5 Best Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent Brands That Actually Work

best non toxic laundry detergent brands

Finding a non-toxic laundry detergent that actually works can seem impossible. Most brands are either crazy expensive or don’t wash your clothes at all. I tested five of the most popular non-toxic laundry detergent brands; here are the winners.

  • Best Overall: Branch Basics
  • Best Scent: Truly Free

Best non-Toxic Laundry Detergent Brands, Ranked

1. Branch Basics Laundry Concentrate

Best Overall
Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent

Price: $69 for Laundry Bundle

Customer Reviews: 4.6/5 stars

PROS: Powerful concentrate, super-gentle formula for sensitive skin & babies, one bottle lasts up to 256 loads.

CONS: Don’t offer any scented options, do have to mix the concentrate yourself, online available online.

Branch Basics is an awesome brand that really started to gain popularity over the last couple of years.

What I love most about them is that they are 100% transparent with their ingredient list. You can find all the ingredients on their website and the concentrate bottle. No hidden additives.

Their formula is plant and mineral-based, preservative- and synthetic fragrance-free. The concentrate is virtually scentless. It’s also made with chamomile extract, which adds skin-soothing benefits.

Branch Basics’ formula is incredibly gentle, making it a great choice for people with sensitive skin and allergies and even gentle enough for babies.

Even though it only has a handful of natural ingredients, it is quite powerful. You don’t need a lot of detergent to get your laundry clean. I tested it with some pretty heavy deodorant stains (testing natural deodorants…sigh), and it washed them all out in one wash.

The same goes for odours.

Workout clothes, used towels, and socks all came out smelling fresh and clean after one wash. No leftover musty smells!

It may seem more pricey than the other natural laundry detergents on this list but actually it comes out cheaper per load. One concentrate bottle will last up to 256 loads! That’s far more loads in one product compared to the other brands on this list.

The only reason I docked points off is for ease of use is because it comes as a concentrate. Yes, you do need to mix it with water yourself, but it’s really quite simple. The bottle shows you exactly where to fill up to. It’s also only available online.

2. Truly Free Laundry Wash

Best Affordable
Truly Free Laundry Wash

Photo: Truly Free

Price: $19.95

Customer Reviews: 4.3/5 stars

PROS: Ultra-concentrated formula, the best toxin-free formula that smells like conventional detergent, affordable.

CONS: No unscented options, online available online.

Truly Free is a newer, non-toxic laundry detergent brand. Their laundry detergent is toxin-free and uses a powerful plant-based ‘quadra-salt’ technology for cleansing, stain and odour removal.

What I like about Truly Free is that their formula is 100% toxin-free, affordable and offers BOTH essential oil and unscented options.

It comes in little refill pouches which helps significantly reduce plastic waste with each order.

This is a great choice for those looking for a powerful, non-toxic laundry detergent that is more affordable and has scent options.

The only downside is that you can only order directly from their online website. But they also offer a 10% discount if you subscribe to a product.

3. Thieves Laundry Soap

Best for Cold Water

Price: $52

PROS: Great cleaning power, nice signature ‘Thieves’ essential oil scent, works well in cold water.

CONS: Don’t offer an unscented option, only available online, more pricey than other brands.

Thieves laundry soap by Young Living is a cult favourite amongst the natural, non-toxic community. And for good reason!

Their laundry soap is non-toxic, free of SLS, dyes, petrochemicals, formaldehyde, phosphates, synthetic perfumes, chlorine and optical brighteners (all of those scary chemicals I mentioned above!).

They are 100% transparent with their ingredient list, disclosing all their plant-based cleansers on their website and the product itself.

Thieves Laundry Soap Review

Thieves is an excellent option for those who want a powerful, non-toxic laundry detergent that works in cold water. This soap will meet all your laundry needs if you’ve got kiddos!

You only need about 1/4-1/2 a cup full for a heavy load, which is far less than what you need for most other brands to get it to wash well.

It has a lovely light citrus clove essential oil scent (their signature Thieves scent), which is a nice touch (given that it’s not a synthetic fragrance!). However, they don’t offer an unscented, essential oil-free option for people with allergies and sensitivities.

If you wash your clothes in cold water, Thieves Laundry Soap is the best natural laundry detergent for cold water.

It’s also the most expensive option on this list. One bottle lasts only 64 loads.


Thieve’s Dupe
REVIVE Laundry Detergent

Price: $19.95

Customer Reviews: 4.9/5 stars

PROS: Ultra-concentrated formula, cheaper Thieves dupe, lovely essential oil scent.

CONS: No unscented options, online available online.

REVIVE Essential Oils is a natural laundry detergent made from a plant-based formula that is free from toxic chemicals and harmful ingredients. It is free of synthetic fragrances, phosphates, phthalates, parabens, and dyes.

REVIVE Laundry Detergent Review

This laundry detergent is comparable to Thieves Laundry Soap, down to the essential oil scent – for a fraction of the price! Basically the best dupe – smells the same, cleans the same for half the price.

REVIVE is a budget-friendly option with a convenient ready-to-go pourable jug, just like typical commercial detergents.

It cleans very well and has a gentle “Immunity Boost” essential oil scent (the equivalent of Thieves signature blend). If you’re looking for a non-toxic laundry detergent that smells good – this is it! And it’s not synthetic fragrance, just essential oils.

Unfortunately, they don’t offer an unscented version.

If you’re just switching over to non-toxic laundry detergent this is a really good option for you. It is just like a commercial detergent, but it is just a healthier, toxin-free alternative. It smells great, tackles stains and odours like a champ, and it’s affordable.

5. Meliora Laundry Powder

Best Powder
Meliora Laundry Powder

Photo: Meliora Cleaning Products

Price: $27

Customer Reviews: 4.5/5 stars

Where to Buy: Meliora Cleaning Company, Mighty Nest, Earth Hero, Amazon

PROS: Many essential oil and unscented options, available at more online stores.

CONS: Not as powerful as other brands, comes in small packages.

Meliora is a non-toxic laundry powder. They are 100% transparent with the ingredient list on their website, disclosing every little thing that goes into the laundry powder.

Their detergent is also fragrance-free, offering options naturally scented with organic certified essential oils (also disclosed online). Plus, their products come in 100% eco-friendly, plastic-free packaging!

They are MADE SAFE certified, meaning their laundry products meet strict human and environmental safety standards.

This powder cleans fairly well. However, it’s less effective at tackling stains and odours than Branch Basics and Thieves.

If you’re looking for a non-toxic, plastic-free laundry powder, this is an excellent option for you!

READ: 21 Simple Ways To Make Your Home Non Toxic For Your Health

READ: How to Get Fragrance Out of Clothes

Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent brands To Skip

With more and more people switching from conventional to non-toxic laundry detergents, many companies are ‘greenwashing’ their detergents.

You might have noticed that many laundry detergents now include buzzwords like ‘99.9% natural’ or ‘nature’, ‘eco’ or ‘plant-powered’.

Please be aware of these marketing tricks! Many of these ‘eco’ brands still include harmful ingredients in their formulas.

So, if you’re looking for an honest, non-toxic laundry detergent that cleans well, I would skip the brands listed below.

Some of the most chemical-laden laundry detergent brands include:

  • Tide
  • Gain
  • Sunlight
  • Purex
  • Persil
  • Mrs. Meyers
  • Arm & Hammer
  • Woolite
  • Dreft Baby

Mrs. Meyers

I often see this brand being presented as ‘clean.’

I also used these products for a while before I found out they they weren’t ‘toxin-free’ as I thought!

Their laundry detergent contains laureth-7, an ethoxylated substance that can be contaminated with 1,4-Dioxane (a carcinogen).

It also contains methylisothiazolinone, benzisothiazolinone, and alcohol ethoxylates, all of which pose a risk of endocrine disruption, reproductive and developmental toxicity, and damage to DNA.

Their formulas are known for their scents – which come from synthetic fragrances. (source)


Many people think this brand is non-toxic, but I’m sorry to say it’s not.

Their laundry detergent formula contains a slew of harmful ingredients such as fatty acid methyl esther sulfonates/ethoxylates, PEG 300 monooctyl ether, fragrance, polyacrylates, disodium distyrylbiphenyl disulphonate, alcohol ethoxylates, propanediol and more.

These toxic ingredients have health concerns of endocrine disruption, developmental and reproductive effects, damage to DNA, allergy and sensitivity reactions, cancer, and so many more. This one is a no on my list. (source)

Seventh Generation

Although this isn’t the worst option and is still better than most conventional laundry detergents, it contains a few ingredients of which I’m not the biggest fan.

Their laundry detergent formula contains laureth-6, which could contain traces of 1,4-dioxane (a carcinogen). It also has sodium lauryl sulfate, which can irritate the eyes, skin, and lungs.

It also may be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane. Methylisothiazolinone and benzisothiazolinone, which are both high-contact allergens and can be neurotoxic, are also included. (source)


According to EWG, the new laundry detergent formula from Attitude is EWG Verified, meaning that it has passed their strict health and transparency standards.

There are still better options, as mentioned in the list above because it still contains some ingredients that I would steer clear of.

Ingredients such as ethyl linalool, hedione, and green tea leaf extract may cause allergy and skin irritation in people prone to sensitivities and allergies.

Additionally, benzyl acetate, dimethylheptenal, phenethyl alcohol and others pose health risks of respiratory problems and developmental, reproductive and endocrine effects. (source)

Earth Breeze

Earth Breeze Laundry Detergent Review
Earth Breeze Laundry Detergent

These convenient liquid-less eco laundry sheets are an okay option.

They’re generally less non-toxic than conventional laundry detergents but their ingredients could be better. They are biodegradable and safer for the environment, but their formula could improve.

Earth Breeze laundry sheets contain polyethylene glycol, primary alcohol ethoxylates, sodium lauryl sulfate, and fragrance, which, as mentioned above, can cause irritation, allergies, respiratory issues, systemic organ effects and cancer (source).

I was disappointed to see that they were not transparent with their ingredients. They are not listed on the product, but you can find them on their website.

I tested two packs at home and found they didn’t thoroughly wash my clothes. I thought it may have been a fluke the first couple of loads, so I tried out two full packs all with the same result.

My clothes felt musty and didn’t smell clean. It didn’t remove stains or odour well, either.

My family unanimously agreed these did not make the cut as an effective natural laundry detergent.


ECOS is a popular brand and a good option for slowly easing into non-toxic living.

It can also be found in many stores now, like Costco, and is budget-friendly, making it a good option for some.

The brand bans over 500+ harmful ingredients from their formula, making it a pretty good, non-toxic option.

The laundry detergent is also quite effective at washing clothing, which is essential!

The few ingredients that could be better on their list are methylisothiazolinone and cocamidopropyl betaine.

Overall, a good easy-to-find, budget-friendly non toxic laundry detergent option. (source)

Does All Detergent Have Carcinogens?

Most conventional laundry detergents at the store are full of harmful toxic ingredients – many known carcinogens.

With more people looking to switch to a non-toxic laundry detergent, new brands are surfacing with safe, non-toxic and natural laundry detergents. These non-toxic laundry detergent brands ensure none of these carcinogenic ingredients are included in their formulas.

The list above gives you five of the best non toxic laundry detergent brands based on their natural formulas, cleaning power and high customer ratings.

Why Use Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent?

We wear clothes for several hours every day, our whole lives.

Your skin is your largest organ and acts as a delicate membrane between your internal and external environment, which also can absorb things from the outside.

When you use regular laundry detergent that is made with all kinds of toxic chemicals and irritants, your skin is actually absorbing those harmful substances, and it can affect your health and wellbeing!

You also breathe these toxic gases and synthetic fragrances, which can lead to respiratory problems.

Using non toxic laundry detergent is the best thing you can do for yourself and your family to make sure the clothing you wear isn’t actually making you sick.

Washing your clothes shouldn’t be scary! You should feel confident that your clothes are clean, safe and non-toxic.

Learn how to transition to non-toxic laundry detergent the easy way!

What Is The Safest Non-Toxic Laundry Detergent?

There is no one safest laundry detergent out there, but the list above gives you five great non-toxic laundry detergent options that are safe, natural and effective in cleaning your laundry.

To make sure your laundry detergent is safe, you can use the list of toxic ingredients to look out for as a guide when scanning ingredients to look out for.

EWG is also an excellent resource for looking at the ingredients of any laundry detergents you may be considering.

All You need to do is search for the product, and it’ll show you a general health and safety rating and a list of potentially harmful ingredients.

The safest laundry detergent is made from natural ingredients and free of harmful chemicals and fragrances.

Related Post: 21 Simple Ways To Make Your Home Non Toxic For Your Health

What’s your favourite non-toxic laundry detergent? Do you use one that isn’t on this post?

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