From Pods and Powders to the Liquid Stuff, Here are the Best Laundry Detergents to Buy Right Now

laundry detergent
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Picking the right detergent for you requires the consideration of a number of factors. For example, do you have sensitive skin? What fragrance do you prefer for your linens, if any? Are your clothes delicate? And what kind of stains are most commonly found on your clothing? Each of these aspects has some impact on which detergent is best for you and your family.

We’ve put together a list of the best laundry detergents available. Each has its benefits, from stain-fighting abilities to delightful fragrances that last for days. Find the right one for you and make your weekly chores just a little bit easier. For example, if you prefer an all-natural option, look to Mrs. Meyers, Grab Green or The Laundress. If you live an active life (or just a messy one) and need powerful stain and odor-fighting, then consider options from Arm & Hammer and Rockin’ Green. Sensitive skin? Try All. Or maybe you never shed your goth phase and are dedicated to the blackest black clothing possible — Woolite All Darks will be your best friend.

No two wardrobes are the same, which is why it’s important to take the time to find the right detergent for you. These are the ones to get.

1. Arm & Hammer Fresh Scent Laundry Detergent

Using the power of baking soda, the Arm & Hammer Fresh Scent Laundry Detergent is capable of removing more than 101 different stains found throughout daily life. It’s designed to work in all kinds of washing machines, including standard and HE (High Efficiency) models, and leaves white clothes whiter and colors even brighter. The formula also includes OxiClean stain fighters to further remove unwanted dirt and odors. As an added bonus, this detergent uses a renewable energy source in production and is supplied in a recyclable bottle.

Pros: The included OxiClean stain fighters and baking soda makes this detergent effective against even the most stubborn stains.

Cons: The strong cleaners in the detergent may mean sensitive-skin sufferers are more susceptible to adverse reactions.

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2. The Laundress Signature Detergent

The Laundress is a great option for anyone looking for a natural detergent with a touch of luxury. Laundress’ classic scent is described as combining “jasmine with sweet musk, sandalwood, and a touch of citrus,” meaning it won’t be overwhelming cloying like some detergents. Plus, the formula is biodegradable and free of phthalates. It comes in a one-liter bottle, but don’t let the size fool you — it’s concentrated and can be used in up to 64 loads. 

Pros: Natural ingredients, the concentrated formula reduces packaging waste. Pleasant and unique aroma.

Cons: Expensive.

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3. Grab Green Natural 3-in-1 Laundry Detergent Powder

If caring for the environment drives your decision-making process when choosing a detergent, it’s worth checking out the Grab Green Natural 3-in-1 Laundry Detergent Powder. It’s made without any phosphates, phthalates, chlorine, animal by-products, toxins, dyes or masking agents and uses only naturally derived ingredients. The eco-responsible powder is packaged in a handy pack which includes a Velcro closure, making it easy to reuse the powder over and over again. You’ll also find an included scoop to measure out the powder to ensure you never waste any.

Pros: This USA-made, naturally derived formula is eco-responsible and free from phosphates, phthalates, chlorine and other harmful chemicals.

Cons: As it’s only available in fragrance-free and water lily flavors, there isn’t a wide range of choice if you like to give your clothes a specific scent.

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4. All Liquid Laundry Detergent

This laundry detergent is free from perfume or dyes, making it a great option for anyone with sensitive skin (or a sensitive nose). Plus, if you like to wear fragrances, this scent-free formula won’t get in the way. This bottle is an economical option as well, thanks to its concentrated formula. The 2x concentrated formula means that it can be used for 110 loads. The cap has a raised edge to easily indicate where to fill to.

Pros: Concentrated formula takes up less space and lasts longer. Free of dyes and perfumes, making it a good option for sensitive skin.

Cons: Could be packaged better in shipment.

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5. Molly’s Suds Original Laundry Powder

Molly’s Suds Original Laundry Powder is an ideal option for anyone who suffers from sensitive skin. By using only 100% natural ingredients, this detergent cleans clothes without the reaction you might experience from other store-bought products. The super concentrated powder comes with a measuring scoop for dosing your washing. It also comes in both scented and unscented options and has been developed with an eco- and people-friendly outlook. In addition to sensitive skin, the natural formula means this detergent can be used on most types of fabric without any fear of fading.

Pros: As it contains only five earth-derived ingredients, this detergent is a great choice for people with sensitive skin.

Cons: The natural composition of the soap powder may cause it to be less effective against tough dirt than some competing, chemical-filled options.

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6. Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Laundry Detergent

Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Laundry Detergent is a concentrated liquid which is gentle yet effective at cleaning clothes. The formula includes a number of dirt and stain-fighting enzymes along with essential oils and a host of naturally occurring ingredients. The detergent also flaunts a pleasant lavender scent which leaves clothes smelling irresistible after every wash.

Pros: The concentrated formula means a little goes a long way, giving you up to 64 loads of washing from a single bottle.

Cons: Lavender smell can be somewhat strong.

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7. Woolite All Darks Liquid Laundry Detergent

For delicates, knits and items that require special care, it’s impossible to beat Woolite. If you’re dedicated to the goth lifestyle, or you just want to keep your black jeans looking black, consider Woolite All Darks. It helps reduce fading and shrinking, and it can work with items in all kinds of fabrics. It’s also free of harsh ingredients that can degrade clothing and cause skin irritation.

Pros: Helps maintain color of dark clothing, works for all fabric types. Free from harsh ingredients.

Cons: Packaging could be better

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8. Tide PODS Liquid Laundry Detergent Pacs

If you’re after an easy-to-use and easy-to-store detergent that takes seconds to add to each load, choose the Tide PODS Liquid Laundry Detergent Pacs. These individually-contained pods come in packs of either 42, 81 or 96 and can be used in all washing machines and under all water conditions, including warm, cold, soft and hard. The formula within the pods is made using 100% renewable energy and is also free from phosphates. Plus, the three-in-one pods deliver the cleaning power of a stain remover along with a super-concentrated detergent and a color protector to boot.

Pros: The one-per-wash, fully contained liquid pods make it especially easy to do your laundry.

Cons: Not ideal if you like to vary the amount of detergent you use.

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9. Method Concentrated Laundry Detergent

Method makes a wide range of cleaning products, all of which have well-designed packaging and beautiful scents. Their detergent is no different — this 1.58-liter bottle has an ergonomic design and is available in a variety of pleasing, natural-smelling scents.  The unique scents include options “lavender and cypress” and “ginger mango,” but you can also choose fragrance and dye-free. It effectively lifts stains, brightens colors and whitens whites.  Plus, the formula is plant-based and biodegradable.

Pros: Concentrated formula means a small amount goes a long way. Pleasant fragrances. Plant-based formula.

Cons: Expensive considering size.

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10. Rockin’ Green Active Wear Laundry Detergent Powder

With this Rockin’ Green Platinum Series Active Wear Laundry Detergent Powder in your cupboard, regular gym goers and fitness enthusiasts will have no reason to worry about getting rid of lingering odors in their clothes. This all-natural, non-toxic detergent works on all types of exercise clothes and uses plant-based enzymes to clean them through soaking or in a machine wash. In addition, the detergent is 100% biodegradable and safe for both babies and sensitive skin.

Pros: This targeted product is ideal for cleaning high-tech gym clothing to keep unwanted body odor out and extend the life of these pricey items.

Cons: If you aren’t regularly sweating in your clothes, there’s little reason to use this detergent.

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