Sunday, October 9, 2011

Goodbye Laundry Detergent!

My little (or not so little)
 laundry helper!
Like that title? Imagine not having to buy laundry sweet would that be? I've had fun saying goodbye to many traditional products in the past like Ziploc bags, plastic water bottles, plastic straws, paper towels, and Teflon.  But now it's time to say farewell to good ol' laundry detergent.  Now I'm not talking about not using anything to clean your clothes and letting them stay dirty, but I'm talking about an alternative. Imagine not having to break the bank with those mega-size detergents from Costco.  Not having to worry about what chemicals are in the detergent (like these). Or my personal favorite, not having to make your own detergent only to find out your clothes are no cleaner than when they started. Oh yes, I've tried all of those and I didn't like any of them, so this left me buying super expensive ones from brands like Seventh Generation or Ecover, which are great and all, but really pricey!

Now that little Avery is on board, it seems like our laundry load has increased quite a bit.  This meant I was buying those green laundry detergent bottles more often than I would've like to.  But it didn't really seem like I had a choice, until I found an amazing little ball online one day...a SmartKlean Laundry Ball.  This is quite a revolutionary ball.  All you do is throw it in your washer with each load best of all it gets your clothes clean without the use of chemicals, perfumes, or bleach, and it can be reused load after load for up to a year.  Goodbye laundry detergent!

My SmartKlean Laundry Ball.
"What did you say Mom? No detergent?
Tell me more!"
Want to learn more about it? Check out this video I found  on their website.  It took one viewing of this video, and then I was sold and literally pressing the "Buy" button.  Granted I'm quite the eco-nerd, so I don't hesitate to drop a few bucks on a cool new green gadget or product, so I suppose I'm a bit biased.  ( : But really give it a watch and see if it has you convinced to give it a try.

How about the video footage of those poor little ducks and fish? Have you convinced too? You're not alone. 

Didn't have time to watch the video? Here's some of the benefits of the Laundry Ball:
-can be used in cold water
-there's no need for an extra rinse cycle
-maintains the preservation of fibers and colors
-it's hypoallergenic with no chemical residues
-there's no chlorine or phosphates
-it eliminates mold, bacteria, and odors
-on top of that it can be reused for up to an entire year or 365 washes!

The SmartKlean Laundry Ball costs about $45 and for me, it already paid for itself after about 2 months or so of use. Score! Are you a number cruncher and need to see that the proof's in the pudding with this money savings? Check out this link.  It shows that the average consumer spends $200-600 on laundry detergent a year, imagine not having to spend this it! With the Laundry Ball you also cut down your laundry costs because you no longer need bleach, fabric softener, or dryer sheets. It just keeps getting better doesn't it!  ( :

"Well this makes laundry fun now!"
How could this possibly clean your clothes right? I know, I was skeptical too. But it was developed using bioelectircity and hydrodynamics to help the "water itself" remove the dirt and stains.  Basically inside the ball is a variety little ceramic balls (which shake like a little instrument) which work to clean the clothes in the laundry.  Still kind of confusing I know, but I've been using it for several months now and I have to say my clothes are just as clean if not more clean than with my traditional "green detergents" or other traditional detergents...minus the perfumey smell and residue.

Here's I make the laundry ball work with my laundry routine...

1. Drop it in the washer.

It's "laundry time" at my house.
Drop it in the top.

2. Run a load.

3. Take out the clothes, leave the Laundry Ball in.

4.  Repeat! Easy peasy.

Some small notes:

  • It says to separate your clothes by darks and lights
  • Load about 3/4 the way full (so the ball can circulate around more), this is hard for me, I love to cram that thing full, but I'm working on it.
  • Place the ball in the washer on top of your clothes
  • Use only cold water
  • Turn off the extra rinse at the end, you won't need it!
  • Then just leave it in under the sun or beside a window for about an hour once a month to "regenerate the ceramic beads inside. (Kind of funny I know but it will make it last longer!)
  • Have more questions? Click here.

Now it may feel weird at first when you use the ball because you will feel out of sync not putting anything in the machine, we've all done so for years, so it might be hard not to.  Resist the urge to supplement the ball with some's not needed.  Keep the faith.  It will work.  And over time you'll forget what it's like to even use detergent, or buy it, or get that gross liquid on your hands.

So that's how I have said "goodbye" to laundry detergent and still managed to keep my clothes fresh, clean, and green.  And for $45 you can too...give it a try!


  1. Super cool! Although I probably will wait a few years to get one-- $45 is a lot for me seeing how my giant SG knockoff from costco has lasted me over a year! Definitely not the average customer here :)

  2. Eatliveaustin,
    Hey there. I agree that it's a cool product and all, but no use getting it now if you've still got some green detergent left! I waited a little bit to finish my last bottle as well. That's great you've been able to make yours last so long!( :

  3. Does it work well with the diapers too?

  4. SarahPLiz,
    Good question. I was wondering the same thing too...although I don't wash my own cloth diapers it sure would be nice if it did work with diapers! After looking around on their website in the FAQ section, I found this...

    "Can the SmartKlean Laundry Ball be used on cloth diapers?
    Yes. Many of our customers say it works great on cloth diapers! In a review by the Soft Landing Baby blog, the author states that the SmartKlean Laundry Ball “works great, even on soiled cloth diapers! With the addition of fine sea salt and vinegar, load after load of dirty cloth diapers came out clean.”

    Note: There are some diaper brands that recommend against using extra additives in your wash (like baking soda or vinegar). These ingredients are unnecessary and may cause problems with your diapers. By washing cloth diapers with the SmartKlean Laundry Ball alone, there may be a light staining on the diapers; probably similar to what a coffee stain might look like after being washed. However, this mom states that she found slightly less staining with the laundry ball than she has with detergent. Hanging them to dry in the sun will usually take the staining out."

    Here's a link to where I found that answer:

    Personally, I've never tried it with cloth diapers, but it might be worth a'll have to let me know if you try it! ( :

  5. What an interesting alternative. I've seen this before on the web, but not with such a detailed description of how it works. Any idea what the ball is made of? When the year is up, can you recycle it/ refill it?

  6. Hi Betsy,
    I was also wondering what it was made's what I could find on their website:
    Also, here's what I found on there about what to do with it after a year or 365 washes is up: "Once the laundry ball is no longer usable, how can we dispose of it? Is it recyclable?
    Both the ceramics and magnets contained inside of the laundry ball are natural and biodegradable. The enclosure of the laundry ball is made up of recyclable thermoplastic elastomer which is a number 7 plastic - please find a recycling program that accepts this type of plastic for recycling in your area. In the event where there is no recycling program that accepts #7 items, we accept returns so that we may ensure their proper disposal."

    Hope this helps answer your questions. ( :

  7. Do your clothes smell fresh? I am so getting one of these!


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