Three Gentle Detergents Put To The Test

There are a few reasons why I opt for gentle soaps when I wash my underthings:

  • Regular detergent is harsh on my hands during the hand washing process
  • Gentle detergents often don’t test on animals
  • To extend the life of my undies

In the interest of little critters, keeping my hands from drying out, and possibly extending the life of my undies, I decided to try some gentle lingerie wash. In total I’ve tried three brands: Forever New, Soak, and Eucalan. I have had positive experiences with all of them, but some I’ve liked better than others. So today I’m going to fill you in on how each detergent performed so you can decide which one you might prefer!


  • Forever New


Forever New was the first gentle soap that I tried. It is a powdered detergent with a “powder fresh” sort of scent, and the texture is light and fluffy. It’s a biodegradable formula that’s never tested on animals- a major plus from my perspective! When added to running water it makes a nice bubbly lather to soak your delicates in. As I had hoped, it was a lot nicer to my hands than Tide had been.

Forever New is a traditional detergent in that you are required to manually scrub the dirtiest areas of your garments, soak for around five minutes, and rinse until the water runs clean and all visible traces of the soap have vanished from the garment. Forever New does a great job of getting everything nice and clean, and it’s probably the toughest of the three detergents I’ll be talking about today. However, of the three detergents I’ve tried it is my least favourite, but not because it’s a bad product. I simply prefer the other two because they don’t require that your garments be rinsed after the wash process. If you’re specifically looking for a powdered detergent, Forever New is a good option! (they also have a liquid detergent, but since I haven’t tried it I can’t speak to its quality)


  • Soak


Unlike Forever New, Soak is a liquid soap that claims you can simply soak your bras for 10-15 minutes, remove from the water, lay flat or hang to dry and you’re done! I tried using it as directed the first time, and was surprised with how nice the results were. It felt odd not to rinse off the soap, and to just leave them sitting without scrubbing any problem areas, but it did a decent job getting my bras clean. I would suggest for bras that get more wear and tear, or that have been subjected to a decent amount of sweat, that you do scrub to get the best results though. Using this on my everyday bras in the heat of summer would occasionally leave the armpits a bit dingy if left unscrubbed. If you work the lather through any target areas though, the results are great.

The no-rinse process is the real selling point of this product for me. Rinsing is really what takes up the bulk of my time when I’m hand washing, and is also the prime factor that causes me to put off my washing for too long. So a product that allows me to be kind of lazy and keep my bras clean is basically a dream come true. It’s not an organic product, but it is biodegradable and the inks on the label are water based. Add on that it’s manufactured in Toronto, not tested on animals, gentle on my hands, and comes in a variety of neat scents (as well as a scentless option) and I’m a happy camper!


  • Eucalan


Eucalan follows the same procedure as Soak, in that you simply soak your garments in the soapy water for 15 minutes, remove, and leave to dry. As with Soak, I found that I also wanted to scrub dirtier areas of my undergarments when using Eucalan, but that the results were just fine without scrubbing on items that weren’t in dire need of a wash. Eucalan is also a Canadian company with a biodegradable formula, does not test on animals, and comes in a variety of nice scents as well as a scentless option, so it’s difficult to really find a noteworthy difference in quality between it and Soak! The main difference in practice is that Eucalan’s scents are earthier, whereas Soak’s seem to smell a bit more artificial. It’s kind of like Soak is candy, whereas Eucalan is fruit. I don’t actually have a preference for either, and would happily switch between both products depending on what kind of scent I felt like using. Eucalan is also very gentle on my hands, so it gets a big check mark there. I’ve personally owned the Lavender scent and enjoyed using it!


All three of these gentle detergents are great, but I’m pretty gung-ho about the Soak/Eucalan procedure, so I’m not sure that a traditional delicates wash will be able to compete anymore! I’m comfortable stating it cuts my wash time in half at the least. That means more time to hang out with my cat, play games, or otherwise laze around and look at lingerie on the Internet.