Homemade Laundry Detergent
Saving in the Laundry Room
Clotheslines for the Frugal Soul
Do the more expensive laundry detergents like liquid Tide® tend to preserve color in clothes better than the cheaper detergents like Era® or All®?
I always use cheap detergents, both liquid and powder. The only time I notice fading is when I hang clothes on the clothesline. To combat fading when using the clothesline, I always hang the clothes inside out and try to use ample pins to hang pants and shirts evenly. I hang my husband's good work clothes inside on the porch or in the shade to prevent fading. I see no reason to spend extra for detergent, especially if the clothing is good/decent quality to begin with. Whether bought new or second hand, decent clothing is something that pays for itself. Cheaply made discount clothing never fails to let me down.
I refuse to buy the premium detergents. I know some people swear by Tide®, but in my opinion, even with sale pricing and coupons, it's just more than I want to spend on soap. I think the trick to keeping colors "true" is washing in cold water (on delicate if required) and air drying whenever possible. I started cold water washing and air drying years ago to save money and found that our clothing lasted much longer overall.
Deb from Chantilly, VA
I always buy All® when it is on sale. When loading clothes in the washer, don't overload the machine. I have found that overcrowding a washer causes clothes to wear faster and fade. Use cold or lukewarm water for colors. I still use hot for sheets, underwear, and towels. Adding a cup of white vinegar to the rinse water every few days removes excess soap from clothes and prevents color fading. I also hang items from the dryer after 20 minutes on a low heat setting to prevent fading. I always turn jeans and shirts inside out when washing to prevent fading in washer.
A long time ago, I read in "Consumer Reports" that Tide was the best laundry detergent at getting clothes clean. I've been brand loyal ever since. I stock up when there are sales and coupons. I also use only a small amount for each load. I probably use about a third of cup for a large load and less than a quarter cup for small loads. A big jug from Costco goes a long way.
I personally use homemade and love it. Tide® is harsh on my skin. I had an allergic reaction once, and they told me it was from the detergent. All® and ERA® are both good. Gain® smells the best of any, but they all clean about the same. I was never brand loyal and used whatever brand I had a coupon for and or was the cheapest. I switched this year to homemade, and it is the least expensive and cleans just as well. I have found that my eczema is better this summer than ever, and I think it is from the lack of harsh chemicals in detergents.
We don't use Tide® because it is too expensive. We feel that they are not selling detergent, but they are selling their name. Many other liquid detergents work well and cost a fraction of what Tide® sells for.
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