Sustainable behaviour is a shared responsibility today to ensure a viable future for generations to come. Just as decisions on energy sources, transport modes or food decisions need to be considered with our environmental impact in mind, so too, we need to consider how our washing and cleaning practices affect the planet, and where possible, find ways to reduce our ecological footprint with more sustainable cleaning practices.

P&G offers tips to get the best laundry and cleaning results in the most sustainable manner. These tips will allow you to reduce the consumption of detergents, water and energy while saving money and contributing to a better environment. While these tips may seem like small savings, if everyone followed P&G’s advice, the reductions in water used and CO2 emissions would be quite significant.
P&G has created products which can deliver outstanding cleaning results at lower temperatures, with less water and in smaller detergent volumes. With these tips, you can make a difference.

  • Reduce your ecological footprint at the point of purchase

    There is an easy way to spot which detergents are best for your pocket and for the environment: they are simply the ones that have come onto the market most recently. These detergents have the latest sustainable innovations to reduce their environmental impact.

    • Buy high-quality detergent and cleaning brands. They are more efficient at washing and cleaning and will last much longer, making them more cost effective in the long run
    • Today’s compact detergents are lighter than their predecessors, so they are easier to carry home from the supermarket. They also allow you to dose less, which saves product and reduces packaging waste
    • Select compact detergents, refill pouches, tablets or liquitabs instead of big-box products. They will all provide roughly the same number of doses and it is clear that the use of compacted products involves less packaging
    • When you buy refill pouches for your detergent you can give your bottle or cardboard detergent pack a longer lifetime and will not need to throw it away when it is empty
    • Always look at the pictogram which shows the number of doses in each pack; this is an easy way (standardized across all European detergent brands) to find out how many wash loads you can do with different detergent brands
    • If you purchase all-in-one dishwashing tablets then you don’t need to worry about adding extra ingredients or products into the wash, saving time and money
    • If you are in the market for new appliances, buy the ones that are as energy and water efficient as possible and use the energy and water-saving cycles. This will also save you money in the long run.

    Looking for the detergent brands that offer the best performance with the least environmental impact? To find out more about products that are for sale in your country and what goes into each of our products (full ingredient lists), take a look at

  • Reduce your ecological footprint during use

    Life cycle studies show that the greatest potential environmental impact in a detergent’s life cycle is found during the use phase. There are simple steps that can be taken to reduce the impact, lowering energy and water consumption, saving money while still getting a great wash performance.

    • The simplest thing you can do for the environment is wash at a lower temperature (dishes as well as laundry). This saves energy. Washing at lower temperatures will also allow you to properly clean delicate items without the risk of them breaking or colour fading.
    • Make proper use of your household appliances, for example by using energy and water-saving cycles where available
    • Adopt efficient practices such as filling washing machines before switching them on.
    • When you use a dishwasher, only start a cycle when it is full. Modern dishwashers can use less than 15 litres of water per cycle, so try not to use extra cycles. By using economy or water saving cycles, consumers can save up to 1500 litres per year per household
    • Cut out the laundry pre-wash. Many current products use formulations which will still give you brilliant results without pre-washing, saving between five and 15 litres of water and the energy needed to heat and run it.
    • When you do the dishes by hand, rinse all dishes at the same time in cold water and do not rinse under running water. When placing the product directly on the sponge, turn off the tap while using the sponge on the dishes. This can save on average up to 12 litres per minute
    • Use the correct detergent dosage for the amount of washing you are doing, the level of soiling and water hardness. Many detergents now clean very well in lower volumes and overdosing will not generally improve the results
    • One way to make sure you always get the dosage right is to use tablets or liquitabs. Since one tablet or liquitab always equals a single dose, there is no danger of getting it wrong
    • Make sure you use the correct cycle for the laundry you are washing. Sort your laundry so that you can wash the same types of clothes in the same wash
    • Fill the machine correctly. To save water, add more laundry to each wash (but don’t overfill the machine) and wash more infrequently. By moving from six to five washes a week, you could save 30 litres of water on 18 kilos of laundry
    • For dishwashers pre-treat burnt or baked-on food with Fairy Power Spray
    • If you use all-in-one dishwashing tablets then you don't need to worry about adding extra ingredients or products into the wash - saving time and mone
    • Do not stack cups inside each other in the dishwasher
    • Follow the usage instructions on your detergent, your appliance and the items you are washing. It will help make sure you get optimal results every time and do not have to wash things twice
    • Check the appliance manufacturer's instructions to see if they provide an energy and water-use rating for each cycle. It is important that you get the facts on water and energy use for the most-used cycles of your laundry or dishwasher machines.
    • Look after your washing machine and give it a regular service wash (once per 4-6 weeks). This is a hot wash with no clothes in the machine. Wash at 60 degrees or more and use an oxygen bleach-containing detergent such as Ariel powder detergents (Ariel Biological Powder in UK). This avoids the build-up of soil in your machine which over time could cause malodours due to the growth of bacteria.

    See the P&G pages for more information on how you can reduce energy and water consumption.

  • Reduce your ecological footprint after use

    Sustainable wash practices continue even after the wash is done. How the product is packaged and stored influences the amount of packaging you need and the requirement for waste management. While recycling is important, reducing consumption makes even a better environmental impact.

    • You can limit the amount of packs that you go through by using high quality detergent and cleaning brands. They are more efficient at washing and cleaning and will last much longer so that you get more washes per pack
    • You can also make a difference by buying compact or refillable detergents when available, as these have considerably less packaging than standard equivalents
    • Get information on the waste collection schemes in your region and find out how you can take part in these
    • Check packaging symbols to make sure you recycle or dispose of packages correctly. Besides reducing landfill, recycling will help avoid using energy to create new packaging from virgin raw materials.

    See the P&G pages for more information on how compaction makes a difference and on how you can reduce packaging.

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