Your Clean Laundry Routine Figured Out

No worries, you can thank us later.

By: Dani

You know you’re an adult when you actually look forward to doing laundry. Or maybe we’re just weirdos?

We take special pleasure in doing our laundry with luxury detergent. And to us, modern luxury is synonymous with things like clean, nontoxic, all-natural, innovative, and effective. In other words, we don’t consider a product luxurious unless it’s good for our health, sustainable for the environment, doesn’t contribute to the unnecessary harm and torture of animals, and actually works. That, and, of course, beautiful packaging. I mean, who are we kidding?

To be honest, before we came across The Laundress’ Classic Detergent on Netaporter we had no idea that luxury detergents were even a thing. And furthermore, we couldn’t care less about any chemicals that were in the detergents we used as long as our clothes were clean and smelled good, we were fine. We were totally unaware of how toxic typical detergents are and how much they can reek havoc on your health. But once we tried a liquid detergent sans chemicals, we were hooked and went on a rampant Pinterest/Google search for more clean detergents to try out along with all the like fabric softener, dryer sheets, and bleach alternatives. So if you’ve been thinking about switching to a cleaner laundry routine, you’ve come to the right place.

Liquid detergent

Typically, green detergents lack the stain-fighting and odor-eliminating enzymes that give many standard detergents (think Persil or Tide) their power. But, trust us, there are actually a good selection of clean detergents that perform just as good as mainstream detergents. And they smell better!

Three things to remember when switching over to a non-toxic liquid detergent: First, make sure you sort your clothes properly, meaning separate your white from darks from your lights. Very important. Number two, use the right amount of detergent. (Just take a look at the instructions on the label.) And last, never overload your washing machine. This way, you will get the best results. With standard detergents you can get away with a lot of poor laundering habits, but once you eliminate all the chemicals, you’ll need to pay a bit more attention to ensure your clothes get the best cleaning.

If you got a chance to read our post on how to make your clothes last forever (an essential read for all minimalists), then you know how much we love The Laundress’ products. Though our favorite product from their range is their Wash and Stain Bar, which we’ll get to later, their Signature Detergent is also fantastic. This ultra-concentrated liquid detergent is one of top picks, both for performance and scent. It’s formulated to whiten, brighten, and preserve color while removing stains without any petroleum, phosphate, phthalates, and artificial color. After drying, you’re left with a classic clean-laundry smell – a blend of lily of the valley and jasmine with sweet musk. We especially love washing our bed and bath linens with this detergent because the scent goes perfectly. BTW, still dying to try their detergent in the Le Labo Rose and Santal 33 scents.

Another great luxury option is L’eaundry. The scent of their detergents is divine. We’ve tried all three scents, but Asian Ginger Flower is our favorite. The bergamot and black pepper notes are so exotic and warm. We especially love using it on our bed sheets and bath towels because the smell lingers for so long. Oh, and underwear! Usually when we do a regular load of our clothes we use a more basic detergent (typically unscented) like the Honest Detergent or and mix it a top-full of the into the washer. A little definitely goes a long way, which is perfect since it is very expensive. Plus, it’s aesthetically pleasing. So worth the money, though (if you have it).

Don’t worry. Not all green detergents are super expensive. The Better Life Liquid Detergent in Lavender Grapefruit is another one of our top picks. It’s formula is 4X concentrated and compatible for HE and standard machines. It does a great job of getting rid of dirt and stains, brightening, refreshing and leaves laundry surprisingly soft. All of Better Life’s cleaning products are free of artificial dyes, alcohol, synthetic fragrances, sulfates, petrochemicals, phthalates, and other nasty stuff.

Powder detergent

Biokleen’s Premium Plus Laundry Powder is pretty impressive. Just like all the other non-toxic detergents we’ve tried you don’t need much product, which is always a plus. All of Biokleen’s laundry products are triple concentrated to reduce packaging, waste and energy, so you legit only need one ounce per load. The genius behind their formula (which contains no materials listed by the ACGIH as hazardous, including phosphates, chlorine, ammonia, petroleum solvents, butyl, glycol ether, brighteners, SLES, EDTA and DEA) is that it contains enzymatic stain lifters and oxygen bleach to really get your whites whiter and your colors brighter. The citrus scent is subtle and not overpowering.

Bleach alternative

We love to give our laundry an extra boost, especially our whites, even if there are no obvious stains or apparent odors. The Laundress make a brilliant Bleach Alternative, a chlorine-free, nontoxic, biodegradable, and fragrance-free powder that safely removes dirt, stains, and odors. Best part is that it’s safe for colors. We add it to every single wash. The fact that you can also use this to clean your entire home – floors, tiles, sinks, and surfaces – makes it completely worth the splurge.

Similar to this is the Biokleen Oxygen Bleach Plus, which contains natural fabric and water conditioners, grapefruit seed extract, and special detergent boosters that fight stains, mildew and corrosion. Bonus is that it works on many household stains, including carpet stains. We usually alternate between both formulas or just mix the two together.

Tip? Best way to get the most out of any of these options is to let your items soak anywhere from a half hour to three hours, depending on how bad/old the stain is and how thick the material is. That way, the product has time to actually lift the stain from the fabric.

Dryer sheets

Mrs. Meyers make the best smelling dryer sheets we ever ever tried. Period. Go try them.

Stain/odor remover

Biokleen wins again here. Their Bac-Out Stain And Odor Remover is a must-have. No joke, this stuff works amazingly. Old stains, new stains, superficial stains, serious stains, it works on them all. And we especially love that it’s in a spray bottle. It’s so convenient, and this way you can use it on things like curtains and carpeting and rugs, etc.

If you’re hand-washing a few items, we love the Wash and Stain Bar by The Laundress. You can literally see stains disappear before your eyes. So satisfying! They also have a liquid version of this formula, the Stain Solution, which is highly concentrated and perfect for adding to your cycle. Another effective way of removing stains is to do what our mother always told us: add a tablespoons of a white vinegar to the wash cycle. The Laundress make a Scented Vinegar with fresh, clean notes of bergamot, thyme, eucalyptus, lavender, and ylang-ylang that take away that repulsive acidic odor.

Oh, and bonus – sprinkle a little of the Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Laundry Scent Booster before you start your cycle. Seriously, just do it.

Fabric softener

The Laundress Fabric Softener in No. 10 dominates this category. Not only is their highly concentrated (up to 16 washes), plant-derived formula completely allergen-free, it also decreases drying time, reduces wrinkles, and eliminates static cling. The scent? A rich and sophisticated blend of sultry spice, fresh powder notes and warm musk. In other words, perfect.


As always, we’ve curated an edit of our favorite clean laundry products. You can shop them below. Oh, and like what you see? Sign up to receive updates straight to your inbox: Sign up here! 

**FTC: This post is not sponsored. No monetary compensation was received for this post, however some products were sent to us. Opinions are 100% our own, of course. This post also includes affiliate links which help to sustain our publishing activities and helps to cover operating costs, but you are in no way obligated to use them.**

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