Washing with laundry balls and soap nuts isn’t new but these detergent-free methods continue to have a loyal following so we decided to take a closer look at how well these products perform. We put 4 laundry balls and soap nuts to the test against 10 common stains.

Our test

For our test we used a front loader on a cold wash cycle. We followed each manufacturer’s recommendations for the number of laundry balls and amount of soap nuts for our 3.5kg test load. We also ran a wash cycle using only water and another using the recommended dose of Persil front-loader powder – one of the top performers in our laundry detergents test.

The results

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Wacky claims

One of the laundry balls in our test – the Miracle II Laundry Ball – is filled with “Miracle II soap and neutraliser” rather than pellets.

Miracle II Laundry Ball
Miracle II Laundry Ball

The small rubber ball with “209 rounded spikes” is sealed so none of the soap or neutraliser is released during a wash cycle, but its manufacturer claims it “emits a strong negative-ion field and breaks up water molecules so they can reach further into fabric and clean better”.

The manufacturer also suggests soiled or stained clothes may require pre-treatment and the addition of extra “Miracle II soap”. We only used the laundry ball in our test.

At $119 for a single ball, you’d expect it to work miracles. Become a paying Consumer member or log in to find out how it rated.