A couple years back I decided to try washing other things with Soap Nuts, just to see how well it worked. I made a liquid from them and used that to wash the toilets, the sinks, the dishes. I made a scrub with baking soda and Soap Nuts liquid and scrubbed at my stove top. I even used the scrub in the shower and used it as an exfoliant. It worked great!
I also washed my hair by scrubbing my scalp with baking soda. Then I poured some Soap Nuts liquid on my hair, rubbed that in really well, gave myself a conditioning rinse with vinegar, and thoroughly rinsed with clear water (so I wouldn't smell like a pickle!).
All of these different ways to clean with Soap Nuts worked. Some worked just as well or even better than the products I could buy from the store, but I did learn a few things.
- Soap Nuts are not a stain remover.
- Soap Nuts are not a whitener.
- Vigorously rinse the baking soda out of your hair before adding vinegar, unless you want bubbles all over your head!
- Soap Nuts liquid must be refrigerated, as it is a natural product with no preservatives and it will spoil if left out.
- Likewise, Soap Nuts will not stay in your refrigerator for more than about a week before it will spoil. So keep the majority of the liquid in the freezer and take it out when you need it.
- Strain the Soap Nuts liquid very well before adding it to a spray bottle, else the tiny bits will clog up your sprayer.
- And most importantly I learned, contrary to what some people have been taught, that water cleans things, not suds! Soap softens the water so it can do its job more effectively, but all those bubbles you are used to seeing with the regular soap you buy at the store? Those are a company trick to make you think you are getting better results. So don't worry about the lack of suds with Soap Nuts. And that antibacterial soap? Forget about it! Under most circumstances, antibacterial soap can actually be worse for you to use than plain soap and water.
In the end, I went back to shampooing my hair with shampoo because it was just easier. But I found a healthier alternative for my hair that doesn't have sulfates (that are drying and damaging to hair). It is a bit more expensive than the cheap shampoos I had gone with before, but so much less expensive than the fancy shampoos I had tried in the past that made no noticeable difference in my hair at all.
Although now that I'm writing this blog, I am considering going back to poo-less. Hmm... I'll think about it. :) But I will certainly wait until summer break, so I can stay home for a couple weeks during the transition process! ha-ha!
I also went with another all-purpose cleaner instead of bothering with making liquid and storing it in the refrigerator or freezer. However, I did find a healthy alternative and use a product that is all-natural and non-toxic. And with the price coming in at around $1 a bottle, it is much less expensive than the cheapest toxic cleaners I can find at the grocery store.
So if I had to and something crazy happened - like a job loss or something - I know that I can, with a little effort, make Soap Nuts work for general cleaning on the body and around the house. And that gives me peace of mind.