One of the things I love about this website is that I discover some incredible products that I probably wouldn't have used otherwise. If it wasn't for my concern over palm oil, I probably would have just carried on washing my clothes in normal detergent and paying a fortune for the privilege. But instead, I now wash them with totally natural organic palm oil free soapnuts - at a price of just £7.99 for over 108 washes.
Organic soapnut fruit shells laundry detergent
Soapnuts are used in rural India to wash clothes, among other functions. They couldn't be any more natural - they grow on trees. In fact they are so natural that they're even better for your clothes. They're less harsh than commercial detergents, preserving the colours in fabric. You can use them on washing of any temperature from 30 to 90 degrees and in all washing machines.
You just pop a few soapnuts into the little muslin bag provided, and put it into the washing machine drum. The clothes come out smelling a lot more natural than they would with regular detergent. Heavily soiled clothing needs a few extra soap nuts, and we've been using the soapnuts natural stain remover bar on stains.
Before we started using the soapnuts, my eldest daughter was intermittently suffering from a bit of a rash, which we put down to the detergent. Since using soapnuts, she is free of the rash. The brand suggest that these are a good idea for allergy sufferers, and they've certainly done the trick here.
I'm also impressed with the many uses for the soapnuts when they're past their best for washing. Each one can be used around four times before they start to disintegrate. At that point, they can be placed into the compost, where they will naturally break down. Alternatively, you can use them to make a foaming wash, antibacterial cleaner or my favourite - an organic pesticide. I will be giving this a go when we plant out our vegetables into the garden in a few weeks.
Natural stain remover bar
Along with the organic soap nuts, we've been trying out the natural stain remover bar. This is made of real soap with eucalyptus and litsea. As with any stain remover, you dampen the area and rub this onto both sides. It works to take out the stains and is recommended for use on any stain. It even works on blood, grease, underarm stains, grass stains and red wine. You can also use it on carpets and upholstery as well as washing.
This is effective on getting rid of tough stains on laundry, I'm yet to try it on upholstery or carpets. I'm sure my children will soon make sure I get the opportunity to try it though. This doesn't discolour fabric and it doesn't damage the environment either - it is biodegradable like the soap nuts. The bar lasts for a long time too, we've been using it for a few weeks now and to look at the bar you wouldn't know it had been used.
Do check out the other products in the soapnuts range. They sell lots of organic, palm oil free washing products for both laundry and other purposes. I intend to try their shampoo and haircare range next, they even have a palm oil free conditioner.
Please note, the soapnuts and stain remover bar were sent to me free of charge for the purpose of this blog post. All views, opinions and images are my own.