When I about five or six months pregnant, I went to a bazaar where I met someone selling laundry detergent that’s supposed to be environmental-friendly (no dust particles after washing and drying + it’s locally produced), uses mild surfactants, and more importantly, has no scent.
No scent for me is very, very important because prior to using this brand, we were using a popular laundry brand that’s available in every market, and every once in a while, I would ask Daday (our household genius) to please repeat the washing because there’s a weird smell (probably from the drying) and I couldn’t stand it.
Anyway, she was selling the laundry detergent for PHP 100/ kilogram so I decided to buy one and give it a try. I asked Daday to please make a comparison in terms of how the laundry powder feels in her hands, how it cleans, if we more or less consume the same amount (cause they could be alike in terms of the number of kilos, but one brand could be more efficient/ potent than the other), and how our clothes react to it.
After testing it for a week, I’m so happy she gave nothing but positive feedback: the laundry powder feels a lot less harsh on her hands, does the same cleaning, consumes the same amount, and is gentle on our clothes. I decided to switch to it ever since. The good news is….I swear, I’ve had no “weird-smelling clothes” issues ever since we switched! No scent apparently was the secret. No repeating of washing and drying = less consumption (time, effort, and cost wise) and less impact on the environment! Oh by the way, we don’t use fabric softeners at all. We just use that product.
That moment we decided to switch was the moment I also started thinking about what I’ll use for my baby’s clothes. I have to look for laundry detergents that are gentle enough for my baby’s clothes! Actually, I believe the brand we are using is already gentle enough. As much as I want to divulge the product, they are no longer active (they were when I first posted this, but I deleted the link here as an update). We have been told for months that they would produce again, but up to now, they still don’t have their promised stocks…
Anyway, here are my other finds (words rephrased or retyped from their own descriptions of their products):
1. CYCLES MILD LAUNDRY DETERGENT (FOR BABIES)
Harsh chemicals that are present in regular laundry detergents may actually cause allergy, irritation and dryness to your baby’s skin. Cycles Mild Laundry Detergent is free from harsh chemicals (no dyes | no optical brighteners | no enzymes | no fabric softeners | no bleach), specifically formulated to suit baby’s delicate skin; made from hypoallergenic and baby-friendly ingredients that are kind on your baby’s naturally sensitive skin.
- Specially made for babies
- Verified hypoallergenic
- No harsh chemicals
–This brand is available in many supermarkets and groceries nationwide (store locator HERE).
-The ingredients are not listed in their box (except for the Stain Soaker), but I asked for it and they replied, so here are ingredients of Cycles Mild Laundry Detergent: Sodium Sulfate | Sodium Carbonate | Sodium Aluminosilicate | Linear Alkylbenzene Sulfonic Acid (LABS) | Sodium Coco Sulfate | Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Sodium Laureth Sulfate | C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate | Sodium Silicate | Carboxymethylcellulose Sodium MV | Cocamide DEA | Fragrance | Peg-7 Glyceryl Cocoate | Disodium EDTA
–They had a residual test done by SGS concluding that compared to other commercial laundry detergent brands in the market (PS: Those brands are not in this list I made), Cycles leaves almost no residue (especially their liquid form). They sent me a copy of this one.
-A dermal patch test was also conducted with SGS and has clinically proven that Cycles is hypoallergenic on infants.
-It contains SLS, SLES, Sodium Aluminosilicate, Peg-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, and fragrance
Cycles Mild Laundry Detergent Powder, 500 g, SRP 148.00
Cycles Mild Laundry Detergent Powder, 1 kg, SRP 272.00
2. LIQUID LAUNDRY WASH FOR BABIES
Many commercial laundry detergents contain brighteners and dyes that stick to the fabric and leave harsh chemical residues on baby’s clothes and sheets. Tiny Buds is made with natural cleaning agents that are biodegradable and leave no chemical residues. It is a safe choice to remove stains and odors from baby’s clothes, sheets, and cloth diapers without irritating delicate skin. It is even advisable to be used for garments of kids and family members with sensitive skin.
- Uses natural ingredients (natural, mild formula)
- Guaranteed safe for sensitive skin
- No harsh chemicals
- Lathers well, easy-rinse formula
- Biodegradable, No Chemical Residues
- Free from SLS and Parabens
- No Optical Brighteners
- Odor-free even without sun-drying
- Machine and Hand-wash Safe (cloth-diaper safe, color safe)
Newborn Liquid Laundry Wash, 850 mL, SRP 250.00
-This brand is available in many supermarkets and groceries nationwide (store locator HERE).
-They also list their ingredients: Water | Coconut-derived Extracts | Natural Salts | Preservatives | Fragrance. If I am not mistaken, Tiny Buds is also locally-made!
-It contains fragrance (and not declared whether fragrance is synthetic or not).
-They also have a powder version, but I don’t have one, so I’m not sure what the ingredients are.
3. HAPPYGANICS (BABY ALL-NATURAL LAUNDRY DETERGENT)
Happyganics is a brand designed in Singapore and made in the USA that is all natural and biodegradable. They contain no SLS, no optical brightening agents, no phosphates, no chlorine bleach, no synthetic fragrances, and no coloring agents.
- Hypoallergenic (prevents skin irritation and protects sensitive skin)
- 99.9% anti-bacterial sterilization using natural disinfectant, eliminates harmful germs and odors leaving laundry fresh even when dried indoors
- Ultra-concentrated with excellent cleaning powder (use one small 15g scoop for one 5kg load or 45 liters of water)
- Low suds, suitable for front or top loading machines
- Will not leave residue that cause fabrics to be stiff and irritating
- Specially formulated to work well on cloth diapers, baby clothes, covers and rag dolls
- Great for adult laundry, too!
Happyganics Baby All Natural Laundry Detergent, 150 g, SRP 249.00
Happyganics Baby All Natural Laundry Detergent, 900 g, SRP 990.00
Happyganics Baby All Natural Laundry Detergent, 1.5 kg, SRP 1390.00
-They list their ingredients: Sodium Sulfate (flow agent derived from coconut oil) | Alkyl Polyglycocide (non-ionic surfactant, derived from coconut and palm kernel oil) | Sodium Chloride (aka table salt) | Sodium Carbonate (aka Baking Soda mined in Wyoming, USA) | Sodium Metasilicate (builder derived from quartz and soda ash)
-Since it’s fairly new here in the Philippines, it’s only currently available in two stores:
The Parenting Emporium and The Green Grocer.
-Also, it contains palm oil, which you may or may not support due to its relation to deforestation.
-You may choose the get the natural version, but they also have a version with lavender scent. The good news though is that it uses pure lavender essential oil (not synthetic; more than 95% of the chemicals in synthetic fragrances are derived from petrochemicals, meaning they’re obtained from petroleum and/or natural gas).
4. SMART STEPS BABY LAUNDRY DETERGENT/ BAR SOAP
Regular detergents can leave residue and strip babies’ clothes off their softness. Smart Baby Steps Baby Laundry Detergent (powder and liquid form) and Baby Laundry Detergent bar reduce the residue left behind on clothes which prevents skin dryness and irritation. Like regular strength, they have their own powerful stain-lifters that fight tough dirt and stain. They are clinically-proven safe and ultra mild for your baby’s delicate skin.
- For sensitive skin 0-3 years
- No Dyes | No Optical Brighteners | No Enzyme | No Bleach
Smart Steps Baby Laundry Detergent (powder), 450 g, SRP 87.00
Smart Steps Baby Laundry Detergent (powder), 900 g, SRP 164.00
Smart Steps Baby Laundry Detergent, (liquid), 900 mL, SRP 174.00
Smart Steps Baby Laundry Detergent (liquid), 1.5 L, SRP 279.00
Smart Steps Baby Laundry Detergent Bar, SRP 34.00
-They’re available in many supermarkets and groceries nationwide (store locator HERE).
-They also list their ingredients:
* For the bar: Sodium Palmitate | Coconut Oil | Fragrance | Titanium Dioxide | Sodium Laureth Sulfare (SLS)| PEG 200 | Etidronic Acid | Tetrasodium EDTA | Pentaerythritol Tetrakis (3-5-di-tert-butyl-4-hydroxyhydrocinnmate)
* For the laundry detergent (powder and liquid form): Plant-derived surfactants | Mild Fragrance (not sure this list is complete but they’re the only ingredients at the back of their packaging)
-They contain fragrance (not mentioned whether synthetic or natural) for the powder and liquid form, SLS, PEG 200, and Titanium Dioxide for the bar.
5. NATURE TO NURTURE LIQUID LAUNDRY DETERGENT
- Safe for babies and ideal for sensitive skin
- Suitable for all types of laundry-even cloth diapers and delicates (perfect for the whole family)
- Leaves no residue
- No fragrance, enzymes, phosphates, optical brighteners, chlorine, and clear of colorants
- No SLS, SLES, phtalates, parabens, glycol, dyes, phosphates, DEA, formaldehyde, and caustics
Nature to Nurture Liquid Laundry Detergent, 1000 ml, SRP 279.00
-They list their ingredients, which for me are the best: Aqua | Plant-derived surfactant | Citric Acid | Sodium Bicarbonate (aka baking soda) | Sodium Chloride (aka table salt) | Aloe Vera L. Extract | Sodium Benzoate
-It comes in liquid form which I feel means less processing was done (more natural and raw than having to go through the procedure of making it powderized).
-It is locally made!
-Can’t really think of any yet, except that while they have a relatively good distribution (store locator HERE), they’re still not as visible as the other brands (especially outside Metro Manila).
UPDATE: Okay, there is something challenging in their liquid detergent. We brought it with us in our trip to the US, and it solidified in the cold weather. So each time we had to use it, we would have to run hot water over the bottle first. However, the good news is…they now have a powder version! And supposedly, they’ve reformulated their liquid detergent to make it stand all kinds of weather. Wait, not sure if they have or they are still in the process of reformulating. But anyway, for Philippine weather, we’ve had no problems with the liquid version.
6. HUMAN NATURE NATURAL POWDER/ LIQUID DETERGENT
Human Nature’s natural detergent is non-drying on hands, biodegradable and 100% free from harmful chemicals, keeping you and our seas happy. It also leaves your clothes smelling clean and fresh with no harsh chemical residue or fabric stiffness. No need for fabric conditioners. Tough on dirt, gentle on the earth!
- No phosphates, chrlorine, bleach, dyes, enzymes, petroleum, synthetic fragrance, optical brighteners, harmful chemicals
Human Nature Natural Powder Detergent, 1 kg, SRP 199.75
Human Nature Natural Liquid Detergent, 950 mL, SRP 299.75
-They’re widely available nationwide (store locator HERE).
-They list their ingredients:
*For the powder: Cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, aqua (water), sodium coco fatty alcohol sulfate (coconut-derived), sodium hydroxide, sodium carbonate, potassium cocoate (coconut-derived), decyl glucoside (vegetable-derived), sodium lactate
*For the liquid: aqua (water), sodium coco fatty alcohol sulfate (coconut-derived), potassium cocoate (coconut-derived), ethanol (sugarcane-derived), sodium lactate, decyl glucoside (vegetable-derived), sodium carbonate, Citrus sinensis (orange) essential oil, glycerin (vegetable-derived), citric acid, fragrance (all-natural), phytic acid (rice bran-derived)
-It’s not exactly targeted towards babies but for the whole family. Best to study the ingredients and see if it’s acceptable to you for your baby’s laundry.
-The liquid form comes with a citrus scent. However, it is derived from orange essential oil, so it’s natural.
- I have not yet done a thorough comparison of all the laundry detergent brands for babies to see which works best for my baby’s clothes nor which brand is most efficient in terms of consumption. I have only used a few brands from the above-mentioned to wash my clothes before my baby’s arrival. That said, as of writing, I have not tried ANY on things like pee and poo stains. I encourage you to try them yourself to see which one is most acceptable to you cost-wise, ingredient-wise, and consumption (time and effort)-wise. Oh, and I believe the convenience of store locations matter a lot, too! You can always order online, but when calculating the overall cost, remember, shipping is an extra fee (well, so is the parking fee and private or public transportation fare if you have to go far just to buy a detergent).
- I honestly don’t think you need to use fabric conditioner. I’ve had my son’s clothes for the first three months washed already, and none of them needed any more softening.
- For the pros and cons, they are my personal opinions. They don’t have to be yours. I encourage you to do your own research. For the chemicals and ingredients, you may head on to THIS legitimate website to learn more about them. Just type in the ingredient and you’ll find information on its overall hazard and concerns. I have written a blog about it before which you may find HERE. If you cannot find it there, there’s always google. Just look for reliable links.
Did I miss other brands? Let me know your suggestions!