Soap Nuts Liquid Around the House (and on your head)

In case you have no idea what on earth a Soap Nut is….read this first. I have been doing laundry with soap nuts for years, and I love them. You can also make liquid soap with these versatile little buggers and use it all around the house. Soap nuts liquid is also the best shampoo I have ever used!

Soap Nut Liquid

6 cups water

12-15 soap nuts (or pieces)

Bring water to a boil. Add soap nuts and turn down to low. Simmer for 30-45 minutes. You will end up with about 4 cups of concentrated soap. You have extracted every bit of soap when the soap nut shells turn very light tan or gray. (If you are super frugal you can take the used up soap nuts and puree them. The paste is an excellent, high-powered cleanser)

Because Soap Nut Liquid is a botanical tree fruit and free of all preservatives, PABA, sulfates, lanolin, parabens,  phthlates, phosphates, formaldehyde, petro-chemicals, fragrance, dyes, alcohols, chlorine, and talc, it can be stored at room temperature for 4-5 days. Soap Nut Liquid will keep in the fridge for 2-3 weeks. I keep mine in a small jar in the door of the fridge, and I pour the rest into an ice-cube tray and pop it in the freezer. One cube is perfect for one load of laundry, one load of dishes, or one mop of the whole floor. I also fill my small plastic shampoo bottle (an old ketchup dispenser with a tiny nozzle that I got at Walmart for .98 cents works perfect!) and keep it in the shower.

I buy my soap nuts from Naturoli, and I highly recommend them. Check out these suggestions from www.naturoli.com:

For Jewelry: Soak jewelry in soap nuts liquid for a few minutes. Use an old soft toothbrush to remove debris. Rinse with clean water and polish with a soft cloth. Soap nuts have been used as a fantastic jewelry cleaner for eons. There’s no need for harsh, toxic chemicals!

For Pets: Superb for pets! Your little loved ones will never feel and smell this fresh again! They’ll appreciate it, too! (note from Heather: this soap does not strip the natural oil from your pets fur/skin, thus reducing dander)

For Shampoo: Use soap nuts liquid to shampoo hair. Leave in for about 5 minutes.  Rinse as usual with warm water. If you prefer more suds, add a little of your favorite shampoo. We know it’s hard not to want more suds, but trust us it really is cleaning your hair. You will be amazed at the results. AND you don’t need hair conditioner, because soap nuts are a natural conditioner and anti-static.

For Dishwashers: Fill the dishwasher soap dispenser with soap nuts liquid. Wash as usual. Tip: For extra sparkle, add a half-ounce of vinegar to the rinse dispenser or during the rinse cycle.

For Hand Wash: Add about 2 tbsp of soap nuts liquid to wash water and stir, or make a tea with your soap nuts muslin bag. Simply hand wash as usual.

For Steam Cleaning Carpets: Soap nuts work exceptionally well in carpet cleaners because they are so low sudsing and odor reducing. Add about a quarter cup of soap nut liquid to hot water in the portable cleaner. Great for urine stains!

For Household Cleaning: Pour soap nuts liquid into a spray bottle. Use full strength or dilute as desired. Use for sinks, counters, floors, etc.

For Windows and Glass: Fill a spray bottle with about 8 oz of water. Add a half-ounce of soap nuts liquid and a half-ounce of vinegar. Spray and then wipe clean with dry cloth.

So what do you think? Worth a try? I had a really hard time at first, because of the lack of suds. I found it really difficult when I was hand washing dishes! We are so used to suds, that it just doesn’t feel clean enough when there aren’t bubbles!

My shampoo bottles. Because soap nuts shampoo is runny, these dispense just the right amount of soap. I keep one in the fridge and one in the shower.

 I was really sold when I started washing my hair with this liquid. My hair has never been softer. The cool part is you can wash your hair, body, face and the shower, all with the same soap. Talk about frugal. I also think this would be a great alternative to the no-poo method, because it does not strip the natural oils from your hair, and leaves it very soft and moist. Zero hair conditioner is needed! I will never have to buy shampoo again.

I pay $46.00 for a 5 lb bag of soap nuts from Naturoli. (keep in mind that ONE pound does 160 loads of laundry. That’s 0.5 cents per load of clothes) so this soap nuts shampoo costs me just under .02 cents per head wash. Not too shabby….considering I don’t have to buy conditioner anymore either.

P.S If you don’t want to hassle with boiling the soap nuts, and the fact that the liquid spoils quickly, you can grind the dry soap nuts into a powder in a coffee grinder and put the powder directly on your head, or directly into the washing machine, or use as a scouring powder etc.

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26 Comments

  1. April 23, 2012 at 7:20 AM

    I’ll have to make sure Richard sees this post, since he’s our house’s “soap nut!” Thank you for the great ideas!

  2. Jennifer said,

    April 23, 2012 at 8:03 AM

    Hello! Can I add a link to your site in the sites we love and share both of your soap nut blogs in our blog. http://www.perfectlynaturalfamilysoaps.com

    Thank you!! Jennifer

    I love your site

  3. Tamara said,

    April 23, 2012 at 10:49 AM

    i’ve been using soap nuts in my laundry for years now and would never go back. I also add vinegar to the rinse cycle; soft clothes and no static. I’m still happy with washing my hair with baking soda, but just this morning was thinking about soap nuts and my dishes…

    now I will do it! I will make some liquid for the kitchen sink!

    • April 23, 2012 at 2:20 PM

      Tamara, let me know what you think of the dish soap. It does get your dishes clean, but the lack of suds really takes some getting used to 🙂 I also throw 2-3 of them in the dishwasher when I’m in a rush and they work like a charm.

  4. dainushka said,

    April 23, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Amazing idea to make those tiny little soap cubes! Will definately try :)! Thanks!

    • April 23, 2012 at 2:13 PM

      It’s the only idea I could come up with to keep the soap from spoiling. I don’t want to have to make soap every 3 or 4 days, I prefer to make it once a month and just do a large batch. It works like a charm. I have also heard of people freezing it in plastic dishsoap bottles, that seems like a good idea too.

  5. April 23, 2012 at 12:35 PM

    This is so cool! Thankyou, Id heard these mentioned before, but assumed they were an actual manufactured soap of some sort. I’ll have to look to see if they can be bought somewhere in Canada too.

    • April 23, 2012 at 2:05 PM

      Naturoli just announced via email this morning that they have free shipping on all orders over $55. I bet they ship to Canada.

    • Tamara said,

      April 23, 2012 at 2:38 PM

      You can get them here (in Canada). I buy mine at our quasi local natural food/products store (in Ottawa).

      • April 23, 2012 at 2:40 PM

        I’ll have to try my local store – they might have them, I just never knew to ask before.

  6. April 23, 2012 at 5:36 PM

    Fun post! I tried them a while ago and used them for a bit until I ran out. I couldn’t get over the no suds. LOL funny creatures we are huh? It looks like you found a great shampoo though! Love that idea. I wish we could grow our own soap nuts, then I could see myself getting into it again!

  7. May 22, 2012 at 1:31 AM

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  8. October 29, 2012 at 3:15 PM

    […] many uses of soap nuts. Check out these sites today: TheDIYBasics, Guide to Living Naturally, and A Real Food Lover sites. […]

  9. October 29, 2012 at 5:33 PM

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  10. December 12, 2012 at 8:18 AM

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  11. Jessica said,

    February 23, 2013 at 7:16 PM

    I know this post is pretty old, but just fyi, mountainroseherbs.com sells soapnuts for just $6/lb. Even more frugal!

    • April 1, 2013 at 3:21 PM

      I love mountain rose herbs, but have found the quality of the soap nuts isn’t quite as good, and I end up using more of them. Which makes them more expensive in the long run I’m afraid. I do LOVE the company and buy ALL of my herbs and spices from them. Click HERE for a discount!

  12. Tiffany said,

    March 13, 2013 at 3:06 PM

    Just curious, when you say one cube will be enough for things do you have to add water to the cube or is just the cube itself once its melted fine?

    • April 1, 2013 at 2:46 PM

      Tiffany, good question. When i’m doing laundry i just throw the soap icecube in the washing machine and close the lid, done. When i’m mopping the floor i throw the cube in the bucket full of hot water, done. I’m not a big fan of measuring….ha!

  13. May 26, 2013 at 1:03 AM

    […] I discovered soap nuts. See all about soap nuts HERE and other ways to use them besides laundry HERE. I was at my girlfriends house the other day and she was complaining about the high cost of laundry […]

  14. Linda said,

    August 14, 2013 at 6:10 PM

    Hi just wondering do you know, does soapnut shampoo strip hair dye ?

    • August 22, 2013 at 9:07 AM

      Linda, Soap nuts are so, so gentle. I know that they are great for laundry that is very delicate, and doesn’t fade the dye, but i don’t know about hair.

      • August 22, 2013 at 6:21 PM

        Soap nuts shampoo will not fade hair dye. After washing your hair with soap nuts, your hair will feel stiff while it is still wet, but it will feel very, very soft when it’s dry. Your hair color will not be effected.

  15. marycheshier said,

    September 30, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Reblogged this on How 2 Be Green and commented:
    Great post. Thanks!

  16. July 2, 2014 at 7:09 AM

    I found these cubes very attractive and fresh. We also brought number of products in the market manufactured with soap nuts but what i liked most is these cubes. Its really a great idea.


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