soapnuts for planet friendly clothes and dish washing, certified organic

4.89 out of 5 based on 9 customer ratings
(10 customer reviews)


Soapnuts are a revolutionary laundry soap which grows on trees and replaces all chemical detergents with an eco friendly solution! Very economical to use. Skin and planet friendly.



What are soapnuts?

Soapnuts are a revolutionary laundry soap which grows on trees and replaces all chemical detergents with an eco friendly and green solution! Soapnuts can be used to wash clothes, dishes, windows, vehicles, shower screens and still there are many other uses. While, nothing more than a dried fruit case, they leave the clothes clean, soft and fragrant free. Soapnuts save us from polluting the water with synthetic chemicals, from irritating our skin. The best thing is that thy are so economical to use. A machine load of laundry costs us about 3-4 pence!

Soapnuts are well known across the East and for thousands of years, people across India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal and China have collected the soap nuts, also called soap pods for washing clothes as well as for a multitude of other uses.

The soapnut fruit comes from the sapindus mukorossi tree which grows naturally in the forest and hill track areas. Once the tree reaches 9 years, it begins to produce fruit, and then continues to fruit for another 90 years. Only the natural ripened windfall fruits are collected using traditional gathering techniques and then the seed and fruit pulp is removed by women. It is the fruit case which contains natural saponins or plant soap. The fruit case are then sun dried. Many different species of plant contain saponins but the sapindus mukorossi, has the highest concentration of all the different species of soapnut trees and it is higher in saponins that other saponiferous herbs such as soapwort.

How do soapnuts work?

Hot water dissolves the plant saponins which are in very high concentrations in the sapindus mukorossi soapnut. Saponins are a natural surfactant which reduce surface tension of water, making water ‘wetter’ and allowing it to penetrate the clothing fibers lifting dirt, grime and oil from the clothes. The surfactants then hold onto the dirt, keeping it in suspension in the water until it is drained away. During the rinse cycle, normally with cold water, no more soap is released, meaning that when the clothes are dry, they are completely fragrance free and soft.

How to wash clothes with soapnuts in a washing machine

For hard water you will need 4-5 soapnuts for a full washing load, and for soft water, only 3-4 are necessary.

Place the soapnuts in an old sock, a thick one is best. Tie a knot in the sock to prevent the soapnuts from escaping and place the sock in the washing machine drum with the clothes. There is no need to add detergent or fabric conditioner. Go ahead and do the wash. The sock of soapnuts can be reused 3-5 times, and then the spent soapnut shells can be composted. If you wish to add a scent to your washing, just add 8 drops of essential oil into the conditioner tray of the washing machine.

How to make soapnut washing solution for hand washing clothes, for washing up, as a surface cleaner and for cars.

Just stand the soapnuts in cold water. The saponins are water soluble and will leach out. We never use the hot method. We use about 1/3 of a packet and top up with about 1 liter of water. We wait for a while for the water to change colour and to take on a more amber tone and use the natural soapy extract for washing shiny and glazed surfaces.  Once you have used this liquid, add more water and again. We use tepid and then increasingly warmer water for further infusion, finally squeezing the soapnuts out by hand to extract the last of the saponins. Finally the spent soapnuts are composted. the great thing about cleaning with soapnut liquid is that you don’t need rubber gloves.

How many times can soapnuts be reused in the washing machine?

Soapnuts can be used several times over before they are spent, but it depends on the temperature of the wash. With low wash temperatures, 30-40ºC, the soapnuts can be reused 3-5 times, and at temperatures of 60-90º soapnuts will perform well for 2 washes.

It is easy to tell whether the soapnuts can be reused. Fresh soapnuts are a golden brown and if you squeeze them when they are wet they will release bubbles. Once the saponins have been used up the soapnut shells will turn very dark, thin, and they will begin to disintegrate. Then it is time to compost them and to place new soapnuts in your sock.

Soapnuts do not contain ‘optical brighteners’, nor bleach, therefore white clothing may need a boost from time to time. Just add some bicarbonate of soda or soda crystals into your washing powder tray. Also just as with conventional washing, stains will need treating before the machine wash.

Are soapnuts really good value?

250g of soapnuts for £5.00 contains about 90 soapnuts and by using 4 soapnuts, 4 times at a wash temperature of 40ºC, they will give at least 90 washes. An order of 500g of soapnuts for £8.00 gives better value and 1kg for £13.00 even better value still.

Soapnuts are especially kind to delicate clothing such as silk, clothes coloured with natural dyes and natural textiles. Because soapnuts are natural and gentle, they help clothes which would normally fade quickly to retain their colours. Soapnuts have anti-fungal, antibacterial and insect repellent properties making them ideal for prolonging the life of delicate textiles. For delicate clothing which needs to be hand washed, make up a soapnut washing solution.

How to wash your dishes with soapnut solution

I use the soapnut liquid for washing my dishes and I like it a lot because it doesn’t strip the oil out of my hands or provoke dermatitis. I don’t have to wear gloves when I use soapnut washing up liquid. To make the task easier, I rinse the dishes as soon as they are used – even cold water and a bit of a rub with a cloth or my hand will remove most of the food traces. When you are ready to wash up, just run a bowl of hot water, add your soapnut liquid and the job is easy. Glasses look more respectable if they are dipped in a vinegar and hot water rinse.

How to wash your dishes with soapnuts in a dishwasher

Place 3-5 soapnuts in the cutlery tray. Get the machine to do the wash. Compost the soapnuts.

Other uses of soapnuts

The soapnut solution is traditionally used to:

Soapnuts are great for cleaning the shower screen, windows and mirrors.
Wash and soften clothes, especially wool and silk.
Wash the hair and body, leaving the skin clean and soft.
Clean jewelery including precious metals and stones – Add some lemon juice and scrub gently with a toothbrush
Repel insects and mosquitoes when used as a hair and body wash.
Kills aphids – sieve the soapnut liquid carefully, so that it does not block up a spray nozzle.
Wash animals – not only does a soapnut shampoo leave animals clean and with a soft coat but the solution is highly effective against lice, fleas and ticks and helps to repel insects.
In Ayurvedic medicine as a shampoo and body wash for people suffering from eczema, psoriasis and for removing freckles.
People also wash their fruit and vegetables in soap nut solution to help clean the food and remove pesticides and chemicals. Once the vegetables have been washed in a soapnut solution, rinse them with fresh water.
We use the soapnut liquid as summer time windscreen wiper wash fluid and for washing vehicles without polluting the ground water.


Please keep the soapnuts away from pets and children.

The ethics of using soapnuts

  • The soapnuts are grown and prepared totally without chemicals and manufacturing processes. They are simply gathered, separated from the fruit pulp and seed and then sun dried. No other washing product is made 100% by nature.
  • These soapnuts are sourced from Pakistan, a country which desperately needs our support to help recover their economy and restore their normality to their lives after the devastating floods.
  • Supports traditional gathering and subsistence among rural families from Pakistan.
  • Soapnuts are transported by ship. While 90% of world commodities are transported by shipping, shipping only accounts for 10% of the global pollution. Transport by water is the most environmentally friendly form of transport. As ship technology improves and more shipping routes are opened up, shipping will become even more environmentally friendly.
  • Soapnuts are safe for septic tanks and gray water systems. Even when the water enters the sewage system, soapnuts naturally biodegrade as they contain no synthetic chemicals, fragrances, foaming agents or other polluting toxins. The water from the washing machine can also be collected and used to water the garden – helping to deter pests.
  • Soapnuts trees need no cultivation and are naturally sustainable. The trees help to lock up carbon dioxide through their 100-150 year long life.
  • Friendly to people and animals with sensitive skin and people who suffer with trouble prone skin. People with skin trouble should never use chemical products on their skin.
  • Friendly to babies and children who should never be exposed to the toxic chemicals in conventional chemical washing products. Soapnuts are suitable for washing nappies. All washable nappies should be washed with soapnuts to maximize their absorption and prevent leaks. Conventional detergents are not suitable for washing nappies as they prevent the fabric from absorbing fluids fully.
  • Using soapnuts helps us and our friends to break away from the manipulative advertising of chemical soap powder and fabric conditioner manufacturers, who unnecessarily pollute the environment, our homes and bodies.
  • Soapnuts are much more economical than other washing products.
  • Soapnuts help to rid our households of toxic chemicals.
  • Please compost the remains.

The soapnuts are contained within a plastic bag to keep them fresh. The soapnuts do not come with a smaller cotton drawstring bag to put them in – I recommend using an old sock as it is easier to undo, and once the sock is knotted, the soapnuts can not escape in the washing machine.

Simply select 250g for £5.00, 500g for £8.00 or £1kg for £13.00.

Soapnut wholesale

We import soapnuts and wholesale them. If you need at least 10kg of soapnuts, at please call us on 01379 588100 0r 0800 023 5008. Just imagine the great difference to the environment if everyone used soapnuts!

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Additional information

Weight N/A

250g, 500g, 1kg, 5kg

10 reviews for soapnuts for planet friendly clothes and dish washing, certified organic

  1. 4 out of 5

    Fabulous product. Washes really well at low temperatures. Stains like blood or grass sometimes need a little pre-treatment but otherwise the soapnuts are surprisingly effective. They also work out much cheaper than a powder. I would never go back!

  2. 5 out of 5

    (verified owner)

    Soap nuts are my life, now I have read what you can do with them on this website its all true. I have rid my home of all chemicals.

  3. 5 out of 5

    (verified owner)

    Earlier this year, Sally had asked how my father washed his hair with soapnuts in India and out of curiosity I decided to try the cold infusion method for myself. I was not disappointed! I was left with really clean, soft hair and didn’t need any conditioner!

  4. 5 out of 5

    I’ve been using soap nuts now for well over a year for laundry – AND I LOVE THEM! The clothes smell fresh – no chemical/ammonia smells – just lovely. The clothes are also softer and feel great against the skin. I’ve got sensitive skin and I can confirm that I suffered from no irritation after washing my clothes with soap nuts.

    The soap nuts get rid of most grime and all smells. For stubborn stains I dab the area with hemp soap and lo and behold the stain is gone. The only tough stain that put up any resistance was tea – but after 2 treatments with hemp soap and 2 washes with soap nuts, the stain was gone.

    The other bonus is you can wash laundry using soap nuts at any temperature. The soaps nuts are good for 2/3 washes at 90 degrees, and up to 6 washes at 40 degrees (we live in a soft water area).

    Thank you for revolutionising the way I wash my clothes!


  5. […] always use soapnuts to wash textiles, as they rinse out really well and leave no taint. Soapnuts can be used in a washing machine, or you can stand the soapnuts in cold water to make a liquid soap […]

  6. 5 out of 5

    Soapnuts are incredible. I use them to wash all my clothes and they leave the most amazing clean ‘nothing’ smell if that makes sense! They are brilliant for washing delicates such as wool or silk as they will not damage the fabric. I also use them for washing dishes as they do not irritate the skin on my hands. They are great to use for many household cleaning tasks. I just put a few in a jug with some hot water and use as and when. I love that they are completely natural and biodegradable. I will just throw them in the garden when used. Everyone should try these as they are a little miracle from nature.

  7. 5 out of 5

    I’ve been using soap nuts for clothes washing for a year now. They’re wonderful, very economical and after use go in the compost bin. There’s no need to use fabric softener, the clothes seem fresher and softer. Just some pre-treatment for stubborn stains. Must try out hemp soap pre-soak that Mag’s talk about above.

  8. 5 out of 5

    (verified owner)

    I just want to say thank you for the last 2 orders you have sent me. I just love the soap nuts. I have been looking for something natural for the laundry for a long time as all the washing powders and conditioners make my skin itch. I have used just soapnuts for over a month now (no conditioner as its not needed) and have had no itchy skin. The washing comes out lovely and the ironing is easier. It also works out a lot cheaper as they last such a long time. I use them for 5 washes.

  9. 5 out of 5

    (verified owner)

    I’ve been using these soap nuts for about a year now and I love them. I have two young children and find they clean their grubby clothes no problem. For really stubborn stains I just use an Eco stain remover on the area pre wash. I sometime like to use different essential oils in the softener compartment, in particular Lavender for bedding and Grapefruit for clothes. One gets so used to clothes just smelling of fresh air, it’s how it should be. When I now smell clothes washed in leading brands of fabric detergents I find it so overpowering and unpleasant. My children used to often get patches of dry skin but not since I’ve been using soap nuts. Great on your skin and even better on the wallet. Will never use anything other than soap nuts and rave about them to my friends. Soap nuts are my best friend x

  10. 5 out of 5

    (verified owner)

    Just about to buy my second bag of soapnuts, a bigger bag this time.
    Love this for hand wash and washing clothes.

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