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Updated: Nov 12, 2021

This blog provides a selection of DIY and readymade laundy products with safer ingredients and less packaging that more traditional options used today.

Please use the comment function to tell us how these solutions worked for you, and/or propose other options. A lot is happening in this field, and more products might become available.




Store options

It is tricky to find a product in store that avoids synthetic polymers, surfactants, fragrances, optical brighteners, and comes with minimum plastic. Most of the big brands, and even Ecover and Method, have issues with either ingredients or packaging. They often include surfactants without providing details. Here is a selection of products that disclose their ingredients, have been found to be safe and efficient.

  • Laundry detergent - Attitude: received good eco-reviews, discloses all ingredients, and those ingredients are safe – but only comes in one litre plastic bottles.

  • Fill -Biodegradable ingredients and refillable bottles. You can buy them from the Good Club and Milk&More, to be delivered to your doorstep.

  • Mulieres: discloses a list of safe ingredients, have different fragrances, lighter packaging but have no review yet – if you want to test and let us know.

  • Mangle & Wringer: made purely from 100% coconut oil soap, natural minerals and water softeners, comes in a biodegradable paper bag, has no scent and works well, provided that ferocious stains are dealt with in advance.

  • Laundry detergent sheets: new, lighter option, with minimum packaging, safe ingredients – but untested yet. Let us know if you do try them out: Simple Living Eco, from the Source or on line.

Store option – no detergent

The EcoEgg. Safe ingredients, simple to use: just mineral pellets that can be reused several times . When the clothing is heavily soiled, a separate stain remover is necessary (refer to stain removal section for ideas) – but isn’t thisthe case for most detergents? Mineral pellets should be changed after approximately 2 months of use, but it remains a cost-effective method.

DIY Detergent Powder

  • You need: 200gr Washing soda/sodium carbonate (different from baking soda, although not by much) + 200gr Borax Substitute (If unavailable, just double the washing soda) + 100 gr of natural soap (e.g. Castile) - if you want fragrance, choose a soap scented with essential oils. And a container with a secure lid – a glass jar is perfect.

  • How to make it: Grate the soap. Add washing soda and borax, mix well. Keep the laundry detergent in an airtight container out of the reach of children and pets. Just make what you usually need for three months; if your detergent turns hard or cakes up, it's best to discard it as the hard pieces likely won't dissolve well in the wash, and they could potentially leave soap residue on your clothes.

  • How to use it: Use one to two tablespoons per load. Problem solving: if your water is very hard, or if you use cold programs, you might have to add warm water to the mixture before placing it in the machine, to help dissolve it and avoid white residue being left on the clothes.

DIY Liquid Detergent

  • You need: 1 litre glass bottle + 100 gr natural soap (e.g. Castile) + 850gr/ml water + 50gr Bicarbonate of soda (Baking Soda) or washing soda + 25gr of Borax Substitute + 5ml essential oil

  • How to make it: Grate your soap. Bring the water to the boil. Turn the heat down, and add the grated soap and the baking soda. Don’t boil but whisk to combine and keep warm until the soap is fully dissolved. Remove from the stove, and mix with a hand mixer if needed. Leave until fully cold. The mixture should go very gloopy and thick. Add the essential oils. Mix. Poor into your container.

  • How to use: Shake before use. Use approx 120 ml per load. Keep away from heat and light. Will keep 6 months.




Use the DIY recipes for laundry detergents, with the appropriate program on your machine. And learn how to wash wool with Moral Fibres.




DIY - white vinegar

  • You need: a 500ml glass bottle + 500ml white vinegar + 30 drops essential oil of your choice

  • How to make it: fill your bottle with vinegar and add the essential oil.

  • How to use it: shake well and fill the fabric conditioner compartment of the drawer up to the line with the scented vinegar (50 to 100ml depending on the size of your machine and the hardness of your water). For a half load of washing, decrease the amount by half. It will also help keep your washing machine clean and descale it.

DIY - Citric acid

Citric acid also works as a fabric softener. Either add a spoonful of citric acid into the fabric-conditioner compartment of the washing machine. You can add filtered water to help dilute if it appears to be needed after your first attempt, and essential oils to add fragrance. If this works for you, you can prepare it in advance:

  • You need: a 500ml glass bottle + 30g citric acid + 60 gr filtered water + 35 drops of essential oil of your choice.

  • How to make it: open your windows! Slightly warm the water. Pour the citric acid and mix well to dilute the pellets. Fill your bottle when cold and add the essential oil.

  • How to use it: shake well before use. Add one tablespoon of the liquid in the fabric conditioner compartment.




To revive both whites and colors.

  • You need: Sodium percarbonate (or baking soda – but percarbonate is more efficient).

  • How to make it: nothing to do

  • How to use it: either add 2 spoonful to your detergent when you want to revive colors/white; or, for more serious help, dissolve 1/2 cup of sodium percarbonate soak in 5l of hot water; soak your laundry for 3 hours.

Buy sodium percarbonate (or Natural Oxygen Bleach) from Allavare, with 100% home compostable bags.

More info on Moral Fibres

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