clean Burst;
  • Tide Original;
  • Arm & Hammer Sensitive Skin Free & Clear;
  • Gain Original + Aroma Boost.

The Healthy
Originally Published on The Healthy