Advice on detergents for whites and colours - what's best?

I'm not sure if this thread is served best in this category as it's not really about saving money although that would be nice but more about advice on washing clothes.

I've always used Aerial Original Gel because it still comes out top in the Which? Best Buy.

That said, I'm becoming more aware of reducing the fading of coloured laundry and increasing the whiteness of white laundry.

Does anyone have any strong beliefs in how to maximise these objectives?

Again and according to Which? Ecover Laundry Detergent has got 5 stars for protecting colours while my Aerial Original Gel gets a still respectable 4 stars. I wonder if this is all just negligible or you've actually seen a difference between detergents. I've noticed that Ecover Laundry Detergent do a colour specific detergent too so that must be even better.

Then there's the whites, Which? say that powdered detergent is usually better at keeping white laundry whiter and their recommendation is Aldi's Almat Bio Washing Powder which is much cheaper than the branded ones.

So, in short, is it better and worth it to use different detergents and their forms (gel and powder) for colours and whites or do you find all this negligible where there's little difference when just using one for all?


So far it would seem Almat Bio Washing Powder is the best option for whites and Ecover Colour Laundry Detergent for colours.

Please let me know what you monthly big shop is coming up!

Thanks very much.


  • Emmia
    Emmia Posts: 2,925
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    edited 5 November 2023 at 9:54AM
    For white cottons, especially towels, I find some napisan in the wash helps to keep things white. For colours I try to wash reds with reds, blues with blues etc. and use those colour catcher sheets.

    I use persil liquid or tabs, I've had a bad reaction in the past to some detergents, and although not the cheapest I'm wary of changing as a result.
  • wort
    wort Posts: 1,630
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    I use Almat from Aldi bio and non bio . Works well for everything. The main reason colours fade is too hot a wash. I turn dark trousers and jeans inside out. And keep whites separate .
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
  • Spint
    Spint Posts: 49
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    wort said:
    I use Almat from Aldi bio and non bio . Works well for everything. The main reason colours fade is too hot a wash. I turn dark trousers and jeans inside out. And keep whites separate .

    Ah yes, good point. I always stick my machine on 40. Perhaps I should start using 30 instead. That said Ecover Colour Laundry Detergent states 20 can be used. The lower the better I guess as long as it doesn't affect the actual washing of the laundry too much. My laundry is only ever lightly soiled such as washing towels once a week and wearing garments a couple of times.

    Thanks again.

  • MrsStepford
    MrsStepford Posts: 1,481
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    edited 5 November 2023 at 9:26PM
    For getting stuff clean generally, we use Persil Hygiene Professional Bio powder which will kill 99.9% of bacteria at 40C plus e.coli, MRSA, etc etc. It's often used by care homes to clean patient clothes and bedding.

     This washing powder includes two anti-fungal chemicals, but as we buy quite a bit of clothing from charity shops (shirts, trousers, shorts, skirts, leggings, t-shirts) we will also add in Eradicil occasionally. 

    We use Vanish as a prewash, but recently discovered Sodasan, a non-chlorine bleach, which is amazing on whites that seem beyond help. 

    Haven't needed to use anything other than Vanish for coloured clothes. Suggest lowering temperature and washing colours together. 

    If no-one in your household has problems with pollen, drying whites in sunshine will get rid of yellowing from sweat.
  • I use Fairy tablets for colours and Fairy washing powder for whites.
  • I put a couple of tablespoons of washing soda in with less detergent.  Makes a very good job of bringing up whites and colours.  I am using Fairy non-bio at the moment, but once that has been used up, then I will switch to laundry sheets.  I have tried those produced by the Green Company, but I know that others have since been launched.  It takes a lot less room in the cupboard!

    I still wash sheets and underwear at 40C and towels at 60c, though.  I concentrate on making sure that the washing machine is full before I switch it on.
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