Product Type: Other Brands Household Cleaning
Newest Review: ... compartment of my washing machine, about 20 drops for an extra freshness. Soapnuts do not have an scent and they can leave your cloth... more
Nuts about soapnuts
Member Name: i_am_joy
Advantages: Cheaper than conventional powder, better for the planet and they are good for sensitive skin
Disadvantages: Soapnuts do not remove marks and stains
I have been trying to lessen my impact on the planet since long before it became the cool thing to do and I have recently found a new way of doing this.
Soapnuts first came to my attention when I was searching for information about greener ways to do my washing and all the links I found on Google kept coming back to Soapnuts. I found myself at www.inasoapnutshell.com and after reading a little bit about Soapnuts on there I saw I could order a free sample and only had to pay for the postage through Paypal or send a SAE for them.
I sent off for some and I was so impressed that I have just today ordered myself a full pack because I think they are so good.
Soapnuts are grown on trees in Nepal and India and the shells contain Saponin which is a natural soap and this is what you are going to do your washing with. I was not convinced it was going to work because the Soapnut shells looked like something I find on my lawn underneath the trees but I gave them a try not just because of the planet but also because I thought they might help with my excema being as they are completely natural.
I used a small muslin bag to put my soapnuts into the washing machine because you have to use between 6 and 8 half shells in each wash. The website suggests you use a cotton bag or knotted sock but the muslin bag worked fine except the shells snagged it a little bit but I am not worried about that. I sometimes put a few drops of lavender essence into my conditioner drawer to give my clothes some fragrance because there is no scent to soapnuts.
The first load of washing only had lightly soiled clothing in it and none of the clothes were visibly dirty it was just they had been worn and needed to be washed. This load came out spotlessly clean and it smelt fresher than when it had first gone in the washing machine even though I had not used any fragrance this time. My clothes felt soft as well and that in something in soapnuts favour for me because I cannot use softener at all because of my sensitive skin and even the Pure varieties can irritate me.
You can use the same set of soapnuts for more than 1 load and their cleaning ability does not diminish until they are right at the end of their life. Do not worry that you will not know when to replace them because they turn dark and go soft when you cannot use them anymore and then you can safely put them on your compost heap if you have one. They are normally a light colour with a brittle texture so you will know when they need changing. I noticed mine had gone dark but still tried to do a wash with them but when my clothes had gone through the machine it looked and felt like they had been washed in plain water.
I later washed my grandaughters blouse after she had a nosebleed but soapnuts do not get rid of stains very well so the marks the blood had made were still there and had not even faded very much. The same happened when I washed my tea towels because they can get very grubby when I am cooking and I was disappointed that they still looked dirty when they had been washed although the soapnuts had taken the greasy cooking smell out of the towels.
It is very cheap to do your washing with soapnuts because from www.inasoapnutshell.com you can buy 500 g of soapnuts for £7 and this will do up to 300 washes. I thought about it the other night and even if that figure is wildly optimistic and they will only do 200 washes then it is still much, much cheaper than buying washing powder. I still have to buy the occasional box of Surf because when I have heavily soiled articles the soapnuts do not get them clean so I have to use normal washing powder but that is no problem because I will carry on using soapnuts for the rest of my washing.
Summary: I tried these on a whim and love them so much I will buy these from now on