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Best Color Safe Bleaches in 2023: Buying Guide

If you are noticing that your colored clothes are looking stained, faded or dirty, you might need to check out color safe bleach. What’s the issue with normal chlorine bleach? Simply put, it’ll fade and discolor colored clothing. Color safe bleaches will bring those tired clothes back to life!

Best Color Safe Bleaches

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What Is Color Safe Bleach?

Similar to chlorine bleach, color-safe bleach helps get stubborn stains out, like fruit juices or red wine. It does so without the use of sodium hypochlorite, which discolors clothes. Instead uses different active ingredients to do the same job, but gently and safely.

Some use oxygen bleaches or hydrogen peroxide. This allows the bleach to do everything chlorine bleaches do, like remove stains, clean laundry and brighten your clothes.

The big difference is, of course, that it won’t fade your colored garments. You can use color safe bleach whenever normal bleach would be used – for stains, dinginess or when your clothes need some brightening.

Color Safe Bleaches

Color Safe Bleach vs. Oxygen Bleach

While oxygen bleach is a type color safe bleach, it doesn’t mean that all color safe bleaches are made with oxygen bleach. Oxygen bleach is made with sodium percarbonate.

When it meets water, it breaks down into sodium carbonate and hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is an ingredient in many color safe bleaches. It removes stains by attacking and destroying the chemical bonds of a stain.

Though, sodium carbonate isn’t always an ingredient in color safe bleaches, it’s inclusion in oxygen bleach does provide a few extra benefits:

  1. It softens water
  2. It neutralizes the absorption of anionic surfactants
  3. It cuts through grease
  4. It lifts soil from clothes
  5. It allows detergent to better penetrate fabrics

Safe Bleach

Can You Wash Colored Clothes with Bleach?

Using chlorine bleach on colored clothes can leave you with unseemly bleach stains. They appear whitish or faded versions of your garment’s colors. This is why chlorine bleach should only be used for white clothes, as it will even discolor shades that are very close to white. In contrast, color safe bleach is safe for both colored and white clothes!

Is Color Safe Bleach as Effective as Regular Bleach?

The answer to this depends on what brand you choose. Generally, color safe bleach should be just as effective as normal bleach. The main difference is that chlorine found in typical bleach is a strong disinfectant, a property color safe bleach obviously lacks.

However, since color safe bleach contains less harsh chemicals, this is more of a trade-off than a downgrade. An interesting note, however, is that the product OxiClean claims their color safe bleach is 40% more effective than normal bleach! So, you might be getting a superior product.

Color Safe Bleach

Keep In Mind:
Even though color safe bleach is gentler, you should never swallow it or let it touch the surface of your eyes. As always, exercise caution and make sure children and pets can’t access your bleach.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Use Color Safe Bleach on Whites?

Yes! Color safe bleach is still effective on whites.

Is Color Safe Bleach Safe for Darks?

Yes, color safe bleach will not fade dark colors, it might even make them more vivid.

A possible downside, though, is that residues on cleaning products and detergents tend to be more noticeable when left behind on dark colors. In this case, give your clothes an extra rinse cycle to ensure these residues are removed.

Does Color Safe Bleach Kill Mold and Mildew?

In terms of the products we’re sharing, most of them don’t list mold and mildew killing effects. While color safe bleach is great with stains and brightening, chlorine bleach is still your best bet for disinfecting fabric.


Does Color Safe Bleach Kill Norovirus?

Color safe bleach does contain hydrogen peroxide, which is able to kill Norovirus. That being said, pure hydrogen peroxide will always be the best for disinfecting, because color safe bleach contains numerous other ingredients. Color safe bleach is also not typically advertised as a disinfectant.

Savvy Green, Oxygen Brightening Powder Lbs,...
  • Oxygen-based bleach alternative boosts your detergent's cleaning power for brighter,...
  • Safe for all temperatures, on all water washable fabrics; can also be used as an...

Does Color Safe Bleach Remove Odors?

It depends, some color safe bleaches are advertised as deodorizers. But other brands don’t list this property, so you might need to use detergent alongside your bleach to get the fresh smelling clothes you want.

Play It Safe

Color safe bleach will not discolor you clothes like toxic chlorine bleaches, while still guaranteeing you some bright and stain-free clothes!

Savvy Green Oxygen Brightening Powder is our top choice for brightening clothes. It’s also versatile and can be used as a general cleaner elsewhere around the house.

OxiClean White Revive is the best for removing tough stains.

And Grab Green Natural Pods are a great non-toxic choice.

OxiClean White Revive Laundry Whitener and...
  • One 5 lb container of OxiClean White Revive Laundry Whitener and Stain Remover Powder to...
  • Oxygen-based, water-activated detergent booster whitens whites 40 percent better than...

Color Safe Bleach | Recommended

If you have any questions or comments, please add them below in the comment section. Similarly, please let us know if you spot any mistakes or omissions. Thanks!

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Last Update: 2024-04-15 | Affiliate links/Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About the author

Hi I’m Alex, founder of HouseholdMe.com and I’d like to say thank you for dropping by. Like most of you, the first thing I look at before buying something online is reviews or buying guides. By reading what other people say will help me gauge whether or not a product is good or not.  I am trying to help people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired.

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