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What Works And What Doesn’t – Blue and Hazel

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We’ve been using Dropps laundry detergent pods, oxi-booster pods, fabric softener pods, and dishwashing detergent pods for over a year now. It’s been the most hassle free safe swap in our home, and I want to share my review of Dropps Pods if you are thinking of making the switch!

You should know I am a fan of most but not all of their products, and that I switched when trying to find safer products for my family.

Please note, I have ordered and reordered these pods and this post is not sponsored.

While I would never do a sponsored post for products I dislike, I wanted the freedom to show you the good and the bad and compare to other brands. Sponsored posts don’t usually allow mentioning other competitive brands. So enjoy!

Blue and Hazel site is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites

3 cardboard boxes of Dropps detergent pods delivered in the mail with packaging that says

Why I started using Dropps pods for laundry and dishes

Little by little I’ve been switching the products I use to clean our home. Since skin can absorb harmful chemicals, laundry detergent seemed like an important safer swap since it touches my family’s skin every day.

In addition to Dropps, we also now use Branch Basics concentrate for all our cleaning sprays, and I am soon to try out a few Norwex cloths as well.

It’s a change in the way I think about chemicals being absorbed through the skin.

I love that Dropps pods have no dyes and have a few unscented options. My family doesn’t seem to be bothered by scents on the skin, so I opted to buy the scented versions, which are 100% scented using essential oils.

I feel better knowing what’s on my skin is less toxic, and that there’s zero plastic involved.

What I used before switching to Dropps

Prior to Dropps, I used All Free & Clear pods for the laundry with Oxi Clean powder on occasion, and Cascade pods for our dishwasher.

Honestly, they worked great, and we had no skin reactions. I was simply looking for safer products with less chemical toxins.

We don’t have skin allergies in our home, but I’ve always preferred unscented laundry detergent as I’m skeptical about added fragrance chemicals.

They don’t need to be disclosed in the US and therefor can’t be studied or tested for safety.

Dropps actually uses essential oils as fragrance in their scented varieties, so there’s no mystery item there.

Dropps laundry and dish pods stored inside plastic containers from the dollar store.

More posts you may love:

Save 15% off your Dropps order with the code DROPPS15

Reasons why I’m a Dropps laundry detergent convert

I found a Groupon for $100 worth of Dropps pods for $45, so it was the perfect time to give them a try! So glad I did. I was on the fence about them and getting a discount helped me to give them a try.

If you’re thinking, “get me some pods already!” click here to get 15% off your order (on top of 30% off a subscription). Just type in DROPPS15 in the coupon code area at checkout.

Why I’m still using Dropps almost 2 years later:

  • They work! Dropps clean my clothes & dishes.
  • Less packaging/no single use plastics
  • Safer Ingredients/Better EWG rating
  • Inexpensive (save 20% with subscribe and save, plus choose from 3 sizes of each product. The bigger the box, the less you pay per pod)
  • Gentle on the skin, and they even have options for sensitive skin and babies.

Why I was skeptical to use Dropps pods

There are a few reasons I was skeptical of Dropps.

First off, marketing is not everything. Ya, it’s great that these waste less plastic by shipping the pods in a cardboard box, but did they actually clean clothes and dishes?

Secondly, would these stick together and be a waste of money? They are not in an airtight container and I live in the south where it gets humid.

Thirdly, Dropps pods are way smaller than my old Cascade dishwashing pods, and Dropps launry detergent pods are smaller than my old All Free & Clear pods.

O, and the oxi boost pod is smaller than the huge scoop of Oxi Clean I used to put in. So, would they have the same cleaning power or would I need to always double up on Dropps, doubling the cost?

Ok…so I’ll get to all that. But first…here’s why I’ve switched to Dropps and haven’t looked back.

Dropps pods laundry detergent review
This is the family size unscented Dropps box.

Yes, Dropps pods clean my clothes really well

You may be wondering how could the same amount of detergent in a pod be fine for all sized loads? Especially if you’re used to filling a cup to line 1, 2, or 3…a pod seems a little imperfect.

Here’s how Dropps deals with that: I have an upright washing machine, and follow their advice to use:

  • 2 pods if I’m doing an XL load
  • 1 pod for large, medium or small loads
  • 1 mini pod for small loads.

I pretty much never do a small load with 3 kids and a husband, so skipped trying the mini pods. You’d probably be fine to just use the regular pod for small dirty loads anyway.

The Dropps dish pods are *Just OK*

Dropps dish pod next to a Cascade dish pod.
Dropps dishwasher pod size (smaller) vs Cascade (larger)

So I have a love hate relationship with these. I like them enough to have reordered them several times, but they don’t work as well as my old Cascade pods. I truly don’t understand why there are thousands of raving 5 star reviews on their website.

And, you can’t even smell the tiniest bit of lemon scent from them (which is fine but I’d love it if you could!)

Other’s say they work as well as Cascade, but I disagree. I’m hoping there will be an improved formula.

Glass doesn’t get sparkly…but it could also be my dishwasher

My disapproval with these is that is that they don’t clean my clear glasses as well as my old Cascade pods. Even with two dish pods. They just don’t.

I definitely have a LOUD and OLD dishwasher in our rental home. The kind you have to scrape plates and cups before washing and let the dishwasher do the “cleaning”. But it didn’t use to matter with Cascade.

My white dishes and silverware look great, but my clear glass isn’t “sparkly” anymore. It’s noticeable, and sometimes they look smeary and I rewash them.

Below is an example of “washed” glassware that I had to hand wash to remove the spots. This is fairly common with my clear glass, more than I’d like.

Glasses showing smudges after using Dropps dishwasher lemon scented pods.

If I could find a better “non toxic” pod I’d switch. But so far I haven’t and I’d rather not use the harsh chemicals in Cascade either. I’ll update this post if I find something better!

Why I’m sticking with Dropps dish pods even though they don’t work as well as Cascade

  • I love that here’s no overpowering chemically smell oozing from my dishwasher while it washes, dries, and is opened like when I used Cascade, or the Aldi brand dish pods. It was strong!
  • There is zero plastic with Dropps.
  • I feel safer using this with my family than Cascade.

Click here to try out the Dropps Dish Pods, and use code DROPPS15 for 15% off.

Updated review on Dropps Dish Pods (2021)

I wanted to follow up on my negative Dropps dishwashing pods review above.

I did switch over for a while to try out these eco friendly Ecover dishwashing pods (thanks to a reader’s recommendation in the comments).

The Ecover pods work really well if you’re looking for a Dropps alternative. Only downside is that they come individually wrapped in plastic that you have to toss…which is not obvious when you are ordering.

However, my Landlord replaced our old, loud, dishwasher with a new very basic model you’d expect in a rental. I decided to give Dropps pods another go to see if the dishwasher may have been the culprit?

Anyways, I’ve switched back to Dropps because they are cheaper than Ecover pods and seem to work just fine in my new dishwasher. I don’t ever rewash my glass, and they don’t seem to have the nasty water spots on them anymore.

Two things that still confuse me:

  1. If it’s the dishwasher that was the problem, why did Cascade clean my glass so well with the old dishwasher and Dropps didn’t?
  2. Was there an updated formula for Dropps lemon pods?…because my new lemon dish pods look different. Check it out for yourself below.

The upper left lemon dish pod has tiny blueish speckles…and the lower right one looks completely white without speckles. I need to contact them to ask if there was a formula change at all and I’ll update that here.

dropps dishwasher lemon scented pods

Dropps are made 100% plastic free with eco friendly packaging

Dropps claims that 68% of laundry detergent plastic containers go to landfills.

First off, you actually can recycle plastic laundry detergent jugs in most areas! You don’t even need to rinse them out.

But here’s the thing…most people just toss them, and I’ve done that plenty of times. To me, pods are a great way to skip plastic altogether.

As for the cardboard box it comes in…you can recycle that or burn it.

And as for the pod membrane, it’s made up of a water soluble film made of polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH). This dissolves in the water and is able to be broken down by microorganisms at water treatment plants and turned back into water and CO2.

Dropps vs Tide: How they compare based on EWG rating

The EWG (Environmental Working Group) does a pretty great job of helping the average Joe person to recognize toxins in products and make safer swaps.

Their easy A to F scoring covers thousands of products, rating ingredients they’ve researched.

They rate a product’s safety for the categories: asthma/respiratory, skin allergies, reproductive toxicity, cancer, and the environment.

Dropps come in with a B & C rating, depending on the product you use. See this example of the scent booster/fabric softener pod I bought.

Here’s Tide Original’s rating (F), as are all of Tide’s varieties.

Happy to say goodbye, although my hubs did sneak a bottle home as I think it reminds him of his childhood?! Or just smells lovely I guess. All Free & Clear (which was my go to) also scored an F.

EWG rating on Tide is an “F”. Bye bye Tide.

How to save money on Dropps pods

Save 15% off your Dropps order with the code DROPPS15

Drops are about 20 cents per pod. I did find a Groupon though so it was half that! My old All Free and Clear pods were less by a few cents. Here’s how I saved a lot of money on my Dropps:

Check Groupon first!! I began my dive into Dropps pods with a $100 voucher on Groupon that I bought for $45. Yessss. These come and go, so just check first.

Get Rakuten first, even before buying a Groupon! This is an easy cash back app I’ve been using for years now. I click one button on my computer that says “Activate cash back”, and then buy as usual.

With Rakuten I earned 3.5% cash back off at Dropps, and 5% off my Groupon purchase by activating my Rakuten button. In total, I’ll get about $4.50 or so back via Paypal…by clicking a button.

Then, I saved 25% by choosing the subscription option at Dropps. (Psss. This is in addition to the 15% off code using DROPPS15!)

On top of that, you can get a larger sized box to save more per pod. For example, 56 pods cost $16, 140 pods cost $32, and the 210 pod option cost $40 (which is about 20 cents/load).

Dropps subscription wash plan prices vs one time purchase.

Save money and wash your clothes in cold water

Did you know that washing your clothes in cold water decreases the energy it cost to do a load of laundry by 65-90%?! Not to mention hot water can actually set certain stains into the clothes like blood.

AND, Dropps say their products work best in cold water.

Of course there are times you’ll want to use hot water (like to sanitize those puking germs or if certain fabrics recommend warmer water on the label).

Do Dropps pods dissolve all the way or leave residue on your clothes?

Dropps pods are made to dissolve and activate in cold water.

So far, I’ve had no issues finding any part of a leftover pod in my laundry because I bought their $5 laundry pod pouch which comes with 2 pouches.

Don’t skimp on these because it will make sure you never get any residue on your clothes.

Anything that doesn’t dissolve all the way stays in the pouch, although that’s uncommon for me. After using Dropps for a year this has happened maybe 5-10 times ever.

I put the pouch containing my pods into the drum first, let the water bubble a bit, and then put clothes on top.

Dropps are gentle on the skin & have several unscented options

Just because clothes smells like perfume doesn’t mean they’re clean! I’ve always associated “clean” laundry with a scent, but that’s just not true.

And just because it’s unscented doesn’t mean it’s dirty.

My husband is a dermatologist and while he loves himself some good ‘ol’ scented laundry detergent from his childhood…(Ahem Tide which I gave away), he actually recommends unscented to his patients.

He says he likes the Dropps scents I’ve purchased, so I’m thankful for a safe way to have clothes smell fresh and amazing!

My all time favorite scent so far is the Orange Blossom. I buy unscented laundry pods and the orange blossom fabric softener. It’s light, not too strong at all, but noticeable.

How I store my Dropps pods so they are easy to grab and don’t stick together

Child safety locks on Dropps pods boxes make it extra hard for little kids to get inside.
Child safety tab helps keep out toddler hands, but I prefer to use containers to make it easier. I also don’t like that the cardboard sides rub up against the pods each time I close both layers of the box. I feel like I could pop pods this way.

The cardboard box design comes with an extra-hard-to-get-into box supposedly to help keep toddlers safer. Since I have a toddler, I love this effort!

However, I would go nuts trying to open three of these each time I do laundry. (I use a detergent pod, oxi pod, and fabric softener pod each time).

Easy solution is to get some jars and label them!

You could also reuse large nut containers (like the ones from Costco).

Dropps pods stored in 3 separate clear containers from the dollar store. One is labeled unscented, one is labeled oxi-booster, and one is labeled scented fabric softener.

Do Dropps pods stick together?

Dropps scented fabric softener pods sticking together in a cluster from moisture.

Most of my pods came how you’d expect…separate. However, just the fabric softener box had quite a few “bunches”. I would have emailed the company about it except I was able to pull them apart gently without any ripping of the casing.

Update: My second and third box of fabric softener pods had zero stuck together.

But be sure to never handle when wet, and keep them in a sealed jar or out of the garage unless it’s humidity and temperature controlled.

Where are Dropps made and do they ship to Canada?

Dropps are made in Chicago, Illinois. I love the idea of buying products made in the US, so that’s just another reason I’m happy supporting this company!

I’m sad to say as of January 2020 Dropps stopped shipping to Canada. I’ll update this if I’m aware of that changing.

What is the Dropps refund policy if I order and don’t like them?

Dropps website states that within 30 days if you are unhappy with the product, they will refund you.

However, they will deduct the original cost to ship it to you. (It’s free shipping always on their site…so not sure how much they paid to send me a 14 lb box of pods…it might deduct a lot of $$$)

They also do not require you send back the product, but ask that instead of tossing it that you would gift to someone or donate to a family in need or a shelter. That’s pretty cool to me!

Is the 25% off Dropps subscription worth it?

I personally think the Dropps subscription is the only way to go because it’s such a huge discount! Plus, the 15% off code using DROPPS15 works on top of that.

You can also easily cancel any subscription online, which I do on occasion. You can also just keep the subscription and push the next ship date 4 months back as many times as you need.

One time, I got an email that my subscription charged to my card and I wasn’t anywhere near ready for more, so I emailed the customer service right away and within the hour they cancelled it and refunded my card.

Great customer service because I responded before it was packed and shipped.

Save 15% off your Dropps order with the code DROPPS15

Dropps offers wool dryer balls too

We also own and love the Dropps XL wool dryer balls set of 4. They cut my dryer time down by a noticeable amount, replace dryer sheets, and last for over 10,000 loads. Which is A LOT!

Check out my full review of the wool dryer balls here.

Share this Dropps laundry detergent review!

Do you have a friend that is looking to make some safer swaps for their home? Or maybe just looking to use a little less plastic in their lifetime? I’d be so thankful it if you would pin this post or share it to your socials!

If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them in the comments. We’ve been using these for over a year because they work and are a safe swap.

And yes, you can use this on top of the 25% off subscription discount if you go that route!

Be sure to check out my Branch Basics review after this! They are a slammin’ duo if you are trying to have less toxic products in your home.

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