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My zero waste laundry routine

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Are you using laundry detergent in a plastic bottle at the moment? So was I, before I found out there is a low waste way to do it as well. Switching up your routine to a zero waste laundry routine doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. Let me tell you more about how I made the switch to a low waste laundry routine.

Soap nuts

I replaced my conventional laundry detergent with soap nuts. Soap nuts grow on a tree called ‘Sapindus Mukorossi’. They aren’t anything new. In fact, using soap nuts is the very old school way of doing laundry and very easy to do. You put about 5 soap nuts in a small, reusable cotton bag, throw it in the laundry machine with your dirty laundry and that’s it! The berries release saponin, which cleans your clothes. I always wash my laundry on 20 or 30 degrees. Keep in mind that soap nuts work better in hotter water, because more saponin will be released. If your clothes are really dirty you might have to wash them on a higher temperature, which is the only downside to me. To make my laundry smell good, I add a few drops of lavender essential oil.

The great thing about soap nuts is that you can use each one about three times and afterwards they can be composted, so zero waste goes to landfill! Doing your laundry this way is also better for your skin, because you’re not using any chemicals. Read more about the pros and cons of soap nuts here.

Removing stains

Got a stubborn stain on your favorite article of clothing? This can also be solved the old-school way, with a bar of citrus soap. This stain removing soap contains lemon essential oil. You just wet the bar, rub it into the stain and then throw your clothes into the washing machine as usual.


Did you know that when you wash synthetic fabrics they release microplastics? These small particles of plastic end up in our waterways and oceans and eventually even in our food. To prevent these microplastics from getting into the water when I’m washing my clothes, I use a Guppyfriend laundry bag.

You simple put your laundry in the bag and wash your clothes as usual. Afterwards you can collect the microplastics from the bag and throw them in the trash.

I love my zero waste laundry routine. It doesn’t cost me any more time or money and it’s a great switch to make for the environment. Is your laundry routine low waste?

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