Update May 2022—I’ve added a few uses to both the Sal Suds and Castile Cheat Sheets. Plus: All four Cheat Sheets are now available in Spanish! (See the side bar to download or print.)
There is a lot of overlap here with the Castile Soap Dilutions Cheat Sheet because the products can often be interchanged. It is largely a matter of personal preference, but the Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner is more clean-rinsing in hard water situations, and is slightly more effective on grease and tough stains. As with the Castile soaps, these recommended dilutions are not set in stone. You may have dirtier stuff, larger sinks, a larger washer, etc., and may need to tweak these amounts to your own situation.
Sal Suds, Sal Suds, how do I love thee?
I use it for…
Clothes, towels & sheets
Tile & bamboo floors
Granite, quartz, marble, tile
Painted walls & shelves
Plastic trash cans
Stainless steel water bottles
Brita water filter pitcher
Exterior of small kitchen appliances
Stainless steel appliances
Rubber oven mitts
Wood, bamboo & plastic cutting boards
Dog & cat bowls, carriers & collars
Cars, inside and out
Finished, sealed, or painted wood
My grill (aka bar-b-que)
Outdoor metal & plastic furniture
Plastic storage bins
Toothbrushes & brush holder
Porcelain bathroom fixtures—toilet, tub, sink, handles, faucets
Plastic light switches & covers
Diaper changing pads
Silicone parts of my breast pump
My plastic nasal irrigator
Nylon camping tents
Beach balls, rafts & pool toys
Fruits & veggies
Trumpets, saxophones & trombones
All this to say, I use Sal Suds A LOT! In fact, it might be more efficient to list what I don’t wash with it. The long and short of it is, if it’s not on this list, then I probably didn’t think of it. Sal Suds is safe for any surface or material that can get wet (but it’s not meant for people or animals—it can be drying). However, if you have something that’s iffy, do a spot test.
Dishes (Handwashing): 1/2 – 1 1/2 tsp. (2.5 mL) Sal Suds in a large sink of water. Or 1 drop Sal Suds for one pot, more if needed.
- So I don’t use too much, I keep a bottle of diluted Sal Suds by my sink: 1/2 c. (120 mL) of Sal Suds in a quart (1 L) of water. A small squirt in a pot or a larger squirt for a sink.
- With All-Purpose Spray: Using a Sal Suds Spray to Clean Dishes
Laundry: 2-3 Tbsp. (30-45 mL) for a large load in a top loading washer. Optional: For extra whitening/brightening, add ½ c. (120 mL) baking soda to wash cycle and/or 1 c. (240 mL) vinegar to rinse cycle. Halve these amounts for HE washers.
Pretreating Laundry Stains: Pre-measure Sal Suds for load. Apply some or all directly to stain(s). Let sit 30 minutes or more. Add remaining Sal Suds to washer. For broad stain, spray with a solution of half Sal Suds/half water.
Handwashing Delicates: 1/2 capful (1/2 Tbsp. or 7.5 mL) Sal Suds in about 1 gallon (4 L) of water. Swish gently. Let soak 10 minutes. Swish again. Rinse with clean water. Gently press out excess water with a towel. Hang clothing or lay flat to dry.
Mopping (Wood, Laminate, Vinyl, Stone & Tile): ½ Tbsp. (7.5 mL) Sal Suds in approximately 3 gallons (12 L) of hot water. 20 drops tea tree oil (optional). Dunk mop (microfiber, preferably) and wring thoroughly. On wood and laminate, avoid excess water and mop up wet areas.
- For smaller areas, add 1/8 tsp. (.6 mL) Sal Suds to a quart (1 L) of water in a squirt bottle.
- Mopping Floors with Sal Suds
All-Purpose Cleaning Spray: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) Sal Suds in a quart (1 L) of water. Hint: Put water in the bottle first. Spray and wipe with a damp cloth. Optional: Add 1/4 tsp. (1.25 mL) tea tree essential oil. Use on any surface that is safe in contact with water.
- Tips to make & use: GIY (Green It Yourself) All-Purpose Cleaning Spray
- Countertops & Tile: Spray and wipe with a damp cloth.
Cleaning Stone with Castile Soap and Sal Suds
- Microsuede: Spray and scrub with a gentle circular motion.
- Wood: Painted or Sealed (not waxed)—Spray and wipe with a microfiber cloth.
Wood: Making It Shine
Window Wash: (aka Sal Suds Lite) ½ tsp. (2.5 mL) in a quart (1 L) of water. Spray and squeegee. Follow with a spray of pure club soda, or half vinegar/half water, and squeegee.
Stainless Steel Appliances & Sink: Spray appliance with All-Purpose Spray. Wipe with a soft damp cloth in the direction of the grain. Spray sink and sprinkle with baking soda from a shaker. Scrub then rinse.
- Appliances: Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances with Dr. Bronner’s
- Sink: Cleaning A Stainless Steel Sink
Toilets: For best results, empty toilet. Spray bowl thoroughly with All-Purpose Spray, or sprinkle 2-3 drops of Sal Suds directly on toilet brush. Sprinkle baking soda on a brush, scrub bowl. Let sit 10 minutes. Turn water on. Flush.
Fruit & Veggie Wash: 1 drop of Sal Suds in a bowl of water. Dunk and swish the produce. Rinse in clear water.
Oral Appliances & CPAPs: Removable retainers, nightguards, etc. & dentures: Wet device. Add 1-2 drops of soap to a soft toothbrush. Brush gently, then rinse. CPAP mask, tubing, and headgear: Submerge in a warm water with a small squirt. Allow to sit 30 minutes, then wash, rinse, and towel dry. Allow to air dry thoroughly before reassembling.
Pressure Washer/Carpet Cleaner: In cleaning solution chamber, fill with water and add 1 drop of Sal Suds. Add 1 c. (240 mL) vinegar to rinse water (optional). Use All-Purpose Spray on carpet spots (use sparingly).
Cars: ½ Tbsp. (7.g mL) Sal Suds in 3 gallons (12 L) of water for exterior. Use All-Purpose Spray on interior surfaces and leather seats. Wipe with damp cloth.
- Exterior: Car Washing with Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds
- Interior: Green Cleaning Car Interiors with Dr. Bronner’s
Patio Furniture: 1/2 Tbsp. (7.5 mL) Sal Suds in a bucket of warm water. Wash with sponge, microfiber cloth or stiff brush. Wipe with damp cloth.
Not sure when to use Sal Suds or when to use Castile Soap? Head over to my blog post, Sal Suds or Castile Soap—Which to Use?
If you have SLS concerns, check out this blog post: There is no Cancer Risk from SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)