washing laundry

What Are The Best Natural Substitutes For Detergent?

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Did you know that you can also get your laundry clean with natural means? Here we present alternatives to detergents that are effective and protect the environment.

Are you already buying organic products and gradually replacing the plastic in the household? Another step towards environmental protection is the replacement of budget funds. This article is about laundry detergent and washing powder. We’ll show you which environmentally friendly alternatives you can replace it with.

This not only protects the environment. Because if you replace the detergent, you save a lot of plastic waste and a whole range of chemical substances that would be pumped directly into the sewer after washing: surfactants, bleach, fragrances, and much more.

Another plus point for alternative detergents is the money. You save a lot of money in the long run because you can find most of it in nature or buy it for a few euros.

Chestnut detergent

chestnut detergent
img source: blog.falkensteiner.com

Horse chestnuts contain foam-forming saponins and can therefore be used to clean lightly to moderately soiled laundry.

How to make your own detergent from chestnuts: All you need for the detergent is 10-15 horse chestnuts and 300 ml of hot water. Chop the chestnuts and let them soak in the water overnight. The next day, you’ll have a milky liquid that you can use like liquid laundry detergent.

Advantages and disadvantages: Chestnuts are a very inexpensive alternative to conventional detergents because they don’t cost anything and you can easily collect them.

However, you are seasonally very limited when it comes to chestnuts, you can only find them in autumn. In addition, the production of the detergent is complex and the residues that arise cannot be broken down in the sewage treatment plant.

Washing ball

washing ball
img source:verk.store

Washing balls allow washing without the addition of chemicals. They contain small ceramic balls that change the pH of the water when washed. This can remove dirt particles from clothing.

Advantages and disadvantages: Washing balls are the most effective variant with regard to detergent alternatives and are also suitable for all fibers.

Another benefit is that you can use them for up to three years. However, washing balls are not biodegradable and are relatively expensive.

Soap nuts

soap nuts
img source: images.squarespace-cdn.com

Even soap nuts, the nuts of the Indian soap nut tree contain foaming saponins. However, due to their mild cleaning power, they are only suitable for light soiling.

Application: You can put the shells of the soapnuts in a bag and put them in the washing drum. But there are also powder or liquid extracts.

Advantages and disadvantages: Soap nuts protect the environment and are very easy to use. The disadvantage is their comparatively poor environmental balance compared to the other alternatives, as they usually cover long transport routes.

Ivy detergent

ivy detergent
img source: smarticular.net

If you happen to have ivy around you, you can use the foliage as laundry detergent. Like chestnuts and soap nuts, ivy contains saponins.

Application: Pick about 10-15 fresh ivy leaves and place them in a sock or bag. So the ivy can be put directly into the washing drum.

Disadvantage: As with the other saponin-containing plant components, ivy also has little cleaning power.

Make laundry detergents yourself from home remedies

natural laundry detergent
img source: bootsandhooveshomestead.com

You can also put together a detergent from your home remedies that many have in the household anyway. Otherwise, these don’t cost much and last a long time.

You need these ingredients for this:

3 liters of water

20 g curd soap

20 g gall soap

4 tbsp citric acid

4 tbsp washing soda

If desired, 5 drops of 100% essential oil

Preparation of the sustainable detergent: You finely grate the soaps with a kitchen grater and mix them with washing soda in a bowl. Then add a liter of boiling water and stir until the soap has dissolved.

This is followed by two cooling steps. After each cooling down you add a liter of hot water and stir. Then add citric acid and essential oil and after cooling down again, your detergent is ready.

You should pay attention to: Since soda and citric acid react with each other and can cause strong foaming, you can only add the citric acid when washing. After the mass has cooled down, it will become firmer and you can portion it with a spoon. So you always have the right amount to wash.

Depending on how dirty your laundry is, add one to two lids of the homemade detergent per wash cycle. If lumps form during storage, just discard them.

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