Since starting on my plastic-free lifestyle, I’ve found detergents and cleaning agents one of the hardest things to purchase without plastic (along with food, toiletries……). I have been hesitant to concoct my own detergents as I wouldn’t want to buy ingredients in large quantities that might not work for me. I’d heard of powered laundry detergent in boxes, but hadn’t heard of the clothing conditioner being produced without plastic.
In my town there’s a “health” shop which does a variety of vegan, and gluten-free ingredients, as well as loose veg, vegan makeup, and toiletries. As many of the vegan products are not plastic-free I had rarely visited the shop. However, I recently found that they supply a brand of detergent that use reusable bottles. Now, I was a bit skeptical at first until I found out how they were doing this. For the first purchase you buy the laundry conditioner in a plastic bottle (the laundry detergent is in a cardboard box anyway) and then for all future purchases you bring back the plastic bottle to be refilled at the store. Washing up liquid, and other household cleaning detergents are also purchased the same way.
There are other brands online that also do laundry detergent in cardboard boxes, and also ones that use coconut husks, but then purchases online are also charged postage fees (and I’m on a budget).
Although it’s not completely plastic-free, it’s definitely a step in the right direction!