1. Skin Irritation

Skin irritation can be a response to stress factors caused by clothing and laundry detergent1-5

Physical, chemical, and immunologic stress factors caused by clothing and detergent can elicit an inflammatory response in sensitive skin.1-5
References:
  1. Fujimura T, Takagi Y, Sugano I, et al. Real-life use of underwear treated with fabric softeners improves skin dryness by decreasing the friction of fabrics against the skin. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2011;33(6):566-571.
  2. Kiriyama T, Sugiura H, Uehara M. Residual washing detergent in cotton clothes: a factor of winter deterioration of dry skin in atopic dermatitis. J Dermatol. 2003;30(10):708-712.
  3. Allergy to mold - animal dander - dust. MedlinePlus website. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000814.htm. Accessed August 23, 2012.
  4. Housecleaning tips to ease allergies. WebMD website. http://www.webmd.com/allergies/features/allergy-tips. Accessed April 25, 2014.
  5. Sensitive skin. American Academy of Dermatology website. http://www.aad.org/media-resources/stats-and-facts/prevention-and-care/sensitive-skin. Accessed April 25, 2014.

2. Chemical Stresses

Laundry products are complex chemical formulations1-3


Surfactants can induce or exacerbate existing skin conditions5
Depending on their degree of irritancy, surfactants can alter stratum corneum (SC) proteins and lipids, resulting in5:
- Subsequent permeation of the SC, allowing surfactants to reach viable keratinocytes and cause further damage
- Compromised skin barrier function
Surfactants can be combined to minimize the effects of laundry formulations on skin6,7
When combined, nonionic (mild) surfactants reduce the harshness of anionic surfactants and reduce the skin irritancy potential of detergents on sensitive skin7,8
References:
  1. Belsito DV, Fransway AF, Fowler JF Jr, et al. Allergic contact dermatitis to detergents: a multicenter study to assess prevalence. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2002;46(2):200-206.
  2. Broze G. Detergents: technical and practical challenges. In: Broze G, ed. Handbook of Detergents. Part A: Properties. New York, NY: Marcel Dekker; 1999:1-5.
  3. de Guertechin LO. Surfactants: classification. In: Broze G, ed. Handbook of Detergents. Part A: Properties. New York, NY: Marcel Dekker; 1999:7-46.
  4. Optical brighteners. BASF website. http://www.dispersions-pigments.basf.com/portal/basf/ien/dt.jsp?setCursor=1_556358. Accessed April 28, 2014.
  5. Corazza M, Lauriola MM, Zappaterra M, Bianchi A, Virgili A. Surfactants, skin cleansing protagonists. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2010;24(1):1-6.
  6. Crawford C, Zirwas MJ. Laundry detergents and skin irritancy—a comprehensive review. Skinmed. 2014;12(1):23-31.
  7. Hall-Manning TJ, Holland GH, Rennie G, et al. Skin irritation potential of mixed surfactant systems. Food Chem Toxicol. 1998;36(3):233-238.
  8. Data on file, The Sun Products Corporation.

3. Physical Stresses


Magnification of fabric microstructure altered by repeat washing
Fabric microstructure is permanently altered after repeat washing

Alteration is caused by1:
- Shrinkage and fraying of fibers due to repeated washing
- Mechanical friction in the wash
- Chemical action of detergents
- Deposition of salts found in detergent and hard water

These changes can induce or exacerbate existing skin conditions2
References:
  1. Farooq A, Schramm CJ Jr. Fabric softening. In: Zoller U, ed. Handbook of Detergents. Part E: Applications. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press; 2009:181-200.
  2. Fujimura T, Takagi Y, Sugano I, et al. Real-life use of underwear treated with fabric softeners improves skin dryness by decreasing the friction of fabrics against the skin. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2011;33(6):566-571.

4. Immunologic Stresses

Immunologic stress factors that can contribute to skin sensitization include:

Airborne allergens that become trapped in fabric fibers1-3
These can include top seasonal and everyday allergens, such as:
- Cat and dog dander
- Dust mite matter
- Ragweed pollen
- Grass pollen
- Tree pollen
Formaldehyde released by permanent press clothing4
Dyes and perfumes5
watch demo

References:
  1. Allergy to mold - animal dander - dust. MedlinePlus website. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000814.htm. Accessed August 23, 2012.
  2. Housecleaning tips to ease allergies. WebMD website. http://www.webmd.com/allergies/features/allergy-tips. Accessed April 25, 2014.
  3. Arshad SH, Tariq SM, Matthews S, Hakim E. Sensitization to common allergens and its association with allergic disorders at age 4 years: a whole population birth cohort study. Pediatrics. 2001;108(2):e33. doi:10.1542/peds.108.2.e33.
  4. Kiracofe EA, Zirwas MJ. Formaldehyde in textiles—what dermatologists need to know about the relationship to contact dermatitis: a review of the US Government Accountability Office's Report to Congressional Committees. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2012;67(2):313-314.
  5. Elsner P. Allergic and irritative textile dermatitis [in German]. Schweiz Med Wochenschr. 1994;124(3):111-118.