discussing the different between powder vs. liquid laundry detergent

Powder vs. Liquid Laundry Detergent : Is There a Difference?

Especially for busy parents without much free time, doing laundry multiple times a week can be a real hassle. That said, you want to ensure your clothing gets as clean and fresh as possible every time you do a load of laundry. Part of this process is ensuring you have the right tools for the job – like deciding between powder vs. liquid laundry detergent.

While liquid detergent and powder detergent can be extremely effective in removing stains and odors, there are slight differences. To help you better understand which type of detergent is best for your needs, Charlie’s Soap put together this brief guide.

Powder vs. Liquid Laundry Detergent

Both liquid detergent and powder detergent have their benefits and drawbacks. Some people swear liquid detergent works better, while others prefer powder detergent.

Whether you have a front-load or top-load washer, both types of detergents will do a great job when used correctly. In fact, Charlie’s Soap Laundry Liquid and Laundry Powder Detergents are proven to work equally as efficiently in most everyday situations. 

Benefits of Liquid Detergent

Many people feel that liquid detergent is more convenient to use because it’s easier to pour into the washing machine. If you’ve ever accidentally spilled powder detergent on the ground, you can see why liquid detergent might be preferable.

Some people prefer liquid detergent because they don’t like the cardboard boxes that most powdered laundry detergents are sold in. To this end, cardboard boxes are known to rip easily and can get soggy when wet – which can ruin a whole batch of detergent. Luckily, you don’t have to be concerned about these issues if you use a powder detergent like Charlie’s Soap that comes in a handy, re-sealable bag that’s constructed with partially recycled plastic.

Benefits of Powder Detergent

On the other hand, some people feel that liquid detergent is messier than powder detergent. If you don’t screw the cap back on perfectly, detergent can leak out. If you’re traveling in an unstable environment like an RV, chances are that liquid detergent will spill at some point. If you’re traveling by air, remember that powder detergent is even TSA friendly

Another important fact to consider is that powder detergent is often more affordable than liquid detergent. Because powder laundry detergent doesn’t contain any water, it is far cheaper to ship because it is lighter. As a result, it can be sold for less.

Last, Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder happens to perform very well in hard water environments. While we do sell a laundry booster for hard water, many of our customers find that the extra washing soda present in our powdered detergent helps their clothes get super clean in hard water situations. 


When debating powder vs. liquid laundry detergent, you have to consider water temperature. Liquid detergents and powder detergents behave a bit differently in cold and hot water.

Liquid laundry detergent will dissolve at any water temperature. However, using too much of certain liquid detergent brands might leave blue globs or spots on your clothing (but not Charlie’s Natural Laundry Liquid Detergent – it’s clear!). 

Powder detergent is designed to dissolve quickly, yet it doesn’t always dissolve entirely in extremely cold water. If you live in a cold climate, you might want to reconsider washing your clothes in a cold setting in the dead of winter. In normal circumstances, both liquid detergent and powder detergent perform well. However, you might want to reconsider using powder detergent if your pipes get cold in the wintertime.


One of the reasons that liquid detergent stands out is that it can be used to pre-treat tough stains.

If you don’t have a pre-treatment on hand, liquid detergent can pre-treat water-based stains like coffee, tea, wine, soft drinks, fruit juice, and washable ink. While spot-treat with powder is possible, it’s less convenient as you must first mix the powder with water to form a paste to apply to the stain.

Depending on the types of stains you’re dealing with, liquid detergent can be a bit more convenient for stain removal.


When it comes to overall cleaning power, the deciding factor is the quality of the ingredients found in each type of detergent. Therefore, it doesn’t really matter if you are using a liquid or powder, as long as you get the amount of detergent right.

Unfortunately, most brands use a long list of additives you can barely pronounce in both their liquid and powder detergents. Not to mention, many of these detergent brands use harsh chemicals like bleach, whiteners, and fabric softener. These types of chemicals can eventually build up in your washer.

Laundry detergent companies generally make liquid and powder detergents that contain a combination of enzymes, surfactants, and other cleaning agents. When used together, these components lift dirt away from fabrics and suspend them in water.

Certain detergent brands use sodium carbonate – a natural cleaning agent that works well on most types of fabrics and stains. Finally, ethoxylated alcohol is a type of surfactant that helps whisk dirt out of the clothes and down the drain with the wash load water. Charlie’s Soap surfactants are biodegradable, free of impurities, and safer for the environment. 

To find a quality and high-efficiency laundry detergent, be sure it contains the right balance of the above ingredients. For example, Charlie’s Soap Natural Detergent gets your clothes clean every time, while using a minimum of ingredients.

SUMMARY: Powder vs. liquid laundry detergent

Still debating powder vs. liquid laundry detergent? There is no right or wrong answer to this question. In the end, you should use whatever type of laundry detergent is easier and most convenient for you.

When used correctly, you can get stellar results from either liquid or powder laundry detergent. Even more, using a quality brand like Charlie’s Soap that is eco-friendly, dye-free, and septic system safe is always a sure bet.


Have additional questions about powder vs. liquid laundry detergent? Contact us and we would be happy to discuss laundry tips with you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.