Anyone who’s seen my apartment, or my fashion sense, may not put much stock in my endorsement of a cleaning product. But I’m going to tell you about it anyway.
I can’t recall exactly where I ran across Charlie’s Soap — I think it’s possible that I may have been looking for something related to my soapmaking and Charlie popped up as a Google ad. However it happened, I went to their web site and read about their three products — a household cleaner, a liquid laundry detergent and a powdered laundry detergent.
I realize you can get a variety of fine laundry detergents at your corner supermarket, but this one sounded different. Supposedly, it’s chemically different from the normal supermarket products, based on a combination of washing soda, sodium silicate and a coconut-oil-based detergent. Thanks to my soap-making, I know about coconut oil.
The manufacturers claim that the product’s cleaning ability is so strong that they warn you to run an empty cycle the first time around because Charlie’s product could actually dislodge some of the buildup left behind in the washing machine by your previous detergent.
It’s quite concentrated — one tablespoon of the powder is the recommended amount. A bag not much bigger than a softball does 80 loads of laundry. It’s completely unscented, hypo-allergenic and biodegradable.
“Softeners are not recommended or needed,” proclaims the package (a brown paper bag with a flexible wire closure). “There is nothing softer than really clean clothes.” They claim the product washes out of clothes more completely than traditional detergents.
They also boast about the lack of scent. “If you want flowers, go pick some,” growls the bag.
Well, I decided to give it a try. It sounds expensive but when you consider that one bag does 80 loads, it’s really not bad — and the prices on the web site include shipping within the U.S.
The first load seems to have come out fine, although I had nothing particular to test — no egregious recent stains or what have you. But the whites are white, the colors are still apprpropriate and everything feels soft and clean.Â We’ll see how this works over the long run.