Thanks to the black magic known as data based marketing, my social media feeds are plump with ads for “eco-friendly” products. Apparently, the data-deities have determined that I need Tru Earth Eco-strips laundry detergent and showed me ad after ad for this product. Who am I to resist this calling?
I finally broke down and bought a 32-pack. NOT because Facebook told me to, but to see if this eco-friendly laundry option lived up to expectations.
Do they work?
The short answer is yes. A 32-pack of Tru Earth strips cost $17 with free shipping and arrived at my house exactly two weeks after online purchase. As advertised, the packaging is minimal – just a recyclable cardboard envelop with a packaging label. Much easier to handle than a giant jug of laundry detergent.
As usual, I had a full hamper of dirty clothes complete with a muddy pair of khakis to test this product’s cleaning power. In compliance with the directions, I put one strip into the washer, put a full load of clothes on top and let ‘er rip! (The package does suggest using two strips for heavily soiled laundry or half a strip for small loads. I like to live dangerously, so I used one.)
To be honest, I doubted a 2″ x 4″ strip that weighs under 3 grams (according to Tru Earth) would get the job done. But a half hour later I was pleasantly surprised to find a fresh smelling, clean load of laundry in my washer. Better still, my khakis were mud-free and ready to fight another day. The “Fresh Linen” scent even passed my wife’s smell test.
Who knew laundry could be so exciting?
Are they Earth-friendly?
Tru Earth is based in Vancouver, Canada, and gets its eco-friendly stamp largely for its efficient packaging. The brand claims that 400 loads-worth of strips take the same space as a 100-load jug of detergent. A 3-gram strip weighs 94% less than the 40 grams of detergent needed for a single load. With regard to the environment, Tru Earth’s efficiency translates into less plastic and less carbon emissions from transport.
*Note: Tru Earth had been using soft plastic packaging for certain products, but switched completely to compostable cardboard (shown below) as of October 30, 2019.*
According to Tru Earth, if everyone switched from detergent to Eco-Strips, we would:
- Eliminate one billion plastic jugs and save 700 million from landfills.
- Reduce trucking emissions equivalent to taking 27 million cars per day, or planting nine million trees.
I don’t know how they reached these numbers or whether they are accurate, but there’s no question Tru Earth strips are much more efficient to package and transport than jugs of liquid detergent.
In terms of ingredients, Tru Earth claims to be vegan – but I haven’t found a meaningful cruelty-free certification like Leaping Bunny or Beauty Without Bunnies to back it up. However, its parent company, Dizolve, made the following statement:
“Dizolve laundry detergent is a vegan product: no animal-derived ingredients are used in it, and no testing on animals has been conducted by us or our ingredient suppliers. We voluntarily publish our ingredients list and MSDS as part of our commitments to transparency and sustainability.”
Dizolve distributes to Australia, Canada (under the brands Tru Earth and DSolve, which distribute to the United States), the Middle East, Russia and Ukraine.
Tru Earth strips are paraben-free, phosphate-free, dye-free, chlorine bleach free, certified hypoallergenic (by an “independent dermatologist”) and readily biodegradable in accordance with OECD 310D.
The products full ingredients, along with a Material Safety Data Sheet, can be found here. Many of the ingredients are listed as plant-based or plant-derived.
The bottom line
I think Dizolve and Tru Earth are on to something here. At this point, their products aren’t available in-store in the United States, but can be ordered online and shipped in the mail. This actually works in their favor, because it eliminates the emissions needed to ship to a middle-man retailer.
The only complaints I see in the reviews are about Tru Earth’s subscription service. It seems online ordering defaults to a monthly subscription, while many first time users would prefer a trial pack.
To avoid a subscription, use the blue “Add to Cart” button instead of the green “Yes, I want to Save” button on the sales page.
I’m deeming Tru Earth “Emeraldology Approved” and would love to see this product catch on.