Can I Use Shampoo As Laundry Detergent?

Can I Use Shampoo As Laundry Detergent
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Shampoo can be used as a laundry detergent. However, this should become something other than a habit of washing clothes like this, and you should skip using shampoo in a washing machine. Only while washing by hand should shampoo be used.

Shampoos are made with a surfactant intended to clean hair, and detergents are made with chemicals for washing dishes, clothes, or other surfaces.

Laundry Detergent

Laundry detergents are a popular option and are mainly used for removing stains and specks of dirt from clothes and fabrics; eco-friendly packages, available in recyclable, etc.

It is manufactured in two ways, one in powder form and the other in liquid form.

They are made up of surfactants, the essential ingredient and the cause of having an amphipathic. It’s very effective. The chemical formula of detergent is –  [C 18 H 29 NaO 3 S].

Important Chemical In Detergents 

The main and most essential chemicals used in laundry detergents are-

  • sodium silicate
  • various phosphates
  • sodium carbonate
  • sodium perborate

Five Types Of Laundry Detergents

The most common and available types of detergents are-

  • DIY
  • LiquidConventional 
  • Non-Toxic 
  • Powder 

Five Laundry Processes 

Mainly laundry processes include, are-

  • Washing
  • Agitation
  • Rinsing
  • Drying
  • Ironing
  • Folding.

Elements Of Laundry Detergent

  • Water
  • Plant-based cleaning agent
  • Sodium Citrate
  • Essential Oil
  • Vinegar.
  • C12-16 Pareth
  • Sodium C10-16 Alkylbenzene-sulfonate
  • Citric Acid. 
  • Propylene Glycol


The shampoo is mainly used to remove dirt and oil from the scalp of the hair, and some specially featured shampoos may also have additional components to control dandruff and lice. 

It ensures hair growth by strengthening, reducing breakage, cleaning the scalp, and helping to make it smooth for combing by improving hair manageability.

As it eliminates excess oils, it’s basic hygiene for hair.

A few essential and common primary detergents used in shampoos are ammonium lauryl sulfate, sodium lauryl ether sulfate, and sodium lauryl sulfate.

Types Of Shampoos

The main characteristics of shampoo are to clean away the dirt and leave your hair shiny, flexible, and manageable.

There are several kinds of shampoos used by ladies for specific purposes. Different types of shampoos are mentioned below, are-

  • Regular shampoo.
  • Anti-Dandruff shampoo
  • Clarifying shampoo
  • Moisturizing shampoo
  • Volumizing shampoo
  • Anti-breakage shampoo
  • Purifying shampoo
  • Dry shampoo

Classification Of  Shampoo

Shampoo has been classified into many ways, they are-

  • aerosol foam shampoo
  • liquid herbal shampoo
  •  liquid shampoo
  • lotion shampoo
  • solid gel shampoo
  • solid cream shampoo and 
  • powder shampoo.

The Benefits Of Washing Clothes Using Shampoo

Cleanser can be utilized as a clothing cleanser to clean garments. It works well to remove stains, oils, and dirt from fabrics. Shampoo works well as a laundry detergent for the following reasons:

  • The first benefit is that shampoo is affordable. Typically, a bottle of shampoo costs less than a laundry detergent bottle.
  • It is biodegradable, making it suitable for the environment. It’s fully environmentally friendly and safely down the drain.
  • Shampoo is made to remove dirt and oils from hair, and it can also remove dirt and oils from clothes, making them need to be cleaned.
  • Compared to conventional detergents for washing clothes, shampoo is gentler on you. 

The Disadvantages Of Washing Clothes Using Shampoo

It’s not hidden that shampoo is a powerful detergent for hair, but it also has some disadvantages when used as a laundry detergent.

Some harmful effects of using shampoo as a laundry detergent-

  • Using shampoo as a laundry detergent can cause clothes to fade quickly, making them feel stiff and grittier.
  • The negative aspect of using shampoo is washing clothes with it; while it is common knowledge that shampoo is a powerful detergent, it’s used as a laundry detergent.
  • Hot water should not be added to the shampoo. Doing so may result in the shrinkage or discoloration of fabrics.
  • Cleanser can leave a foamy buildup on your garments, making them draw in soil and residue. 

How To Hand Wash Your Clothes Using Shampoo

Hand washing your clothes is way easier than you think. The step-by-step guide on how to hand-wash clothes using shampoo is mentioned below-

Materials Needed

  • A bucket, basin, container, sink, or tub
  • Soft brush
  • Shampoo
  • Clothesline


  • Fill a bucket, container, sink, or tub with warm water that can cover clothes.
  • Add shampoo to the water to form suds and bubbles.
  • Add clothes into the water and keep swishing to cover the entire clothes with suds.
  • Allow the clothes to soak for at least 20 minutes to let stains break down.
  • Gently rub the dirtiest parts with a hand or soft brush.
  • Then rinse the clothes with clean water and ensure that it removes all of the soap residues on the clothes.
  • Gently squeeze out excess water from clothes.
  • At last, hang the clothes on a clothesline into the air to dry.

How To Wash Clothes In The Washing Machine By Using Shampoo

Shampoo shouldn’t be put into a washing machine cause there’s a chance of creating suds and bubbles to pour out of the washer. Wash the garments by hand in the sink with shampoo and water.

Shampoo is much cheaper than most laundry detergents and can be used to remove dirt and other stains from a washing machine. The steps to wash your clothes using shampoo in a washing machine are mentioned below-  

Materials Needed

  • Washing machine
  • Shampoo
  • Clothesline 
  • Dryer


  • Pour shampoo into the drum of the machine. If the machine has a bleach dispenser, then add a small amount of shampoo to the dispenser.
  • Add clothes to the machine and run the machine on the longest wash cycle possible so the shampoo can work like magic.
  • Then stop the machine and allow it to soak for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse the clothes and gently squeeze out any extra water from the clothes.
  • At last, dry them using a dryer.


Q.1. Is Shampoo The Same As Laundry Detergent?

No, they are not because both are fully different, and the usage purpose is not similar. The shampoo is mainly intended for cleaning the hair; conversely, detergents are made with various chemicals and specified for use while washing clothes. 

Q.2. Is Shampoo Acidic Or Basic?

 The main ingredient of shampoo is citric acid which has a pH value that falls as acidic. Thus, It is considered to be ‘acidic.’

Q.3. Is Laundry Detergent An Acid Or Base?

The main ingredient of detergent is surfactants and enzymes. Thus, it is considered ‘basic’ rather than ‘acidic.’

Q.4. What Happens If You Wash Clothes With Shampoo?

The shampoo is mainly used in hair to make it dirt free and smooth. So if we use it while washing clothes, it will cause bubbles and create lots of suds out of the washer. 

Concluding The Fact

In conclusion, we can say that the statement “Can I Use Shampoo As Laundry Detergent” has a mixed answer. There is no problem if we use shampoo as a substitute for laundry detergent, but generally, it won’t be a good decision as the usage is different. But this shouldn’t turn into a habit, cause cleaning clothes by using shampoo has many advantages and disadvantages too.

Therefore, shampoo may be outside the category of best laundry detergent,  yet it’s an affordable and eco-friendly alternative. If someone is looking for savings and helping the environment from pollution, shampoo is a good option to wash. 

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