WHAT ARE SOAP NUTS?
They are the fruits of a small tree called Sapindus Mukorossi tree, native to the Himalayas and the mountainous region between India and Nepal. Also called soapberry nut husks, they are indeed the husk (shell) from soapberry nuts. Once picked and left to dry in the sun, these amazing shells contain a natural cleaning agent called saponin that naturally contains a cleaning agent that works like detergent.
The great thing about saponin is that it works as a surfactant, breaking the surface tension of the water to penetrate the fibers of your clothing, lifting stains from the fabric, and leaving dirt suspended in the water that is rinsed away.
Soap Nuts are also great for septic and grey water systems. They do not produce a lot foam unlike chemically made laundry and cleaning products, made with SLS (Sodium Laureth Sulphates) which are harmful to the water cycle and the environment.
We source our Soapnuts from two village families based in the rural parts of Gujarat.
Indian Soap Berries are found in the wild and collected over time while multiple trips to forests and unknown areas.
How ARE SOAP NUTS ECO-FRIENDLY?
All Soap Nuts are organically grown by mother earth, wild-harvested, meaning they are gathered from wild trees grown without any kind of chemicals, fertilizers, or pesticides. One of its main characteristics is that it doesn’t need fertile soil to flourish, it grows in hard environmental conditions and it also protects its native areas from the risk of erosion. It is incredibly resilient to diseases and doesn’t need any fertilizer or chemicals.
HOW TO USE SOAPNUTS?
1) Place 4-6 soap nuts into a muslin pouch (comes with the product). You can even use a thin cotton cloth, put them in the middle and then use some twine around the top to secure the nuts inside.
2) Bring 2 cups of water to a boil, place the pouch in the water and turn down the flame.
3) Use your hand pressure to juice out the foam extract from the soap nuts.
4) Put them to dry (they can be reused to make more soap liquid) and once cold, pour the soap nut concentrate in a bottle. Store it in the fridge upto a week.
Dilute the liquid concentrate with water for hand washing the garments.
SOAPNUTS FOR LAUNDRY DETERGENT -
You can use soap berry liquid concentrate (steps mentioned above) as a laundry detergent by adding a few tablespoons of the concentrate (depending on load size) to your washing machine detergent drawer.
1) Place 4-6 in a muslin bag, add a few drops of essential oil if you want to add scent to your laundry. If you use them with cold water (below 30 degrees) kick start their natural cleaning properties by putting them in a mug with hot water for a while prior to use.
2) Close the bag and drop in the washing machine with your clothing.
You can use the same Soapnuts upto 4 washes. Once they start to turn grey and the shells become flimsy you can go right ahead and place them in your compost as they are 100% biodegradable.