When I was pregnant I got a few gems of advice from my friends who had already had kids. This is how I found out about the life-changing magic of soap nuts.
How had I never heard of this amazing nut that is essential tide pods that grow on trees? While Anna has imparted much wisdom to me over the years – this one is the most tangible. We were already trying to find ways to make the switch to natural cleaning but were intimidated by making our own soaps and jaded by the clever world of “natural” cleaning product marketing.
Soap nuts (also known as soap berries) are native to India so being on this side of the world didn’t make it harder to source them, in fact it probably make it easier – and definitely cheaper! For $9 US, I bought a bag of soap nuts that lasted us from the week before she was born to 9 months old – that’s a ton of laundry, since we used them for our typical washing needs but also a constant flow of dirty diapers. Poopy diapers come out clean. They work.
How to Use Soap Nuts:
If you are washing with cold water, put 4-6 fresh soap nuts into the cloth bag, tie it tightly and soak the bag in hot water. This releases the soap. Throw the water into the washer with the bag and wash the load like you would normally. You can use soap nuts for 4-8 washes. Soak them in hot water before each wash for the best results. When they really start to break down or your clothes don’t seem as fresh, it’s time to switch to a new batch.
The company in Thailand that our soap nuts came from, Green Doiler, is awesome – they also make a variety of soap nut and effective microorganism-based cleaning products, so we buy their dish soap, shampoo, conditioner, and all-purpose cleaner. We could actually make all of these things ourselves just with the soap nuts and fermented fruit, but convenience has won out for now. Thanks to Soap Nuts though, we have a fully chemical-free cleaning regiment.