Nuts About Soap Nuts

Miss Thrifty13 March 25, 2009


I bought a packet of soap nuts from the Summer Naturals site, and I’m loving them. Soap nuts grow on sapindus trees in China and India; they are sticky and gooey with a surfactant called saponin. Forget laundry detergent; put a handful of these nuts into an old sock, chuck them into the washing machine and let them do their stuff. They really work! They are eco-friendly too, being reusable, biodegradable and lacking the potential environmental impact of shop-bought laundry detergent.

These sticky little nuts also work out very cheap – which surprised me, because I presumed that they would be relatively expensive, in the way that worthy, hippy-friendly things often are.

I spent £1.99 on 100g of nuts: in practice, that’s enough to fill a large jam jar. Then I worked out what bang I was getting for my buck. You put in three nuts per wash; they last for four washes. My bag from Summer Naturals contained 33 nuts: enough for 44 loads of laundry. That works out at less than 5 pence (7 cents) per load! Not bad.

Compare it to the own-brand detergents from Asda that I’ve been buying up until now. I’ve been buying two versions: the value bottle for whites and the standard own-brand bottle for colours. At the time of writing, the first is priced at £1.46 for 26 washes; the second is priced at £3.60 for 28 washes. That works out at 6 pence per load and 13 pence per load respectively. So the soap nuts beat both! They take up less space in the cupboard, too.

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13 Responses to “Nuts About Soap Nuts

Great idea, I had never heard of them. Not sure I could give up on my darling Aerial though!

March 25, 2009 at 7:28 am

sharon rose says:

Hi there-they sound very good, thanks for the tip my dear and hope you are well too!

March 25, 2009 at 8:25 am

Holly says:

A Piece of Wood blogged about these a while ago and I got myself a sample and loved them! Would definitely have stocked up on more but was given some washing machine balls for Christmas that have lasted ages!

March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm

I’m not sure how you found this, but good work!
I worry about putting new things in my washing machine, as I might save £10 on a month’s laundry but end up with a £100 for repairing the machine…

March 26, 2009 at 11:58 am

Mark Woods says:

I have been using them for over a year now. A 1kg bag with an average of 2 washes a week has lasted a year, considering how much money you can spend on chemical washing powder I think these are good value.
Adding soda crystals gives them an extra boost also to add a smell just put a few drops of essential oil in the fabric conditioner draw. I hope this helps with peoples decisions. …

April 8, 2009 at 7:39 pm

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