I've been in deep cleaning mode around the house. With Fox crawling and scooting about, the carpets were a top priority so I got out our Bissell. It came with a sample bottle (I can't even remember which carpet cleaner it was, but some Bissell something or other) and the directions call for 2 1/2 ounces of it. Without going into a full description of the gunk that came from our carpet, steam cleaning them was a hugely satisfying experience. The Bissell shampoo, however, has such a strong scent I had a horrible headache before I'd even finished half of the first rug.
Now I didn't expect gentle greatness from a Bissell shampoo, but it was what I had on hand and I figured I'd better use it. Perhaps the lack of sleep from a teething 8 month old impaired my judgement. Whatever the excuse, I hopped on the internet to find an alternative well before the headache subsided. I was on the search for something without scary ingredients and artificial fragrance.
Here's what I found: Bissell does make an unscented cleaner, but none of their products rate well with the Environmental Working Group website. I found this post (and all the comments that followed...whoa!) and narrowed my options to BioKleen Carpet and Rug Shampoo and Earth Friendly Products Concentrated Carpet Shampoo. There was also a suggestion to check out BabyGanics, but after one incident of blindly buying their sunscreen and then reading the ingredients (it sounds organic, right?!), I think they are the poster child of green washing.
BioKleen: Graded D by ewg.org, though I believe it's partly due to their grading the surfactant as "non-specific".
Water (filtered), Glycerin (vegetable), Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside (plant based surfactant), C10-16 Alkyl Glucoside (plant based), Citrus Terpenes, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Dipropylene Glycol, Benzisothiazolinone, Viable Bacillus Cultures
Earth Friendly Products: Graded A by ewg.org; available in Bergamot and Sage or odorless
Water, Sodium Citrate (plant-based water softener), Caprylyl/Myristyl Glucoside (plant-based surfactant), Citric Acid (plant-based pH adjuster), Xanthan Gum (plant-based, food grade thickener), Enzyme Blend (soil remover), Potassium Sorbate (plant-based, food grade preservative), Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Salvia Sclarea (Clary) Oil
The decision? I'm going to get a small bottle of the Earth Friendly version. I'll let you know what I think!