Friday, January 3, 2014

Honest Co. Dishwashing Gel vs GrabGreen Dishwashing Detergent

The Battle of the Eco-Friendly Dishwashing Detergents!

Many of my readers don't want to make their own dishwashing detergent and have asked me for options for eco-friendly commercial brands. I did some research and I wanted to try these brands to see how they stacked up against each other.

Which green dishwashing detergent is best? #greencleaning #savetheworld
In the left corner, we have GrabGreen Dishwashing Detergent: 
It's a tiny pre-packaged detergent that you toss into your dishwasher and go! Easy, simple, no fuss. Includes a rinse aid.

In the right corner, we have Honest Company's Dishwashing Gel:
It's a liquid so you can determine how much you need/want to use. You just put it in the dispenser and go! It's also compatible with a rinse aid (but not included).

Round One: 
How Green Can You Go
I use the Environmental Working Group (EWG) to compare products safety. I like them because they break down chemicals into what's harmful and their degree of safety.

They use an A (Safe) to F (may kill you) scale. To put things in perspective, only 6 products got an A score and many of the big names (like Cascade and Finish) got a big fat F.

You can click on the link to EWG above to see where your dishwashing detergent ranks.

EWG's rating of GrabGreen Dishwashing Detergent: B
GrabGreen uses A LOT of different ingredients and some are rated as low as a C, which means they could be potentially harmful, but it's still a lot better than most of the detergents out there.
They also use "blends" in which ingredients aren't specifically noted so we can't actually be sure what's included.

EWG's rating of Honest Co. Dishwashing Gel: A
The Honest Co. really goes out of their way to disclose ingredients. They also use less ingredients to make their gel vs. the GrabGreen brand. The lowest ranked ingredient received a B, but this is one of 6 dishwasher detergents that received an overall rating of an A.
First Round Winner: Honest Company

Round Two
How do they stack up? I compared the two using the HOT cycle with NO drying. I did not use a rinse aid for the GrabGreen because it's included in the detergent. I did use vinegar as a rinse aid for the Honest Co. Brand. Before putting them in the dishwasher, I rinsed the dishes, but I did not scrub them except for the pots and pans that had any caked residue.

GrabGreen: Used 1 pre-filled detergent packet for a full load, including pots and pans.
Good performance. I though it was very similar to my DIY dishwashing powder with vinegar as a rinse aid. The dishes were 97% clean with zero water spot. The glasses didn't appear to have any film on them. Since I didn't scrub, there were still a bit of food particles left on a few of the dishes, but not many at all.

This does have a pleasant scent. I managed to get a sample of the Red Pear and Magnolia which is very mild-- more floral, less fruity. I didn't notice any issues with a scent remaining on the dishes, but I did read reviews that some people complained that the scent became overpowering particularly with the Lemongrass scented version. They do have a non-scented version as well.

Honest Company: I used 2 TBSP of cleaner for my full load, including pots and pans. 

I was actually surprised at how well it cleaned. I thought it did slightly better at removing the remnants of food on dishes, although I did have one dish which had a little bit left on it. The dishes had no film or residue which I could see and there were no water spots. I thought it did slightly better than the GrabGreen product and even my DIY products--- but it was close.

This is a non-scented product. I think that it has a slight smell in the bottle, but honestly, it reminds me of baking soda. No scent is left on the dishes.

If you're expecting super shiny beautiful and perfect dishes you may be disappointed by either brand. Don't get me wrong-- they are very clean, but they are not crystal clear omg sparkly clean.
Round Two Winner: Honest Company (barely)

Round Three 
I am using the price of GrabGreen that I got on and the price for the Honest Company is directly from their website.

GrabGreen: $6.99 for 24 packets which equals out to be…

$0.29 per load

Amazon also offers GrabGreen in their Subscribe and Save Program so you could get an additional 5-15% off the product which would save you $0.04 per load (or a little over a dollar per bag) each time you buy it (if you qualify for the 15% off).

Using Amazon's Subscribe and Save at 15% off: 

Honest Company: $5.95 + shipping for 40 oz which is roughly 40 washings (depending on how much you use). Standard shipping is $5.95 and an additional dollar for any other items purchased.

If you only buy the dishwashing gel, then you'd spend $11.90 (including shipping) on 40 loads which is...

$0.30 per load
Round 3 Winner: GrabGreen 

My Thoughts
Honestly, either product would be a good choice. They are both a lot healthier than a traditional dishwasher detergent and both of them did a good job at cleaning the dishes.

I still stand by my DIY detergents especially since the cost is significantly lower than any brand name purchase, but I decided to try these products because I know that some readers were having trouble finding the ingredients to make the DIY products or simply didn't have the time. So I thought we'd look at some alternatives. These two seemed to have the best reviews so I thought I'd give them a shot and I'm glad I did. They both performed really well.

I hope this review was helpful to you in determining what brand is right for you. Do you have any favorite eco-friendly dishwashing detergents? If so, I'd love to hear about them!

If you are interested in these products here are some links:

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