When I first heard about soap berries I thought, “what? did you say soap berries? Wait, are people really cleaning their laundry with berries?”. Just like you, million of questions came across my mind. So I got myself some soap berries from Ash N Brans.
Ash N Brans, just like its sounds, is owned by Ashley and Branden! A very nice young couple who are very passionate about natural soap and would like to make a difference in other peoples life.
So what are soap berries?
Soap berries are also known as soap nuts that usually grow on Sapindus Mukorossi tree. It is a super soap packed with fruits that look like nuts. If you want to get technical – they are actually a berry. Just like many other fruits like mangos, cherries, peaches… soap berries have an outer flesh part that surrounds a pit. They are called soap berries because the actual berry produces high concentrations properties usually found in soap, called saponin. Soap berries are great for cleaning due to the high abundance of saponin (a chemical property which is found in various plant species which acts as the cleaning agent).
What do they do ?
They are great for cleaning both clothes and skin. They are the ideal cleaner for those with sensitive skin, eczema, allergies and psoriasis because they are all natural and gentle on clothes and skin as well.
Laundry: unlike other commercial detergents, soap berries do not contain any chemical and clean gently and effectively. To wash with soap berries, you simply place 3 – 5 berries (depending on load size) into a laundry bag and drop it into the washer. Or you can pre soak the berries in a jar of warm water and then place it in a laundry bag.
The most important part is to make sure you wash the load with warm water. Soap berries washes most effectively between 30-60 degrees Celsius. They can last for few loads as well saving you time and money. When the berries start to look dark and feel soggy, thats when you know you can compose them! If you do want a fragrant scent, you can add a few drops of essential oils.
From personal experience, soap berries will make your laundry fluffier and softer. It also leaves them fresh with a distinct clean smell that isn’t artificial!
Household cleaning (all purpose: toilet, floor, sink, glass, fruit and vegetable, dishes etc): other commercial household cleaners on the market contain harsh chemicals that are not only harsh on your skin but also harmful to your health – not to mention unsafe for small children and pets.
To make your all purple household cleaner, simple use warm water mix it with the berries (2-3). If you have vinegar around the house – adding it will only help!
Hand “Soap”/ shampoo/body wash: Soak about 2 nuts in a container with hot water. If you want to add a little fragrance, add few drops of essential oil! Or you can boil the soap berries for about 30 minutes, remove the soap berries and pour the liquid into a jar. You can also wash your pet with the liquid spray! How cool is that?
Mosquito repellent: Spray it onto your skin! safe and gentle to use for babies, children and pets (spray onto the fur). I don’t know about you, but I cant wait to try this method next summer!
Jewelry cleaner: Soak your jewelry in soap berry liquid for a few min. Use a soft toothbrush to gently remove the debris. Rinse with clean water and polish with dry cloth.
Do soap berries have a fragrance?
Nope, but they do have a mild vinegar like scent to them that does NOT transfer to the water or clothes.
Is soap berries safe for babies or people with sensitive skin?
Yes! Soap berries are 100% natural and hypoallergenic. They do not contain any added chemicals or fragrance that can lead to skin irritation in babies or people with skin sensitivities. It is great for washing cloth diapers, as it does not leave residue like commercial detergents do.
What are the benefits of using soap berries for washing your hair?
No chemical, no preservative, no fragrance. Soap berries are anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, so they are great for people with dandruff or any kind of scalp issues. Prevent hair loss and promote new hair growth. And most importantly, it will make your hair shinier and softer if you use it regularly.
Check out these DIY:
All purple cleaner – http://www.diynatural.com/soap-nuts-homemade-all-purpose-cleaner/
cloth diaper – wikihow.com/Wash-Cloth-Diapers-With-Soap-Nuts
Hand Soup- www.ashnbrans.com/how-to-diy/
Liquid laundry detergent – theecofriendlyfamily.com/2013/05/homemade-liquid-soap-nuts-laundry-detergent/
Soap Berries concentrate- ashnbrans.com/ash-n-brans-blog/2015/11/15/how-to-make-your-own-soap-nut-concentrate
Dish washer- becomingpeculiar.com/soap-nuts-in-the-dishwasher/
Feel free to share us what you use it for and your recipes!