A Disappointed Update on Charlie’s Soap and Butylcelosolv (or Butoxyethanol)

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I do not like when the wool is pulled over my eyes.

I really don’t like being lied to or feeling like someone kind of sort of told a lie, but tried to make it look honorable.

And when I share that untruth or half-truth with the world before finding out that I’m wrong, too? Then I start smoking from the top of my head.

charlie's soap and butylcelosolv butoxyethanolI was feeling that way last week when an astute reader did what I should have when I reviewed Charlie’s Soap last year. I was even questioned at the time because instead of doing thorough research into butylcelosolv, the active ingredient the company told me was in their all-purpose cleaner, I accepted their explanation of its safety. I still didn’t look into it further. Big mistake.

Luckily, a reader named Michelle popped in with a new comment and some much better Google searches. She shared the following:

I found this when I googled “charlies soap ingredients”
http://www.charliesoap.com/pdf/Charlie%27s%20Soap%20All%20Purpose%20MSDS.pdf [The document is the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) that the federal government requires for all chemicals. It lists one of two active ingredients as “2-BUTOXYETHANOL”.]

I have yet to find any blog or lettter from the president stating anything about that ingredient.

I love their soap, but after reading this I no longer trust Charlie Soap.

Now I Finally Research

A year too late, here are my findings on this new name, since the one given me by the company was very difficult to Google search for:

Their active ingredient that they called butylcelosolv is Czech for 2-Butoxyethanol acetate, also known as Butyl Cellosolve. According to the Skin Deep Database, which rates it a 6 (moderate hazard), butoxyethanol has ties to cancer, reproductive toxicity, neurotoxicity, and more. (source) It’s used in hundreds of cleaning products, even as an oil spill dispersant, and “provides cleaning power and the characteristic odor of Windex and other glass cleaners. It is the main ingredient of many home, commercial and industrial cleaning solutions.” (source) It may not be a major environmental contaminant, but it certainly doesn’t sound safe!

Here’s a must-read from the Janitorial Products Pollution Prevention Project:

2-Butoxy Ethanol is one of the most toxic of the glycol ethers.

You should use products containing butoxyethanol with extreme care. It is a poison that can easily absorb through your skin to harm you. When working with it, always wear gloves and goggles and be sure the you have enough ventilation.

Check out that site for more scary stuff. The Australian Government also seems skeptical about butoxyethanol, recommending quite a number of labeling requirements for it.

The New Jersey Department of Health prepared this helpful hazardous substance fact sheet, including:

2-Butoxy Ethanol may be a CARCINOGEN in humans.
There may be no safe level of exposure to a carcinogen, so
all contact should be reduced to the lowest possible level.

What do You Think? Can We Trust Charlie’s Soap?

I’m glad I didn’t use this stuff often or for long. It should be labeled as toxic AND disclose the active ingredient on the packaging, as well as make it very, very clear that the spray bottle is a concentrate!

I’m very upset that I feel like the company was not straightforward in their claims, and the company tagline “safe, non-toxic, biodegradable soap” seems like an awful stretch after reading all this.

I am not yet sure what is in their laundry soap, which so many people trust and love for cloth diapers in particular. When I mentioned the updates to the old post last week on Facebook and Twitter, people were quick to ask about the laundry soap. UPDATE: Readers in the comments inquired, “What do we use for laundry then?” My personal recommendation, which I tested at the same time as Charlie’s and liked it better then, too, is soap nuts. They are truly natural, hands down. Here’s my soap nuts review and where I purchase mine.

My thinking? If a company fibs their way through one product and uses Czech so it’s harder to research the active ingredient, I simply can’t trust anything they make. What do you think?

A Response from the Company

Without any contact from me to him, I received an email from the president of the company a week or so after I publicized the update to the original post:

“I’m really sorry you had the issue with the biodegradable solvent. You might like our new Kitchen & Bath cleaner, though. That’s coming out tomorrow. We cut the amount of solvent in half and made it ready for spray-on/wipe-off application for daily use. With less of the solvent, it’s even that much safer and biodegradable, and better still, it doesn’t smell as much like a cleaner.”

Did he miss the point entirely? I’m pretty sure I’m pointedly upset about the ingredient itself, period, being used, not the quantity in which it’s measured out.

SafER is not what I’m looking for. Give me SAFE.

I think I’m sticking with my vinegar.

What do you think? Should I respond to the president of the company? Has anyone discovered anything about the laundry soap?

Disclosure: I am an affiliate with NaturOli soap nuts, for good reason. I like to work with companies that make good products. I’m so glad Charlie’s Soap never ended up advertising with me; I’d feel even worse about all this! See my full disclosure statement here.

Click here for my disclaimer and advertising disclosure - affiliate links in this post will earn commission based on sales, but it doesn't change your price.

104 Bites of Conversation So Far

  1. says

    That’s just horrible! I can’t believe they would be allowed to list the ingredient in another language. What the heck? And, you’re right – that response was clearly just to avoid commenting on what you found.

    I would be steaming too! :(

  2. says

    Ughhh… very disappointed. I JUST ordered two containers of CS… I just started using cloth diapers and was ready to start tomorrow after I received my shipment. My heart sank after reading your post. I will follow this and see what others say. For me, I’d say its out.

    • cathy says

      You may want to refuse the delivery and call the company to explain your actions… Also something to look into is… if purchased with a Mastercard or Visa, these two cards have insurance for your purchases that many people are not aware of. Depending on the card you may have insurance that provides price matching, coverage for loss, or costs to return product due to false claims/ advertising by the company. It may be worth the hassle of calling your credit card’s service department and sitting through a couple of transfers until you get to someone who can review the insurance policies with you and let you know if you are entitled to a refund or stop payment. Good luck!

  3. Krista says

    whoa….I had my suspicion about their all-purpose cleaner, but never got around to investigating it. Everytime I used their cleaner, I would hack and cough…the ‘cleaner’ smell stung my nose everytime. But did I do anything about it? No, I actually trusted what they were saying about their products being safe and natural! Ugh. Thankfully, I haven’t used it too much during this pregnancy (I’ve used just in the kitchen, because it cleans off the food-caked counters so well!), but now I’m really second guessing whether I should hold on to the TWO gallons I have still. I’m interested to hear about their laundry soap, because I really like their soap and was really looking forward to using is for our cloth diapers when baby comes. This makes me mad!! Thanks for posting this!

    • KristinaD says

      I had the same problem with their cleaner!! I stopped using it. I also found out I am allergic to corn so I thought it was corn-y. When I stopped using their cleaner, I stopped using their soap and switched to soap nuts.

      When I did cloth diapers I used it and had NO problems with my very sensitive children. That was a few years ago, so take it with a grain of salt. :)

    • Esra says

      I add some soap nut consentrate that i make to my vinegar. Works awesome. I make the consentrate and freeze them in ice cubes like i boiled 5 soapnuts and made 13-14 ice cubes of solution. I use half bottle of water so i can get throug quick before soap nut liquid goes bad, 1 cube frozen soap nut liquid and couple table spoons of vinegar. It works for granit , stainless steel, oven for almost everything . Strongly suggest :) I smile when i see bublles in the bottle each time.

          • Katie says

            I have the shampoo bar that I bought before the liquid version came out. I don’t use it often because I do the “no ‘poo” thing most of the time, but it did work. I wasn’t a huge fan of the sort of anise scent they had going on. From what I hear, the liquid is awesome. I have pined for some of the personal care items, but just haven’t been in need yet. Hope that helps! I’d watch for some of their sales or free trial size dealies for a good chance to test something out – I try to mention those on the blog when they pop into my email. 😉 Katie

  4. Natalie says

    I, generally, only use vinegar or homemade all-purpose cleaning products. I would, therefore, be very interested in finding out more about the laundry detergent. I currently live in Germany where I have very hard water – so, I use Rockin’ Green – Hard Rock detergent with great success. But, I have many friends who use Charlie’s Soap as their detergent and this review concerns me.

  5. says

    The fact that they are watching and listening is a good thing. When the consumer voice has enough impact to make a change, it’s a good thing, even if it is not all the way, it is in the direction we want. Look at how many food manufacturers have finally gotten the hint and removed high fructose corn syrup from their products. Despite the corn industry’s heavy advertising and underhanded relabeling ideas. So in your case, the President Of the Company! stood up and took notice. I would say a letter to the effect of, wow, thanks for paying attention to your consumers. You haven’t gone far enough away from the ingredient for my liking but I appreciate the attempt. If you ever ditch it entirely I will wholeheartedly consider your product again… blah blah blah. Nice letters work better. I write lots of letters especially to companies that have made a leap in the right direction. And I usually receive grateful replies for the feedback. It may take years for the results to trickle around, but it feels pretty good when it finally does. And yes, I like my baking soda and vinegar for now. ☺

  6. Esther says

    Wow… I am using their laundry soap and want to switch, now. But what do you recommend for hard water and fluff??? :(
    That is so sad and takes all trust away!!!

      • says

        Fluff usually means cloth diapers :)
        Ester-if that is what you mean, what kind of diapers do you have? I make my own laundry detergent and used it fine with my flats, pre-folds, and Thirsties covers.

        • Esther says

          Yes, thats what I mean lol. I have BGs, BBs and a bunch of fitteds I made from bamboo velour and cotton hemp fleece for under wool covers. I thought the home made doesn’t rinse clean? But then, I heard CS leaves residue as well… ?How often did you strip, if at all?

          • says

            I never stripped my diapers, but flats and prefolds are as simple as you can get, and they’re very easy to care for :) I don’t know if homemade would work with your diapers, since they’re made from different materials (flats and prefolds are just plain cotton).

            • Alysha C says

              I used to strip my diapers every 2-3 months but now that I’m using the Rockin Green I’ve not had to strip at all.

  7. Diana says

    I’d definitely respond, honestly and politely. (Speaking the truth in love, ya know ;)) Not sure exactly what I’d say though. Good luck with it!

  8. Brooke says

    I only have used Charlies soap twice, and so I have a bag sitting on the laundry shelf never being used because after I received it I was bothered by the fact that I wasted a HUGE amount of water in my top loader to “clean” it out, and then washed items only to have them come out with the problems they went in with. Any garment washed 10 times is probably going to have less stains etc than a garment washed only once, so I am not sure I buy that whole keep washing it line. Also, it disturbed me that they used it to clean up oil from the floor of the factory and on the machines. and when the line from the company is “It cleans everything from false teeth to diesel engines.” I don’t know I have been skeptical of CS since before I purchased it, but wanted to believe in it, however, I never have been convinced, and your research, and information only further confirm my previous concerns.

  9. KJ says

    I went to the charliesoap.com site since I use these products too! I discovered they have downloadable (.pdf) data sheets for the products — (click on “Products” and then the link for “data sheets” under each product). The all-purpose cleaner DOES show a hazardous ingredient of 2-BUTOXYETHANOL at less than 4%. The data sheets for both the powder and liquid laundry soaps do NOT list any hazardous ingredients. Hope this helps!

  10. says

    Is Charlie’s Soap manufactured in the Czech Republic? If not, then listing the ingredient in a foreign language so it’s hard for consumers to search for it is shady and unethical, IMO.

    And this is why I am SO skeptical of other “natural” cleansers, like Shaklee, that make finding out the ingredients SO hard. A lot of “green, natural” cleaning products contain the exact chemicals most are trying to avoid. They are charging a premium for being “natural” when they aren’t- in my mind, that borders on fraud!

    BTW- I thought ammonia was the characteristic smell of windex?

    • Katie says

      Not sure on the manufacturing country. I know Windex usually does have ammonia, but this smell from the Charlie’s Soap is seriously strong. Maybe Windex uses it in smaller amounts. I don’t know, but I just Googled it with “windex” quickly and even without clicking on links I saw 3-5 sites that listed it in windex. ??? Tangled webs…

    • says


      We should all be very skeptical of “natural” products and their ingredient listings.

      There are so many ways to “hide” questionable ingredients, or create “natural” workarounds that sound better but still contain the same questionable components, or simply not divulge *all* the ingredients . . .

      I have a healthy skepticism of any natural product from a larger company that moves to the forefront of general good opinion. Particularly in the area of detergents. If a “natural” cleanser seems “to good to be true” than it probably is.

      Frankly, the “bad” components work beautifully at removing stains/cleansing/overall great performance. That’s why companies use them.

      There’s my 2 cents.

  11. says

    Oh, I just ordered more laundry soap today and just checked my liquid Charlie’s Soap Laundry bottle but there’s no ingredients listed. I don’t know what to do now :( I think I’ll cancel the order & replace it with BioKleen instead.

    Here’s what listed as the BioKleen ingredients…
    INGREDIENTS: Surfactants and Conditioners from Coconut and/or Corn, Orange Peel Extract, Grapefruit Seed and Pulp Extract, Linear Sulfonate, Enzymes, Filtered Water.

    BioKleen Sounds much safer to me. I order from Azure Standard.

    Thank you for your honesty and hard work with this. We appreciate you letting us know :)

    • Katie says

      I like a lot of Biokleen stuff too, but their dishwasher detergent, my ultimate favorite, just stopped working for me. I am looking into it…but my working theory does not look positive for the company’s ethics, either. I can’t even BELIEVE it. I will keep you updated as soon as I hear back on my emails to the company!

      • says

        I bought Biokleen dishwasher soap based on your glowing review. I was so excited to use it but was quickly disappointed. It left white powder on all of our dishes, no matter how little I used. It didn’t clean any food off of the dishes (and we rinse big stuff off beforehand) and it started building up on all the stainless steel sides of our dishwasher. My husband made me promise to never buy it again. :)

        • Alysha C says

          I now use Melaleuca products but when I used to use BioKleen’s dishwasher detergent I would put it in the cup with some water. It would disolve and work much better.

          Hope that helps!

        • Katie says

          I must know – when did you buy your Biokleen? I have a theory that they may have changed their formula, because I’m telling you, it was when we opened a new tub bought last fall that all heck broke loose in our DW. Thank you! :) Katie

          • says

            It was just before Thanksgiving last year. I remember because we had a house full of guests and I only had the Biokleen to use in the DW. Bad mistake.

        • Katie says

          So it was okay for you, say, before last fall, and now it’s not going well? Hmph. Thank you! :) Katie

    • Elizabeth says

      does anyone use ecover?? we have used them for years for our dishwasher and dish soap and i am in love with them (we buy it through frontier). i know they are a european company that has been around for a while. i hate to say it, but i kind of trust the europeans a little more than the american businesses with this stuff…. although i will admit i never did really extensive research on the ingredients in there products, so who knows??? i almost would rather be in the dark.

      • Esther says

        I am from Europe and have to admit I never had any issues with clean as I do here in the states. Phosphates are a no go there because of the environment and charlie’s told me to use their phosphate hard water booster because the detergent did not get my clothes clean saying their chemists have no evidence that it is enviromentally damaging. I am not a chemist but if a whole country bans it I assume they do it for a reason?

        • says

          Just jumping in here: I love the Ecover dishwashing tablets. They work wonderfully! The powder for some reason, did not work well for me though..? I love Ecover’s hand dishwashing soap as well.

    • says

      oops-need to clarify-I make all my cleaners EXCEPT dishwasher detergent and dish soap. Those two are ones that I’ve tried unsuccessfully to make myself, so I use Costco’s brands of these for now.

  12. shannon says

    I have become jaded Katie in that, I’m not even surprised they would call it natural and tell you the name in Czech. Isn’t that awful? I miss the naive me, the one who thinks the best of people and companies….

    I use Charlies Soap for cloth diapers and have wondered aloud a few times about what is in it. I think I’m ready for a change.

  13. says

    I have had similar run-in’s with the owner of Charlie’s Soap. After doing tons of research for its use with cloth diapers, I have been in touch with him a few times. Disappointing interactions each time. I’m so sorry you had this experience, but a little relieved I’m not the only one with red flags going up! 😐

  14. says

    Shared on FB, both personal and business. I don’t use it, haven’t tried it, and now won’t. I also love soap nuts and use baking soda or vinegar for most other things. I don’t feel the need to try all these “natural” products out there because I suspect, honestly, that almost ALL of them fall into this category. Potentially a bit “safer” but really, not that safe. Unless I recognize and can pronounce ALL the ingredients, I don’t buy it. Shampoo has this issue too, even the “natural” ones contain SLES. Good thing I went ‘no poo. :)

    I’m disappointed, but not surprised. I hope everyone sees this.

    • Esther says

      I use chagrinvalleysoap with baking soda n vinegar as poo. Have you heard of them? As far as I know they’re all natural and their squalane (face/eye mousse) has done wonders for me…

      • says

        I use baking soda + water, and add some lemon or grapefruit essential oil to it. The EO was really critical for me to have success with it (I tend towards oily hair and I’m pregnant too). I’ve been doing this for…six months? And I really like it.

  15. Elizabeth says

    when i started cloth diapering two years ago, i came across charlie’s soap constantly as a recommended option for cleaning diapers. i did a little digging around on it, but not much….what i heard were a lot of moms complaining that their kids had bad skin reactions to it. while others sang its praises, i still felt that hearing about the bad reactions was enough of a reason to bypass it as an option in my house. since then i’ve been part of co-ops that have bought it in bulk and i have to admit i have been tempted once or twice. but now i am so glad i listened to my gut and never decided to try it!! although, i have to say, i still have never found a chemical-free laundry soap that i am happy with. i’ve used the make-your-own recipes and soap nuts without much success. isn’t there SOMETHING out there that is truly natural and works well???

    • Sarah says

      I first bought soap nuts after I wasn’t that impressed with Rockin’ Green. I started using them for my cloth diapers and now use them for all my laundry. We LOVE them. Easy to travel with, and all natural (they are berries, after all!). You should definitely look into them if you are really wanting a chemical-free laundry solution. Good luck!

      I also get mine where Katie recommends them:

      • Elizabeth says

        Sarah–Thank you so much for the recommendation. I actually have a HUGE bag of the Naturoli soap nuts that I have tried and tried to use-without success. I even tried boiling them in water and using the concentrated solution. They seem to work fine for a week or so. But its always after using them for a week that I start to see issues. I’m thinking it must have something to do with the hardness of our water. I know they work better if you use them in warm water instead of cold, which I always tried to do. Do you mind sharing what your routine is??

        • Katie says

          We have pretty hard water too. If I’m washing in cold, I soak in hot water in a cup for at least 3 minutes first. I use 5 nuts in the bag, and I toss them if I run them under water, squeezing, and don’t get suds. Usually goes 6-7 washes, I’m guessing, in cold water mostly. Are you saying one bag of nuts doesn’t work after a week or soap nuts in general, even fresh ones, stop working? :) Katie

    • John says

      Here is a link to some thing that is natural. I have used this website more to find out about other products though. I like how they break down the items that are in other products and why they are bad for you. It is hard to find any thing natural with out SLS or SLES in it. I have not tried this myself but do like the information listed about what is bad and the reason why. They do not list what is in their product as at the moment they do not want others copying it which I find hard for a company to do since they talk about other products and how certain items do not have to even be listed on the label.


  16. Jill says

    All I can say is that I am so glad that I/We went to Vinegar and Baking Soda for cleaning over 6 years ago and love it. I have never used this product and now am glad. Thanks for the heads up

  17. says

    Before I began using cloth diapers I researched a lot of detergents and after reading about how many babies were getting “chemical burns” from Charlie’s Soap I decided to steer clear. We use Country Save for our CD stash and it has been great! Plus its the least expensive that I could find. Amazon sells it in bulk and you can get 15% off by making regular orders.

  18. says

    I’ve had similar run-arounds but in other arenas. I called Magic Bullet and asked if they had BPA in their container and got a complete NO ANSWER.
    No matter how I worded the question.

    I guess one way to avoid all of these problems is just to save time and….not clean :-).

    But seriously, this is quite disconcerting information. I had never even heard of Charlie’s soap but I will for sure not be using it. And I do think that our obsession w/ cleanliness can get us into trouble. A lot of cleaning around the home can be done w/ very simple ingredients…or none at all. Thanks, Katie.

  19. says

    Well that’s a bummer, I have been recommending Charlie’s for over a year now. Good think I didn’t place the order I have on hold at amazon! Thanks for the info. Better late than never!

  20. Sonia says

    I haven’t used any of their product but I have hear about they’re laundry detergent giving babies bad rashes when used on cloth diapers. I don’t know anymore beyond that though.

  21. Jennifer says

    I think that this post is an overreaction. First of all, the ingredient in question – 2-BUTOXYETHANOL – is ONLY in the Charlie’s Soap Cleaner (clearly listed on their website in the easy-to-find fact sheet). It is not in the Laundry Detergent. Furthermore, it is not HARD to find information about it. One quick google search yielded a Wikipedia article, and that article contains several references including the CDC fact sheet (which does differentiate between 2-Butoxyethanol and 2-Butoxyethanol acetate as two separate products even though the article linked here lumps them together as one). It appears that OSHA does not classify 2-Butoxyethanol as toxic, and that the only way it has been shown to become carcinogenic is when ANIMALS are exposed to LARGE QUANTITIES over a LONG PERIOD OF TIME.

    In short, I will continue to give Charlie’s Soap my laundry business, as I always have. I don’t think they’ve been hiding anything, nor do I think they were misleading in using “2-Butoxyethanol” as the listed ingredient.

    For those with diaper troubles w/Charlies, we DID find them to be correct that the residue from previous detergents was causing the rash. We completely stripped all the diapers AND cleaned the washer out using Charlie’s guidelines and have had ZERO cases of diaper rash reappear w/multiple babies.

    • Katie says

      I definitely appreciate your perspective, but I was just so disappointed that CS told me it was “butylcellosolv” in their product, and THAT was difficult to find information on. Again, I’d rather stick with vinegar, which I could drink, than something that is toxic in large quantities and I have it in small quantities. Thanks for the info about the diapers for everyone else! :) Katie

  22. says

    Ugh, great. I reviewed them too and had no idea about this. I thought it was safe. I will not be using that cleaner again. I do use the powder soap and have been with great success though. I wonder how bad it is. It never gives us rashes and cleans so well.

  23. sara p-c says

    for mamas looking for another cloth diaper detergent, i’ve had nothing but success with crunchy clean, a wahm company with a very bare-bones ingredient list and very dedicated customer service.

  24. says

    Please don’t be too hasty in judging this. I know we all want the best for our families, but keep in mind that all chemicals (even salt!) have an MSDS and everything is a poison in the right dose. According to the MSDS for Charlie’s Soap, the amount 2-butoxyethanol is not significant enough to be considered a toxicological hazard. The reports you have been reviewing would be for 2-butoxyethanol on its own.
    From the MSDS:
    “* At 4%, Charlie’s Soap All-Purpose Cleaner does not possess the occupational health risk associated with exposure to undiluted 2-butoxyethanol. Charlie’s Soap All-Purpose Cleaner contains no known EPA priority pollutants, heavy metals, or chemicals listed under RCRA, CERCLA, or CWA. None of the ingredients in Charlie’s Soap All-Purpose Cleaner are regulated or listed as potential cancer agents by Federal OSHA, NTP, or IARC.”

    • Katie says

      I’m just disconcerted that in large doses, it causes cancer, but in small doses, not? How about exposure over a decade of small doses? I’m probably over careful, but I was upset to feel “duped”. I do know everything has an MSDS, but not all ingredients rate so poorly at EWG.

      Thank you for the reminder of temperance, though… :) Katie

      • says

        I understand your feelings of being duped – the company, when asked, should have been upfront with you about the actual name of the chemical rather than the brand name. My husband is an environmental scientist with a background in chemistry, conducts safety and environmental training for many different industries, and works with these sorts of issues day in and day out. He stresses that dose makes the poison (of any substance!). You would have to find out if the the small doses of butoxyethanol accumulate in a persons body in order to determine if a lifetime of small doses leads to the same effect as a large dose. To use salt as an example again, a large dose can have mutagenic effects, but no one would dispute that small doses (i.e. what you sprinkle on your eggs in the morning) daily will not have the same effect. I don’t know that that’s true of the butoxyethanol, but it would be easily discovered by looking at it’s MSDS (as opposed to the Charlie’s Soap MSDS) and extrapolating that information to the amount that is found in Charlie’s Soap.

        I agree that it’s frustrating to try and use green or halthy products only to find that they are just as irritating to the body, if not more so. I appreciate your blog and your openness to comments. It helps everyone when we can hash these things out together! Thank you!

    • Jen says

      I agree. This is very interesting on top of the Franklin Goose fiasco. “green” and “natural” do not necessarily imply “moral”

  25. hollie moyer says

    all I know is that Charlie’s gave my baby a chemical burn when I used it on his cloth diapers… that’s enough to keep me away from the stuff.

  26. says

    My husband is an auto mechanic. We have an HE washer. Would you recommend Biokleen Bac-out for pretreating and oxygen bleach (like Seventh Generation??) for soaking before the Extreme 18x soap nuts product? Do you have any other suggestions? Honestly that seems like a lot to do for each load of his clothes. I currently use Shaklee laundry products with a vinegar rinse, but was thinking of trying something else. Any thoughts on Shaklee laundry products?

    • Katie says

      If oil stains are the issue, I prefer dish soap and hot water myself for the pretreat! I have never found a laundry detergent that gets out oil stains, but maybe it’s b/c I wash in cold water a lot. Shaklee is a decent company, but I think they may do a little “greenwashing” (making products sound better than they are) themselves. It’s tough to nail down exact ingredients, which is a red flag. But if it’s the only thing that works that you want to deal with, it’s way better than conventional. :) Katie

    • Donna C says

      I just found a pinterest pin about using white chalk to remove oil from laundry. Perhaps you could try that?

  27. says

    I’ve been using Charlie’s Soap for diapers and all our laundry for almost 3 years now…have had no troubles with diaper rash. We have really hard water and a HE machine. Tried soap nuts and Rockin’ Green, neither worked as well as Charlie’s…but when we move in a month I’ll be switching.

  28. says

    I’m not a supporter of Charlie’s Soap necessarily, but from an totally detached point of view, I’d say that the over-the-top negative reaction toward them happening here is due to your perception of ‘being duped’. This really wouldn’t be an issue if you had discovered this last year when you originally tested this. No, it’s not as ‘green’ as we’d like, but nothing is hardly as it seems these days. That’s why we must all do our homework and pray for wisdom.

    The product does a good job for what it is.

    I would suggest being very respectful (as a representative of Christ this is a must) and simply tell the company that the ingredient included in their product prohibits you because of your convictions to either use or endorse their product.

    And then I’d be careful how you speak of them on your blog that touts Christ’s name.

    Just a personal opinion from one who’s been down this road before.

  29. John says

    Here is one I have ordered but just ordered it the other day. They also sell other products as well. I have not looked into any of the other products other then the laundry detergent. They do not list every thing on the label though as like the Dr. Mercola site they are allowed to not list every ingredient. They did tell me they used SLES and why they used it so seem to be open on that front. Below is a link to the product so you can check it out to see if it meet’s your needs. Like I said I just ordered it and it has not shipped out yet. I also hate how products that say they are natural are any thing but.


  30. Vicki Booth says

    I just found you while searching for negative things about Charlie’s Soap. I just washed a brand new load of towels in it and several of them came out looking like I’d dumped bleach on them. Needless to say I’m very upset about it and I have e-mailed the company to see if they will do anything about it. Just be warned: you can ruin items with this product.

    • John says

      I look forward to what they have to say. I bought it as I thought it would be good for my mom to use as she gets rashes and think it is from the laundry detergent she uses. I washed an old bathroom floor mat in it and it came out softer then any thing else I have washed it in. I have not washed any thing else in it though but plan on doing that this weekend. I know what y0u mean by it looking like bleach though as I had used oxyclean in the wash one time and it washed out the color of one of my shirt. I do not use that any more. One thing that would be nice to know if where did you get the soap from as that might be an issue. Maybe the company had another product and it got in the wrong container. Maybe it was the towels themselves. I have not used this soap on any thing new so have no idea what it would do on them.

      • Vicki Booth says

        E-mailed the company, never got a reply. I’d forgotten to report back, but I guess I have nothing to report!

  31. Robin via Facebook says

    I see others wondered abt the laundry soap too. Hmmm… I have a lg bottle that will prob last 6mo. and then… maybe I’ll check out the soap nuts.

  32. says

    I’m so glad I didn’t buy CS and went with Rockin’ Green instead…but I’m off to look at the label! Have you reviewed the Rockin’ Green detergent?

    • Katie Kimball @ Kitchen Stewardship says

      I am using Rockin’ Green right now – the CS laundry soap doesn’t have this weird ingredient, btw, just the all-purpose spray.
      :) Katie

  33. Kristina via Facebook says

    I knew charlie’s soap cleaner was bad! Had a horrible reaction to it the first time I used it… glad I wasn’t totally crazy. :)

  34. says

    Charilie’s Laundry Soap stained my washer where you put it in the fluid container part :o( After reading your first post on why you stopped using it I gave it up completely. I wash with Soap Nuts liquid soap now.

  35. says

    It’s the All-purpose spray that has the junk in it, not the laundry soap, but the whole veiled ingredients made me question the brand entirely. I wil be talking about what I’ve tried on cloth diapers sometime next month, hopefully!

  36. Laura via Facebook says

    Can’t wait to hear your adventures with cloth diapers. I am on #2 with cloth and for some reason with both there has been a period around age 2 months where they leak through everything … multiple brands of cloth and disposables!

  37. says

    I was alarmed to read this article and am passionate about healthy products and being able to trust what is on the label. Because I had been listed on their site as a distributor, I needed to call them to find out for myself if this ingredient was in their laundry soap. IT IS NOT in the powdered laundry soap. The MSDS sheet is no longer available. In my opinion, I don’t believe we should have to google for hours whether a product is healthy for our families. We should trust products to be what they lead us to believe. Herein lies the problem with products these days. Because of this type of distrust, I have created a growing line of skin care and laundry soap that is truly natural. I list ALL my ingredients on the label, required or not. I am a homeschool mom, a follower of Jesus, and believe God has created all we need for toxin free care for our families without breaking the bank. It really is that simple. BLessings!

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