Most of my laundry habits are very green. I will say the heavy loads with things like towels, bedding and underwear are normally washed on hot, this is only two loads a week and it's better for allergies and germs. I do make sure I wash full loads, I don't over dry the clothes (we have a lot of allergies so line drying doesn't really work), and I use eco-friendly products, this is the main reason I wanted to write this post.
EcoYogini said she soapnuts didn't work for her, well that's what I use so I wanted to talk about them.
So first off, what are soapnuts? As confusing as this is, they aren't nuts, they are berries. This is good news for those with nut allergies. The berries contain saponins, which is what makes the soap. They are great for HE and front loading washers because they don't create suds. They are also about as natural as it gets and you can get them plastic free. Oh and did I say, they are super cheap per load?
A common mistake that is made, when using soapnuts, is they must have hot water to release the saponin. So you can throw them straight in a load if you are using hot water but if you are using cold water they won't work. To use them in cold water you must make a liquid soap out of them.
This is quite simple, you boil 4 cups of water, turn off heat, throw in 6-8 soapnuts, cover and leave overnight. In the morning strain out the soapnuts (and compost them) and store in some container with a lid. If you aren't going to use it in a day or two be sure to store in the fridge as it doesn't have a preservative and can grow mold. Some people freeze theirs in ice cube trays and just throw in an ice cube with each load.
You can even add essential oils to the liquid if your want a scented soap. The soap can be used for other things as well. I haven't tried it yet but some people use it as shampoo. You can use it to soak laundry as well.
Soapnuts may not be for everyone but they are worth a try. You can get a small sample size package from LaundryTree so there is little risk.
So for people that have used soapnuts, what are your thoughts?