If you could use only one detergent what would it be?

Sandy16January 29, 2012

Hello. I'm a laundry junky like everyone else here. I am trying to simplify my laundry products and wonder if any of you have found a single detergent that meets all of your laundry needs. Can it be possible? My current stash is embarrasingly huge. Persil or Mexican powder for whites, too many options to name for darks. Then there are the ones that leave everything soft and great smelling but do not clean so well. I thought it might be fun to find out if anyone has found laundry nirvana in a single product.

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sshrivastava

If I had to choose just one detergent, I would have to go with Tide TotalCare HE. It cleans well and clothes come out soft even without fabric softener. My second choice - second only due to price - is Persil Megaperls. I would have gladly included Vaska, but it doesn't clean very well. It's good on bath towels, beddings and hand washables, but that's about it.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 12:14PM
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livebetter

At this moment in time, the Miele Ultra Color powder formula.

I too have an embarrassingly huge assortment. Most of it because I was never quite happy with the results (you can trust me when I say I've tried almost everything out there including Persil).

Since I started using the Miele care products, I have NO desire to try anything else. That is HUGE!! LOL ...

They say the detergents are made to work in "harmony" with my Miele machine. Whatever the reason ... I'm so thrilled to finally be this content.

I do think it's important to have one for whites and one for color. It shocks me that in NA most detergents sold are really intended to keep whites looking good but not darks/colors. The Europeans have it right there (one for each).

Although, I'm not a fan of optical brighteners so, even though I have the Miele Ultra White, I often use the Ultra Color with added oxygen bleach and have great results. No stains and white whites.

I do still have some specialty products as I think they are absolutely necessary for certain items. I have Forever New to wash delicates with elastic/micro fibre, I have Miele Delicate for wool/silk and I have Miele Down wash.

Best of luck in your search to pare down ... it's not an easy one.

I've been giving away a fortune in products to friends/family. My mom just took all my Persil powder home (Megaperls color, white and sensitive). She likes the smell (which I never did) so she's thrilled. My step father is German so maybe it will remind him of home :)

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 12:20PM
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mara_2008

Do I hafta pick just one? (said in my best whiny child voice, lol)

I would have to pick just one per type of laundry I do:

Tide w bleach (HE powder) for white cottons and towels
ERA HE for darks and everyday clothes
Tide Total Care HE for delicates and dress clothes

Sorry I couldn't choose just one for everything. :)

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 4:37PM
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Sandy16

Livebetter - the persil scent is a bit strong but it is amazing when paired with lavender. I'm not into fabric softner but a lavender dryer sachet or some lavender essential oil on a cloth with persil is a happy place for me. I'll have to check out the Miele detergents now so this did not help. LOL!

Sshrivasta - I go out of my way to find loads for Vaska. If it would just remove some stains...

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 5:05PM
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livebetter

Sandy16, while Persil was stronger than I like, I also came to the conclusion that I just didn't like the smell. If I washed my kids' clothes and I could smell it on them I didn't like it.

While you'll get differing opinions, the Miele Care products suit my needs perfectly (for now). They clean really well and the smell is light and pleasant.

The Ultra Color powder is a "fresh fragrance of citrus fruits and lavender" while the Ultra White is a "fresh fragrance of flowers and fruit". The liquid color formula is a stronger scent (floral/fruit) but even it is light when dry and non offensive to my nose.

I'm not a big FS user, but I do enjoy the Miele one. It is very watery (typical for a European brand I think) and nicely scented. Miele calls it a fresh/natural fragrance (I think it's floral). Even when dry the items have a nice light scent. I usually use half to less than half of the recommended and it's perfect. Miele calls it more of a fabric conditioner than fabric softener.

I can't tell you how many products I've been through trying to find one that works well, has a nice light scent (I do prefer a light scent to no scent) and doesn't contain optical brighteners.

I really feel like I've found nirvana here - not to lead you down the addict path ... sorry about that but you asked :)

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 8:16PM
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Nunyabiz1

I do only use one detergent, Tide Advanced.
Though my wife will use Woolite once in awhile for delicate's.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 9:57AM
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Sandy16

Seems like Tide is getting a lot of love here.
Mara - 3 products would be downgrading for me. LOL!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 10:16AM
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gates1

Tide with bleach orignal scent powder first choice and Tide total care for the darks. I love Persil, but due to the cost and I dont think it cleans any better than Tide with bleach.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 1:40PM
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larsi_gw

If I had to choose just ONE, it would be Tide Total Care he. Love Persil, but one needs to use the Universal for whites and the color for darks and coloured items.

I also love the smell and Performance of Tide he with a touch of Downy liquid. Smells almost like the old April Fresh Downy!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 1:07AM
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livebetter

Shows how we're all so different. I hated Tide Total Care. I used a few times and couldn't do it again. The smell is overwhelming (more than Persil). It's currently in my give away pile looking for a new home.

Besides the smell I would want to know more about some of its ingredients (like the Polymers).

Polyacrylamide Quaternium Chloride
Polyethyleneimine Ethoxylate
Silicone Polyether

It also contains optical brighteners so wonder how that would fare on dark clothes over time.

Anyway, I wouldn't use it with its current scent, just curious.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 9:17AM
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Nunyabiz1

Here is the explanation of what those ingredients are.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ingredients by Function

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 10:02AM
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livebetter

Thanks @Nuyabiz1, I had read those already on the Canadian site. Guess I meant a more detailed explanation like what are they really coating the fibres with.

"lubricates the yarns" ... hmmm ...

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 10:36AM
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liriodendron

Cheer regular (non-HE) powder, for everything.

Or almost everything: excludes wool, silk, or down items which have their own special potions.

Have used said Cheer powder (in small, 1 T/load doses) exclusively for nearly two decades in my Euro Fls. Perfect cleaning, little fading (only from outdoor drying), no OBAs, with enzymes, extremely good rinsing, no lingering scent, and no scaling, build-up or mold in my Euro FL (Asko/Miele) machines.

This works with MY water chem., MY machines, MY stuff, and MY soiling (pretty extreme as this is a farm) and because I use almost hot (120F) to (195F) very hot temps for almost every load.

YMMV.

L.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2012 at 12:15PM
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elegantellie

I rarely post anything but I MUST share my opinion on this very important subject to me.... I could not live without "Simply Safe Brand" Fragrance and Dye Free Laundry Detergent! My girls crack and bleed from every other type of laundry detergent. I used to have to order Melaleuca because it would cause the least irritation to my daughter's skin. But simply Safe is like ten bucks a bottle and I only use a VERY little in every load (maybe 2 tablespoons in my High Eff)No need for fabric softener because Simply Safe is clear rinsing which allows all fillers to completely rinse from your fabric therefore causing the fabric to be non-ionic with no need for softener! It's truly a must have! They have another scented one too but I have only tried the unscented. It's changed our Laundry world!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2012 at 1:00PM
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Pat

Cheer regular powder for darks;
All Free liquid for wool and feather pillows;
Tide With Bleach powder for everything else.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2012 at 3:57PM
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Sandy16

I'm amazed at how many would go with Tide. I have to rinse a minimum of 3 times using 2 tbsp per load. I actually find the Mexican bagged powder rinsed better.

I don't know if I will ever get to a one detergent system. I don't think I'll ever have less than 2, one for darker, one for whites.

This is all adding to my must try list. Time to clean out the vetoed detetgents to make room for the new experiments!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2012 at 9:08PM
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wildchild

Sears Ultra Plus (dye and perfume free).

Cleans well,rinses well, moderately priced.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 12:40AM
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Cavimum

If I had to use [i]ONLY[/i] one detergent, it would be ALL HE "free" because it has no enzymes and no OXI type whiteners, and there is a substantial amount of wool items and dark colors in our laundry.

So if it has to be ONE, that would be it.

Here is a link that might be useful: link to this version of 'ALL'

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 8:17AM
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iowa19

I would probably never go with just one detergent, as others have commented, because of the difference in whites vs. colors. However, I could probably survive on Seventh Generation 4x liquid and just add sodium percarbonate for the white loads. Lots of enzymes, great cleaning power, no OBA's. I'm surprised more people don't have this on their list.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 4:57PM
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livebetter

@iowa19, I would have tried it if it was available in Canada - but it's not. I even tried to find it on a shopping trip to Buffalo, NY - no luck.

I have used their 2X liquid and the new powder version (wild lavender & citrus?) which I also had to purchase from the US as not available in Canada. They both do work well.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 5:29PM
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iowa19

@Livebetter, I'm half tempted to send you a bottle of SG 4x so you can try it. I've so enjoyed reading your (and Larsi's and Sstava's, etc) comments on this forum. You've all been so thorough and frank in the descriptions of your combined experiences. Thank you!!

I don't understand why SG doesn't have the full product line in Canada yet. Here in Chicago I can find it in all the Target stores. In fact, if I want to use any other detergent I have to sneak it behind my partner's back; he's convinced it's the least itchy product we've used.

If you come this way, make sure to hit Target.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 8:07PM
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livebetter

@iowa19, firstly - thanks for the "shout out"! I enjoy lively discussion about laundry ... LOL.

OMG ... decided to check the SG website on a whim and see if anything had changed. Unbelievable, looks like the 4X is finally coming to Canada. Hurray.

I will definitely try it (I've tried 'em all). Not sure I'll be able to get it soon but at least sometime by spring it looks like.

When I went to Buffalo in November I checked Target and Wegmans.

I don't know why the new powder isn't in larger distribution either.

Are you using the Free & Clear or the Geranium Vanilla?

Here is a link that might be useful: Seventh Generation - 4X liquid in Canada

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 8:59PM
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iowa19

That's wonderful news! It sounds as though you are pretty smitten with your Miele products at the moment, so I don't know how this will stack up, but I do feel good about the perceived greenness of the SG. Still run Persil washes to get the benefits of the washer protection agents.

I use the unscented version at the moment but am curious about the geranium vanilla. Better stop rambling about SG or I'll need to start a new thread.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2012 at 9:24PM
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mara_2008

Mara - 3 products would be downgrading for me. LOL!

Oh yeah, you're a serious laundry junkie, Sandy. ;)

Not sure who mentioned this, but I've never had a problem with Tide not rinsing out well, at all. Or any other detergent, for that matter.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 1:46AM
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Sandy16

I don't notice the Tide not rinsing well in regard to regular laundry but from my cloth diaper days I can assure you that if rinsed in warm or hot with higher water levels, there were still a ton of suds after 4 rinses. If rinsing in cold, nothing noticable. I have never been much of a fabric signer user. I just dislike the whole concept of washing my clothes then applying a coating of Goo to them. Anyway, even a small amount of softner would eliminate any suds. Residual fabric softner would cut down suds from the wash cycle as well. That's my theory anyway.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 10:38AM
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larsi_gw

@iowa19...livebetter and sstava and I are total laundry junkies. Glad you've enjoyed all the posts. Our Forum is great!

I've tried 2 bottles of the SG 4x liquid. On paper, it checks all boxes! Has a great enzyme combo, no obas, seemed to clean & rinse well and the scent was very "upscale day spa". I cannot explain though, why I do not love SG. I finished both bottles, so I didn't hate it...but I just never loved the way my laundry smelled or felt while using it. If I don't use Persil, Tide Total Care he liquid and Tide with a Touch of Downy he liquid are probably my favorites!

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 11:24AM
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linday12

Actually, I've been using a homemade detergent that has only 3 ingredients. It is very cheap and seems to clean fine. I found it on the Duggar family website.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 5:45PM
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Sandy16

Linday - My son made laundry and dw detergent for a project. I got really into it. If you sub STP from the paint section of your hardware store for the washing soda (the STP is like 97% washing soda) and add one part uniodized salt, the homebrew stuff is actually very good. The fun of home chemistry soon faded when I realized that clothes that sat for awhile got weird. Glad it's working for you!

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 7:30PM
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Sandy16

Linday - My son made laundry and dw detergent for a project. I got really into it. If you sub STP from the paint section of your hardware store for the washing soda (the STP is like 97% washing soda) and add one part uniodized salt, the homebrew stuff is actually very good. The fun of home chemistry soon faded when I realized that clothes that sat for awhile got weird. Glad it's working for you!

    Bookmark   February 4, 2012 at 2:08AM
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mara_2008

Sandy, I washed cloth diapers for years (several children)always with HOT water and Ivory Snow powder. Never used Tide on diapers. On pediatrician's recommendation, I used vinegar in the final rinse, not fabric softener. Diapers were soft and white and CLEAN. (I soaked them in a huge pail before washing, with one cup of borax and 1/4 cup clorox -- none in the wash). Two children had sensitive skin and this routine kept them free of rashes.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2012 at 1:19AM
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beti1948

Biokleen is the best laundry detergent I've found, bar none. Not tested on animals, no nasty chemicals, no fake fragrances, takes only one ounce per load (really) and is made right across the river from me in Vancouver, WA.

My clothes have seriously never been cleaner.

Here is a link that might be useful: Biokleen

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 10:53PM
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mihi

For me, and if I was willing to spend the bucks for it (which I'm not, it's just not worth it) it would be Persil Megapearls. But since other really good laundry detergents work great and are such a good value, it would be Gain powder for me if I had to choose just one. With one exception though, for really darks and blacks I'd want to use Woolite for these.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 10:28PM
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cj47_gw

I've used Tide Free and Gentle liquid for a few years, on everything. I add Oxiclean to towels and whites. The thought of using something else for darks never even occurred to me...until I started perusing this forum. LOL, now I'll have to poke around and see what everyone uses for their dark colors.

:-)

Cj

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 10:48PM
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entrenous

I love Method Fresh Air Scent, just 4 little pumps does great! It is such a small container and yet does 80 loads. I will never go back to those huge containers. Smells good, too.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2012 at 1:01AM
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herring_maven

beti1948: Biokleen is the best laundry detergent I've found, bar none. Not tested on animals, no nasty chemicals, no fake fragrances, takes only one ounce per load (really) and is made right across the river from me in Vancouver, WA.

My clothes have seriously never been cleaner.

Plus 1 and ditto all across the board.

We actually have both versions of the liquid Biokleen, the All-Temperature and the Cold Water; the only difference is that the All-Temperature is enzyme-free and (while not promoted as such) is de facto hypoallergenic. We use the All-Temperature for the majority of our wash loads, usually with warm wash and cold rinse. We do supplement each load with about 1/3 cup of 20 Mule Team borax, and for whitest whites, we further add a couple tablespoons of Ecover sodium percarbonate bleach, but the bleach is used only in white-only loads.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2012 at 6:39PM
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