Are you doing it the ‘green’ way?
Do you clean your laundry with natural products?
Then Kudos to you!
But are they bottled in plastic?…
As our world becomes increasingly aware of the omnipresence of toxins in our daily lives as well as in the unwanted bounty of plastic packaging, the desire for renewable and eco-friendly alternatives are growing. In recent years the Indian soapberry or washnut gained popularity. These trees are native to the Himalaya region and parts of southern China. People native to those areas have used them for thousands of years as a laundry detergent since it is a source of saponin, a natural surfactant which cleans and freshens our clothes.
Could Mother Earth have possibly provided the central European continent with a similar product, also containing saponins naturally?
Have you heard of washing your clothes with chestnuts?
Yes, ordinary chestnuts, not even the ‘special’ ones we use for cooking and baking which can be bought in reform stores and supermarkets.
How to use them?
It is incredibly simple. Collect them in season, plenty can be found in forests all across Austria and in many other parts of the world. It’s recommended to dry them so that they stay unspoiled throughout the year.
- Put them in a box and place it on a radiator or in the sun for a day or two. For one wash cycle, you need between 5 to 8 chestnuts, depending on their size. You can either chop them up into small pieces before the drying process, as they will be softer or use a mortar and pestle to crush them whenever you want. Put the pieces into a large glass and add 300 ml of water to soak and stir occasionally.
- Let this mixture sit for about 6 to 8 hours.
- Take a kitchen sieve and pour the liquid into the drawer of your washing machine where you would normally pour your commercial laundry detergent.
Voilà! Clean laundry by a detergent that is 100% organic and zero waste!