Due to my hormone drugs, I have gotten a bit more sensitive to smells (I already was sensitive to smells). I tried to wear the shirt even though it smelled like fabric refresher but it was too strong for my sensitive nose. Of course, I had washed the shirt before wearing it, but the smell would not go away. So, I washed the shirt, tried to wear it, took it off because of the smell, and then washed it again. I must have washed that shirt 4-5 times. It still smells like fabric refresher.
This other time, I was doing laundry and I dropped the box of fabric softener sheets. I had to pick up the different sheets and put them back in the box. Being the hand washer that I am, I washed my hands after touching the fabric softener sheets. To my dismay, the smell didn't go away. I kept trying to wash my hands with different soaps to try and get the smell off, but it wasn't happening.
After these incidents, I became more aware of the chemical perfumes in products. They are strong, and some do smell good, but do we really need those chemical scents/perfumes? As far as fabric softeners go, you have to think about your skin absorbing all of these chemicals into your body 24 hours a day. Look it up and you will be shocked.
The solution to my problem: white, distilled vinegar. Vinegar is one of those miracle, "it does everything" products. I get a huge jug of it at Costco for $3.50? I put half a cup of vinegar in the fabric softener compartment in my washing machine and that's it. Vinegar is a natural antibacterial, removes soap scum, keeps colors bright, and naturally softens clothes. My laundry is soft and has no smell. Having no smell was something to get used to because we're trained to think that having a scent makes your laundry smell clean.
At first, I was skeptical about vinegar. I mean, who wants to smell like vinegar? But, I learned that there is absolutely no vinegar smell when it comes out of the dryer. So once I tried it, I couldn't go back. I really like that my clothes have no heavy scents/perfumes. The cherry on top is that it is affordable and not harmful to me or my family.