Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Want to share some knowledge of eco products. Or have you heard about any new eco projects that you want to share with the world?
User avatar
theabsinthefairy
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 707
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:57 pm
Location: Auvergne, France

Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138112 theabsinthefairy
Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:21 am

Hi - I can't remember who - but someone said that they used soap nuts and I am considering getting some as they appear on our once a month lorry of special deals due this week.

Are they any good - how long do they last - are they worth the money - etc etc etc ........

Would appreciate your thoughts and feed back

thanks in advance

Monika
2010 is my year of projects - 365 days and 365 projects.

You can follow my progress on
absinthe fairy blog

my photos are avavilable here
absinthefairy

my shop is available here
mojaziemia

User avatar
Rosendula
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1743
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138135 Rosendula
Wed Jan 14, 2009 1:00 pm

I use soapnuts, but not all the time. If your clothes are really dirty or sweaty soapnuts don't always work on their own. Whites tend to go a bit gray after a while as well, because they don't bleach them. We live in a hard water area, and I think they work less well here because of that.

I had been wondering if they would help neutralize my soil if I broke down the used ones and put them on the allotment, but a little test with litmus paper :geek: showed me that soap nuts are actually slightly acidic. With that in mind, I now add a little vinegar to the wash to give them a boost, and that really helps. I'm wondering if the fact that they are slightly acidic is what stops them working on food spills on clothes, considering that food (except milk and eggs) are all acidic?? :scratch:
Rosey xx

User avatar
Thomzo
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 4274
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2007 1:42 pm
Location: Swindon, South West England

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138139 Thomzo
Wed Jan 14, 2009 1:20 pm

Hi
I use them but only on general coloured washes. I am highly sensitive to perfume and really struggle with washing powder or liquid, even with ecological powders, but I have never had any problems with clothes washed with soap nuts.

They seem to last for ages. You use four half-nuts in a wash and can use them up to four times. The biggest problem for me is remembering how many times I have used them.

They aren't really very good for heavily soiled clothes but perhaps soaking those or a pre-wash would do the trick.

Interestingly, I also use vinegar, but as a fabric conditioner. I find it works really well.

Overall assessment, great for coloured, lightly soiled clothes in a general wash.

Cheers
Zoe
Think globally, shop locally
Check out my blog at http://designedbyzoe.blogspot.com/
http://www.thomzo.co.uk

User avatar
Rosendula
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1743
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138144 Rosendula
Wed Jan 14, 2009 1:41 pm

What's your water like where you are, Zoe? I use 8 half shells, plus about a tablespoon of vinegar in the powder compartment and a similar amount in the fab.con. bit.
Rosey xx

User avatar
Helsbells
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 907
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 2:32 pm
Location: Berkshire
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138223 Helsbells
Wed Jan 14, 2009 9:41 pm

I use soap nuts and I really like them.
I have been using them for several months now, and we have just decided that we ought to wash everything in ecover once over because after a while there seems to be a bit of a build up (Of sweat and general gunk I suppose, although I havent noticed a smell, jsut a sort of waxy feel to the clothes)
But like I say this is after several moths, so we are doing everyting once in ecover then going back to the soap nuts.
Its really great being able to put them on the compost heap too. No wastage what so ever.

User avatar
Odsox
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4836
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 2:21 pm
Location: West Cork, Ireland

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138302 Odsox
Thu Jan 15, 2009 11:11 am

A big plus for soapnuts for some of us is that apparently the soapy water is beneficial to septic tanks, which is more than can be said for some commercially made stuff.
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

User avatar
hedgewitch
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1251
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 3:42 pm
Location: Alicante, Spain
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138333 hedgewitch
Thu Jan 15, 2009 12:35 pm

I'm a fan of Soap Nuts - been using them for around a year now. I do like to add some fabric softener in as well though because as well as being clean, I like my clothes to smell clean too. I did add a few drops of Essential Oil to make them smell nice but the flavours of EO I have were too sickly. I think Bergamot would be nice.
I use 8 Soap Nuts per wash and those 8 Nuts last for around 6 washes.
You can get a free sample from here
My Blog
My Website

Plant Seeds and sing songs.

User avatar
Silver Ether
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1284
Joined: Fri May 18, 2007 4:31 pm
Location: in amongs the roots of Mercia
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138393 Silver Ether
Thu Jan 15, 2009 4:56 pm

very odd I answered this yesterday but it looks like it went into the ether...

Well I been using them 2/3 years and love them ... old fella moaned about a lack of smell then complained of damp smell??? so I add oils and tell him we have gone back to liquid :flower:
http://silverether.wordpress.com/

http://www.folksy.com/shops/Silverether

You can be as self-asservative as you like, I said, just so long as you do what you're told.' Esme Weatherwax.

User avatar
theabsinthefairy
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 707
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:57 pm
Location: Auvergne, France

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #138474 theabsinthefairy
Fri Jan 16, 2009 10:59 am

Thank you everyone for your replies.

I went ahead and got some yesterday - but have not used them yet.

I mostly wash gardening clothes so dirty and sweaty and the castoffs from my almost a teenager daughter which are not dirty at all, and then bedding, but I try to hang everything outside to air even if it does not dry (I tend to dry over a ceiling mounted airer over thr Rayburn so most things smell of wood smoke anyway!) so hopefully that should solve any 'smell' issues.

Monika
2010 is my year of projects - 365 days and 365 projects.

You can follow my progress on
absinthe fairy blog

my photos are avavilable here
absinthefairy

my shop is available here
mojaziemia

User avatar
the.fee.fairy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4635
Joined: Fri May 05, 2006 5:38 pm
Location: Jiangsu, China
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #141457 the.fee.fairy
Wed Feb 04, 2009 1:41 am

I tried soapnuts, but i didn't like them.

I didn't find that my clothes were very fresh after washing. I also had a think about the air miles involved. Soapnuts tend to come from India, so they've travelled quite a way.

Now i use Bio D - its a british company so the air miles are less.

User avatar
Odsox
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4836
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 2:21 pm
Location: West Cork, Ireland

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #141475 Odsox
Wed Feb 04, 2009 9:52 am

the.fee.fairy wrote:Now i use Bio D - its a british company so the air miles are less.

Fair enough on not liking soap nuts, but have you considered that air miles is not necessarily the only factor ?
Bio D is 30% Zeolite which has to be mined out of the ground and is therefore a finite resource and possibly comes from Turkey.
Also contains Sodium Carbonate, Sodium Sulphate, Sodium Metasilicate & Sodium Perborate, all of which have to be manufactured.
Soap nuts on the other hand come from trees.
It might be more relevant to compare energy input per kilo than "air miles"

A quote from their fact sheet at http://www.ecotopia.co.uk/cmscontent/do ... powder.pdf

SKIN CONTACT
Mildly aggressive to skin.
EYE CONTACT
Alkaline powder can cause permanent eye damage.
INGESTION
If taken orally internal damage can result.
INHILLATION
Remove operative to well ventillated area and seek medical
attention.

Sorry ... got out of the wrong side of the bed this morning :lol: :lol:
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

User avatar
hedgewitch
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 1251
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 3:42 pm
Location: Alicante, Spain
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #141520 hedgewitch
Wed Feb 04, 2009 7:53 pm

the.fee.fairy wrote: Soapnuts tend to come from India, so they've travelled quite a way.


I keep hoping I'll find a Seed and then I could grow a Soapnut Tree!
How cool would that be!!
:flower:
My Blog
My Website

Plant Seeds and sing songs.

User avatar
Thomzo
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 4274
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2007 1:42 pm
Location: Swindon, South West England

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #141527 Thomzo
Wed Feb 04, 2009 9:10 pm

Rosendula wrote:What's your water like where you are, Zoe? I use 8 half shells, plus about a tablespoon of vinegar in the powder compartment and a similar amount in the fab.con. bit.


Hi Rosendula
Sorry it took me a while to reply, I missed your post earlier for some reason.

I live in a VERY hard water area but I use an Ecoflow water softner so my water is about average I guess.

I am going to try the vinegar in the wash -that sounds such a good idea.

Zoe
Think globally, shop locally
Check out my blog at http://designedbyzoe.blogspot.com/
http://www.thomzo.co.uk

User avatar
the.fee.fairy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4635
Joined: Fri May 05, 2006 5:38 pm
Location: Jiangsu, China
Contact:

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #142170 the.fee.fairy
Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:08 am

No problem.

I prefer to have a powder for the machine. I tried soaking the soapnuts in different oils but never quite got a clean smell on my clothes. I too was hoping for a seed...i've got a bag of them somewhere. Might have to hunt through it in the hope that there's a seed lurking somewhere.

User avatar
Elizabeth
Barbara Good
Barbara Good
Posts: 165
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Okehampton, Devon

Re: Soap Nuts - tried and tested - and verdicts?

Post: #143208 Elizabeth
Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:51 pm

I was struggling with deciding between soap nuts and ecoballs....

We were in the Oxfam shop at the weekend and they were selling ecoballs - so we took the plunge. Have washed the sheets, done a dog blankets wash and a coloured wash too. All fine at the moment and smell fresh (just waiting to see if that is the left over ecover).

Probably not do my hubbies running kit - 'cause that pongs :silent:
Elizabeth

Remember! Turn off, when not in use

http://www.gardenersclick.com/


Return to “Eco Products and Innovations”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests