This DIY doesn’t have sodium lauryl sulfate (or any sulfates) in it, so it doesn’t foam up like conventional dish soaps do. But I’m okay with that, because it still gets the job done. I got the mason jar dispenser at Home Goods (I squealed when I saw it, no joke). To use it, I just pump some soap onto my wooden scrubber (more on my dish washing tools later on). Whenever we run low on this dish soap, it’s super easy to just refill the mason jar dispenser – we just unscrew the cap and add the ingredients (as you’ll see below). I love how easy it is, and honestly, its saved my parents a lot of money. If you buy all the ingredients in bulk, you won’t have to buy anything else for a long, long time. Especially not icky conventional dish soap. Also, for those who aren’t into DIYs, I have an option for you as well! Just scroll down to the bottom of this post to learn more. Now without further ado, here’s how to make some zero waste dish soap!
- First, fill your jar dispenser with the castile soap. I use Dr. Bronner’s – I got a big container at my local Trader Joe’s for ~$11. Unfortunately, I have no bulk options for wet products like soap, shampoo, etc. so I try to buy the biggest container I can find (the bigger it is the longer it lasts and the less plastic I have to recycle).
- Next, dilute the castile soap with the water. Add the baking soda, then close the jar dispenser and give it a good shake. Your dish soap is ready to use!
But….what about the folks who don’t have time to make DIY dish soap? Or, what about those plastic sponges – what do you use in their place?
I’m happy to say there’s a solution for both those problems.
Not into DIYs? Try the Dish Washing Block.
I get the fact not everyone has time for DIYs. And that’s totally okay! If you don’t, I highly recommend this amazing Dish Washing Block that’s both vegan and zero waste. It’s absolutely fantastic for busting through grime and grease.
I know what you’re thinking: “But how do I use it? Isn’t dish soap supposed to be liquid?”
Technically, there’s no law saying it has to be. In fact, back when my father was growing up, he said my grandmother used to use a dish washing block all the time. Liquid dish soap didn’t become a thing until recently – mind blow, am I right?
I personally love using this wooden dish brush and this dish scrubber. The wooden dish brush has a long handle and a detachable head you can replace and compost at the end of its life. The wooden scrubber is completely compostable and designed to fit easily in your hand. Both work fantastic with the Dish Washing Block – no plastic sponges needed.
The block is just 7.5 oz – about the size of my hand – but still packs a powerful punch. Also, if you hate a cluttered counter, let me tell you – this Dish Washing Block will certainly not take up much space at all.
Best yet, it can last you up to six months’ worth of dishes, if only one person uses it. That replaces up to three bottles worth of liquid soap…might impressive if you ask me.
Here’s more information about each of these handy dandy dish washing products:
Dish Washing Block
This handmade Dish Washing Block is so darn versatile and a game changer. It was designed and created by a mother and daughter team which makes it even more special. It’s completely vegan, cruelty-free fragrance-free, and made with no dyes, parabens or phosphates. I love using it on my dishes!
To use: Just rub a wet sponge, scrubber or wooden dish brush on this dish block until it lathers. Then use the suds to wash your dishes! Store on a soap dish or rack.
Ingredients: Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (plant derived) Decyl Glucoside (plant derived) Sodium Cocoate (plant derived) Quillaja Saponaria (from the South American soap bark tree – organic) Glycerin (plant derived) Aloe Vera Leaf (organic) Purified Water Sodium Carbonate (mineral derived).
Pro tip: Use the same dish washing block suds to clean off carpet stains, kitchen counters, sinks, and more! It’s multi-purpose which is amazing.
Wooden dish brush
I love washing the dishes thanks to this wooden dish brush. This bad boy makes dish washing so easy because of its long handle – no more sticking my hand into mason jars to try to clean the inside! This baby does the hard work for me and leaves my hands soak-free.
To use: This is great for scrubbing your pots, pans, and dishes clean. You can even use it to clean sinks and other items – like glass mason jars. Just get the head piece wet, scrub it against the Dish Washing Block until it lathers, then scrub away on the item that needs to be cleaned.
Materials: The handle is made of sustainable wood and the bristles are made of sisal, a Mexican plant agave with large fleshy leaves. Once worn out, you can compost the wooden head and sisal bristles. All metal staples can be recycled.
Pro tip: To prevent cracks, don’t leave the wooden part soaking in water. After use be sure to rinse off the sisal bristle with clean water and let it hang dry naturally. This will prolong its life!
I love this little dish scrubber. It makes scrubbing the dishes a breeze! Best of all, it’s fantastic for scrubbing stubborn grime off pans and pots.
To use: Lather up on the Dish Washing Block and then scrub away! I recommend using this mostly on pots and pans with hard to remove grime (ex: stuck on egg, burnt bits, etc). It’ll let you really scrub and get in there nicely. However, you can also use this on all other dishes too!
Materials: The handle is made from natural beechwood and the bristles are made of union fibers, derived from hard Mexican plant fiber. You can compost the entire scrubber when it’s at the end of its life.
Pro tip: You can also use this scrubber to clean any area of your home – not just dishes! I recommend using it to clean the bath tub, or scrub grime off of tiles. It’s fantastic for that.
There’s literally something for everyone. If you prefer DIYs, definitely make my zero waste dish soap. If you don’t have time for it, I recommend investing in the Dish Washing Block. Either way, you’ll never need to purchase a plastic bottle of dish soap again!
Would you try making this zero waste dish soap? Or perhaps you prefer the Dish Washing Block? Check out my cleaning page for more zero waste cleaning ideas.
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