This week’s shopping tip is based on the 18X Extreme Soap Nuts Liquid and the Soap Nuts Laundry Pre-Treat Stick from NaturOli (which I found a pretty unconventional use for)!
This amazingly concentrated cleaner is all natural and effective!
A few of you may already know that I love to use Soap Nut “berries” to replace laundry detergent and softener and I also make a liquid from them that I use in my dishwasher, but perhaps you didn’t know that NaturOli makes its own super-concentrated liquid that can compete with those toxic “tough-guys” out there?
I tried the liquid for three applications: dishes, dishwasher, and laundry. The best thing about the 18X liquid is how little you need: I think I used 1/2 tsp (just over 2 ml) of liquid for each use (mixed with a little baking soda for the dishwasher dispenser, mixed with water for the washing machine dispenser) and it did the trick. Dirt and food came off the dishes, dirt, and laundry. It is a very effective cleaner. (I have one caveat below, so keep reading).
The laundry pre-treating stick did an OK job of removing tomato juice stains on a cotton shirt: it didn’t remove
This little stick is killer on carpet stains!
them completely, but when I hung the shirt up to dry in the laundry room, the sunlight did the rest! I think the stick works better than not pre-treating…also, if I remember back to my “Shout days”, I don’t think the unnaturally-blue gel would have worked any better. I have used this stick for a while now and it is better at removing some stains than others: the biggest factor is how soon you can get to the stain (before it sets in) and how long the saponin in the stick is allowed to act on the stain.
The biggest benefit of the pre-treating stick might surprise you, however…it works amazingly on CARPET. A little goes a really long way, too! I used it to remove stains that had accumulated under our couch (I had no idea: I only expected dust bunnies) from of all things, milk, RUST, and urine. Gross. I went over the bright yellow and orange stains with my spot steam-cleaner, which didn’t seem to remove anything but it did get the area wet. I rubbed the SoapNuts pre-treating stick on it (be careful or the coarse carpet will remove too much…wipe over stain lightly) and went back and forth over the stains several times with the steam cleaner (plain water). Completely clean with no residue. Amazing! No surprise we took our couches outside and hosed them down…
BEFORE. This is what the original rust stain looked like: the photo turned out pale, so I “saturated” it to bring out the colors. This is obviously not indigenous to the carpet…
AFTER: same area of carpet (please excuse the green tint in the middle: my camera phone does that sometimes…I’m not sure why…) Notice that the yicky rust stain is completely gone. Amazing!
Both items–the liquid and pre-treating stick–work wonderfully at getting rid of dirt. There is one caveat, however: neither item can dissolve grease or oil (see pictures below). This is actually a good thing, I think, because it means these cleaners won’t dry out your skin, remove wax from furniture or your car, or ruin the natural oils in leather or cloth diapers; this would also explain why softener and conditioner aren’t needed when using SoapNuts laundry or shampoo products, respectively. I don’t know of any other cleaner that can boast that without ADDING (harmful) chemicals to compensate for harsh drying effects.
BEFORE. I think this was coconut oil from our “Pina Colada” oatmeal…
AFTER: Two washes later (I even tried rubbing in some Dr. Bronner’s Castile soap after the first pre-treat attempt failed), the oil is still there, although much less visible. I think the Pre-treat stick helped, as did the castile soap, but nothing I have tried so far seems to be able to completely remove oil stains like these.
BEFORE: This is the dirty dish water after adding 1/2 tsp to a sink of hot water to hand wash a small load of dishes. The dirtiness is a good thing: that shows you how much came OFF the dishes (the 18X liquid is a very good cleaner). However, you may notice the oily film on the top of the water. This is not so good, because it coats the clean dishes as they come out of the water (the dishwasher does NOT have this problem). If you are going to hand wash dishes using 18X liquid, try to avoid adding anything oily or greasy until the very end; if possible, use a degreasing soap on oily dishes instead of relying on the Soap Nuts Liquid alone.
AFTER: this is what happened to the surface of the water within a second or two of adding some of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap. The Castile soap cuts through oil and grease almost instantly: however, Castile soap is more drying than Soap Nuts Liquid and it is not any better at removing dirt (in my experience). Now the surface is clear, you can really see how dirty the dish water is! The 18X liquid is an effective cleaner, but not a degreaser. I recommend using Soap Nuts Liquid in the dish water and keeping a foaming pump-bottle of diluted Dr. Bronner’s handy to dispense small amounts of degreasing soap for stubborn dishes, when needed.
With all this in mind, I highly recommend these products for cleaning: I still use my homemade Soap Nuts Liquid (I just have to use a lot more of it since it is weaker; if you don’t make your own, you should give the 18X a try!) and the Pre-Treat S. I’m still on the lookout for an all-natural solution for removing coconut oil and stock fat from clothing, but for all other stains (including the carpet) I trust the stick.
If you want to check out the 18X Soap Nuts Liquid Laundry Soap, it is $19.95 for 8oz (over 90 loads of HE laundry). The Soap Nuts Laundry Pre-Treat Stick is only $5.00 for 0.5 oz (tiny, but it packs a punch!). Both of these items would make for great gifts for health- and earth-conscious family members and friends. Make sure you treat yourself to them also!
Helping of Hope. Right Choice: choose non-toxic, effective cleaners like NaturOli Soap Nuts liquid and laundry pre-treat stick and supplement, when necessary, with all-natural degreasers; avoid harsh cleaners that strip natural protectors, damage materials through over-drying, and add toxic chemicals to compensate. Bright future: softer skin and hair, reduced toxic load, material possessions last longer and look cleaner!
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