Best non-fading soap/detergent?

sandylaineFebruary 22, 2009

I've looked thru the archives and thought I should just ask this again, since products do evolve. What have you all been using that is best for not fading clothes? I used to use dreft in my old top loader and I found out that clothes didn't fade! Now I have a FL and have been using Sears, and Tide, and now baby's clothes don't look as good (though clean) and son's fav black t-shirts are fading much more quickly... Help!

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Dreft is making an HE detergent now...I use Cheer for my colors.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 8:08PM
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I use Cheer too. I have also used Woolite if I'm washing a black that I think could fade or an expensive pair of jeans. Persil makes a detergent for blacks, but as you might imagine it's very expensive.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 11:57AM
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jonsgirl - would this HE Dreft be a powder?

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 10:56PM
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Sadly, no it's the liquid. I was still excited about it though, I've been bugging them for years to make an HE detergent. I don't have little ones anymore but I still like to use Dreft on my sheets and underthings.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 12:30AM
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Just thought I'd mention that I use regular Cheer powder even though I have an HE machine. I use almost all HE detergents but I wasn't happy with the Cheer liquid so I just use the powder carefully and have not had a problem.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 12:42AM
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You might try Tide Total Care, highly touted in the February 2009 issue of Good Housekeeping magazine. We'll probably give it a try when we need to buy more detergent.

Go to page 3 after you open the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Good Housekeeping Awards

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 3:28AM
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I see Tide Total Care is available in HE form but only as a powder. Maybe I'll try it and follow color loads with whites using powder at higher temperatures to reduce gunking risk. There seem to be a fair number of negative comments about its scent. I guess that's a see-for-yourself kind of thing.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 10:14AM
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Your best bet is to look for detergents that do not contain Optical Brighteners. Cheer HE and Tide Total Care HE contain them. Non-HE Cheer does not. Got that info from the company website and phone calls. I use either Cheer powder or a natural brand that doesn't contain OBA's, like Seventh Generation liquid (powder contains oxygen bleach)or Planet. Of course, I love Persil Color, but it's expensive. HTH, Todd

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 12:12PM
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I use Charlies soap without a problem. I just make sure that anything new that is colored is washed a few times by itself in cold water with white distilled vinegar. The vinegar makes the dye in the clothing stick better.

Charlies won't remove any set dye, only the loose stuff. Hence why I wash in vinegar first.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 3:46PM
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Thank you for the information about Cheer. Do you know if they have abandoned the "no optical brighteners" policy (with the exception of the "Darks" formula)?

Their new marketing campaign "brighter after just one wash" makes me think they have turned a 180 on this one.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 8:31PM
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chipshot-Wal-Mart has the Total Care in HE liquid. In fact I have never seen it in powder, yet.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 1:40AM
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I meant to say that I saw Tide Total Care is available in HE form but only as a liquid, borne out by a recent visit to Wegmans.

Does anyone know whether Kirkland HE powder contains optical brighteners?

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 9:56AM
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curiousshopper, I'm not sure, I emailed PG last week but was given a reply that was a bunch of proprietary information garbage. I will call tomorrow to find out. Will post any new info. I agree, it sounds dubious.
chipshot, Kirkland powder contains OBA's. It looks like their new natural liquid does not, cleans pretty well too. Also very low sudsing, unlike the regular liquids, that also contain OBA's.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 10:03PM
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Somebody better tell the airforce that cheer contains OB because their website states otherwise. It's two years old but I can't see them let this slip through- kinda important I would think.

Here is a link that might be useful: Optical brightners make ABUs dangerously easy to see

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 11:11PM
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I called the company the other day. CS rep stated it was just a packaging change. Therefore, as faqs on website state, non-HE Cheer formulas are OBA-free, HE formulas contain them.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 10:25AM
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Wow, I have been washing clothes for 15 years and this is the first time that I ever heard of OBAs. I feel quite stupid honestly.

I use Tide, so now I know why my clothes keep fading. I've now switched to Cheer liquid for dark colors. (I'll try the new Tide Total Care for my pastel dress shirts and see how that goes.)

Does OxyClean fade clothes as well?

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 10:29AM
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I have been using a lot of brands I can say Sears is not that cheap for big bottle - I don't use H.E brand wash machine and top loader at my house or laundry mat and second I find Gain to be have the most choices of smell and It seems to help with color. Cheer is not the best thing for my skin since it makes my makes my legs itch more when my mom would wash. I still use fabric softener to keep them smelling nice and I also figure out to keep the scent lasting a lot longer.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 2:45PM
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I've been using the Kirkland HE detergent for about 3 weeks and if I could return it, I would. It just recently dawned on me that I have more clothes now stained from clothes bleeding than I EVER have.

I've only had my FL for about 5 weeks and used All HE detergent before that and had no problems.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 3:15PM
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Talking about real fading, not the effects of optical brighteners, I believe that a non-fading detergent is one which neutralizes chlorine in the water. Consequently:

1) This isn't an issue if you have non-chlorinated well water, or if your water is treated to remove chlorine.

2) If your water does contain chlorine, then reduced detergent dosage could allow more fading.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 1:02PM
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Kimmers71 - Costco has a very generous return policy. You can return the Kirkland detergent. They even take food back that customers don't like. When I was shopping the other day, I saw a mattress set returned simply because the customer didn't like it.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 3:09PM
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Happymomof2kids: how much white vinegar do you put in the wash? Do you put it in the bleach compartment?


    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 11:52AM
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I use either All Free and Clear or Cheer Free. Finding Cheer isnt always easy for me; it seems Tide has a monopoly on the market in my neighborhood. Most of the time I can only get All Free and Clear. I found Tide was the worstÂall of their detergents really faded my clothes--fast. I found Tide HE takes the dye off dark clothes, but leaves the dirt and stains on lights like towels and sheets. Years ago I took a textile class, the professor was adamant we NOT use Woolite--she said the stuff was caustic for fibers.

I noticed since I stopped using detergents with perfumes and dyes my clothes don't fade as much. Allergies and psoriasis forced me to switch to perfume and dye free detergent; less fading of my clothing was an unexpected bonus.

I live in black: black jeans; black t-shirts; black slacks; black jackets; black warm-up suits; black sock; black everything. If itÂs not black, itÂs navy blue. I have at least 2 dozen black t-shirts and 12 pair of black jeans in regular circulation--and a couple dozen "faded" ones for back-up. Because I wear so much black, fading is very noticeable to me.

IÂm wearing a pair of deep (nearly black) navy jeans right now. IÂve washed them 4 or 5 of times (in All Free and Clear), yet they are still so dark you would think they were brand new.

I admit it took me awhile to get use to the absence of perfume. I used scented detergent and fabric softener for years; I associated the artificial scent with "cleanliness"Âwhen I was forced to make the switch I really missed the clean "smell" of my laundry:(

My "No Fade" Laundry Routine: (*I understand I have the luxury of time now that my kids are grown and I no longer work--not everyone has such luxury and/or the desire to put this much energy into the task of laundry.)

1) I wash my darks inside out.

2) I do not over load the machine; I only fill my machine one-half to three-fourths capacity. I ignore what the manufacture says about capacity, soak six pair of jeans in water and see for yourself how heavy they get. Sure, the machine can handle more than six pair of soaking wet jeans, but friction destroys fiber--itÂs the jeans that cannot handle the weight and friction of six pair of jeans. I place items loosely in the tub so nothing is balled up.

3) I Measure! Measure! Measure! I use the correct amount of detergent for the load; too much detergent will cause fading.

4) I shake each garment out before I place it in the dryer; this allows for more even drying as nothing is balled up, twisted up, or knotted up.

5) I do not over dry; I stop the machine before cycle is up and remove clothing when there is just a tad bit of moisture in the fabric and hang everything up dry the rest of way.

Note 1: Mineral content in water will make clothes fade. If you have "hard" water a cup of vinegar added to the wash cycle will dissolve the minerals if you donÂt have a water softener or if you water isnÂt "hard" enough to justify the expense of a water softener. But a cup of vinegar is for a full load, using a standard agitator machine; I donÂt know how much vinegar to use in a FL or HE TL machine.

Note 2: ShrinkageÂmy former textile profession told me most shrinkage of natural fibers occurs when clothing sits in the residual heat in dryer after the cycle is finished; so if time constraints donÂt allow you to remove clothing just before the cycle is complete; try to remove and cool clothing as soon as the cycle ends.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2009 at 12:02AM
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