Have you ever watched those infomercials on television and thought, "Now, that surely can't actually work" or "Well, right. As if I'm supposed to believe that," when they showed their amazing products? I know you have.
I'll admit it. When Hazelaid sent me Soap Nuts to use in my washing machine, I was skeptical, but definitely interested and willing to try them. My husband, on the other hand, took one look and said, "You are NOT washing our clothes with those things," before walking away.
Right then I knew the test would be if he could tell the difference in his clothes when the time came that I did use this unique way of getting even our dirtiest items clean and fresh.
What are Soap Nuts? They're actually not a nut at all, they're the dried fruit from the Chinese Soapberry tree (seen at right) and have been used for ages for washing clothes. As Soap Nuts get wet, they release saponin (a natural cleaner) and, when placed in the washing machine, leave your clothes not only clean but soft and vibrant as well.
Whether you have allergies, sensitive skin, are washing cloth diapers (they're great for this - check out Hazelaid's FAQs for more cloth diaper information) or just want a natural way to wash your clothes, Soap Nuts are gentle enough to do it all!
Hazelaid's Soap Nuts come with very easy-to-follow instructions, as there isn't really all that much to them. Simply put four Soap Nuts in the provided cotton bag, tie it closed and toss it in the wash along with your dirty clothes. The only added note is that warm water helps release the saponin, so if you are washing your clothes in cold water, it is best to soak the bag of Soap Nuts in a little warm water first and then stick them (and the water they soaked in) into your machine. Sounded easy enough, so I gave it a shot.
I washed two loads of laundry with my new Soap Nuts and after pulling them out and opening up the bag to see how much they had changed, I found that they looked only a slight bit thinner and with less saponin than they originally had. According to Hazelaid, when the shells are depleted and thin and have no shiny pockets of saponin left is when they are to be discarded (they should last around 4-5 loads) so these definitely could still be used for a few more wash cycles.
I also definitely noticed the Soap Nuts had the vinegar smell that Hazelaid mentioned, but that every article of clothing came out completely fresh and clean, not a trace of dirt or a hint of odor. Hazelaid suggests adding a few drops of essential oil to the Soap Nuts if you would prefer a scent, but I like my clothes unscented and was pleased with the clean smell that I found on them.
As Soap Nuts naturally don't produce a large amount of suds (nature doesn't add any chemicals to create bubbles) they were great in my high efficiency washing machine. Even better, the Soap Nuts helped to get rid of some of the chemical residue built up in my machine from all of the previous washings that I've done. And when I'm done with them, Soap Nuts are 100% biodegradable. Good for my family, good for the earth.
The only issue I experienced with using Soap Nuts was not being used to having to pull them out when moving the clothes from the washing machine to the dryer. In both of my test loads, I had a hard time finding the small pouch of Soap Nuts and even ended up shaking out individual items of clothing to find it so that it would not get dried. You have to keep your eyes peeled for that little bag!
Visit Hazelaid to find out more about Soap Nuts, as well as their wonderful Hazelwood and Amber jewelry and how they could help with acid reflux, eczema, rashes, constipation and many more ailments... plus, they look beautiful! If you're not sure, spend some time browsing their testimonials from the many satisfied Hazelaid customers that are now believers. Speaking of which, my husband never had any idea that his clothes were washed with Soap Nuts, so apparently they passed my test!
Become a fan of Hazelaid on Facebook to keep up with their latest news and information and, thanks to their generosity, one person will get to do more than just try out Soap Nuts - they'll get to do 150-200 loads of wash with them!
One lucky person will win (1) 500g bag of Soap Nuts, enough to do 150-200 loads of laundry! ARV $22.95!
To enter to win your 500g bag of Soap Nuts: Visit Hazelaid and tell me one of their other great products that you like AND why you would like to try their Soap Nuts. Please do me the favor of leaving an email address or making absolutely sure it is visible in your profile. I have to have a way to contact the winners.
Extra Entries (available after the mandatory entry above is completed; please leave a separate comment for each entry in order for them to be counted. For example, if you subscribe, leave one comment saying "I subscribe #1" and a separate comment saying "I subscribe #2")
1 Extra Entry if you visit and join the Hazelaid Community.
1 Extra Entry (per giveaway entered) - Enter any (or all) of the giveaways running on Thanks, Mail Carrier for the duration of this giveaway. See the list on the top of my right sidebar - there are some really great ones going on right now and coming up!
1 Extra Entry if you follow me on Twitter and tweet about this giveaway by copying and pasting the tweet below and leaving me the link. Tweet daily for an extra entry every day!
Hazelaid's Soap Nuts for 150-200 loads of laundry naturally! Great for #clothdiapers! @thxmailcarrier http://bit.ly/6eBvbu #win #giveaway
2 Extra Entries per follow method (leave 2 separate comments for each type) if you follow me with Google Friend Connect (see sidebar), subscribe to my RSS feed or subscribe to Thanks, Mail Carrier by email.
3 Extra Entries (leave 3 separate comments) if you put my cute button up on your blog. Please leave an address where it can be found.
3 Extra Entries (leave 3 separate comments) if you blog about this giveaway linking back to Thanks, Mail Carrier and Hazelaid. Please leave an address where it can be found.
Giveaway will end on January 1st at 11:59pm CST. The winner will be chosen by random.org and announced here as well as emailed. The winner will have 48 hours to contact me or respond to notification or a new winner will be chosen. Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents only.
A big thank you to Severine at Hazelaid for providing a sample of Soap Nuts for review as well as (1) 500g bag for one lucky giveaway winner. The opinions shared are my own and if you really need to see more, click here to see how I roll.