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For Cleaner Clothes...Use Less Detergent

Find out why cutting back on the laundry soap will get your clothes cleaner.

By Real Simple Magazine Apr 10, 2012 6:34PM
Front-loading washing machine
It might seem counterintuitive, but using less soap will actually help get your clothes, towels, and sheets cleaner. 


Why is that? Because excess suds in the machine can help oil, bacteria, and odors reach new places in your machine—places that the rinse cycle might not wash out. Plus, extra soap can build up in clothing, making them look dingy.

Follow the amount recommended by the machine's manufacturer, usually about 1/2 capful.


Get more laundry tips:
21Comments
Apr 17, 2012 11:20AM
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Geez Scarlett31. Having a bad day?  There was no mention of tree hugger or even an implication of it. It was talking about getting your clothes cleaner not about making you walk around dirty!  BTW thanks for recycling YOUR nasty items. Imagine if you had the audacity to actually pick up a soda can that someone else drank out of. EEEEWWWW
Apr 17, 2012 11:58AM
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Also, stop with the Downey and dryer sheets.  Use plain white vinegar (the smell disappears almost immediately) for rinsing; it gets the soapy residue out of your clothes and leaves them soft.
Apr 17, 2012 10:39AM
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This actually makes sense to me...and saves money on detergent! Smile
Apr 17, 2012 2:22PM
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I use cloth diapers for economical reasons.  (I love it - colorful diapers rock!)  When washing cloth diapers, you are only supposed to use half the recommended amount of detergent, at most.  My diapers are always clean, white, and don't smell.  If that small amount of detergent manages to get dirty diapers clean, then you can certainly clean your normal clothes with less detergent as well.
Apr 17, 2012 1:19PM
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Didn't sound to me like this had anything to do with hugging a tree. Just getting your clothes cleaner for less. 

I've always used a little less than the recommended amount of detergent. I never thought our clothes needed all that soap and I want to rinse out as much of it as possible. I think it's better for our skin and for our clothing in the long run.

BTW, I don't dig around in the trash for my recyclables. I just rinse the containers out when they're empty and put them in the recycle bin. 
Apr 17, 2012 12:47PM
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This is good advice.  How many times have I thought my washing was done, only to find soap suds still in the clothing, then had to rinse again.  I will try this!
Apr 17, 2012 9:51PM
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Less is more...thats what i tell my wife!
Apr 17, 2012 5:51PM
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The new front-facing door washers (as pictured above) are supposed to use less,  according to the instructions.
If you have visible suds as shown above,  you're definitely doing it wrong.

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