While some household cleaning can require an arrangement of heavy-duty cleaners to remove dirt, grease, and grime, certain tasks need a milder approach.
Soaps and detergents can be mild or harsher depending upon their ingredients. Soaps meant for skin are created differently from soaps that clean your household.
What is considered as Mild Soap?
A mild soap is a cleaning product that does not cause damage to the skin. A soap with a pH value of 5.5 to 7 which closer to the pH of skin is considered as mild soap for the skin. The pH value of skin on face and most part of our body is approximately between 4.7 and 5.75.
A mild soap doesn’t cause dryness to your skin or damage the surface you are cleaning. In true sense only soaps made out of oil and lye are mild soaps; however, commercial soaps with optimal pH value and skin nourishing content are also considered as mild. An example of commercial mild soap would be Dove.
What about cleaning products and detergents? Are there mild detergents?
How Do Soaps and Detergents Differ?
Due to molecular structures, it is almost impossible to remove certain dirt with water alone.
Oil and water do not mix and require an added element to remove oily substances. At a basic level, mild soaps and detergents are made up of the same base substance that can break up dirt and bacteria. This substance, known as surfactants, reduces the surface tension of water so that dirt, essentially making the water “wetter”.
Surfactants are found in mild soaps as they do not include aggressive elements like builders. Instead, the surfactants are safe and just destroy the connections between solids, making grease and dirt easier to clean and wash away.
While made from the same base substance, the types of surfactants are what make the difference between soap and detergents.
- Soaps are made from naturally occurring animal fats or vegetable oils. Coconut oil, tallow, and olive oil are popular soap bases. This is then combined with an alkaline metal solution, which breaks it down into the salt and creates the final soap.
- Detergents, on the other hand, use synthetic sources, such as petroleum. While this tends to be the general differentiating factor, products are known to blend both natural and artificial ingredients.
Where Can I Find Mild Soap?
Mild soaps and detergents are used in the home every day. Washing dishes, doing the laundry, and cleaning the floor are all examples of situations where mild soap would be used.
These situations require mild soap as they are often materials or objects that are unsuited to harsh chemicals.
Harsh soaps are one of the primary reasons for skin damages. They will result in dry skin and eventually cause deeper damages. I prefer mild bath soaps such as Jergens or Dove bar soaps. If you are into herbal products make sure that their pH rating is close to 6.
One of the most common household examples of mild detergent is used almost every day in the form of dish soap.
Standard dishwashing liquid is a mild and simple soap that can be used for more than just washing dishes. Dish soap is incredibly effective for removing grease or burnt-on grime. This solution is transferable to other household cleaning tasks, both outdoor and indoor.
Mild soap can also be found in the form of hardwood floor cleaners. Murphy Oil Soap, Citra-Solv, and Pine-Sol are all cleaners derived from vegetable oils rather than oil.
Like most soaps, hardwood floor cleaners are mixed with water to get the desired effect, usually diluted ¼ cup of cleaner to 1 gallon of water.
Liquid laundry detergent is, on the whole, an example of a mild cleaner.
Due to the delicate nature of certain fabrics, delicate wash detergents can be some of the mildest cleaners. Ecover and Planet are eco-friendly brands that offer mild laundry detergents.
Often the mildest of laundry detergents are free of dyes and fragrances. Additives like these can affect the items being cleaned and sometimes cause skin irritations and other ailments in people with chemical sensitivities.
Mild cleaners and mild soaps are great for people with sensitive skin as they are more delicate and safer for the environment around you. Mild soaps are also better for cleaning difficult materials, and it’s easy to find the right one for your task. If you are using soapy water solution as a pesticide, going for a mild one would ensure that your plant is safe.
Mild Soap for Shoes, Leather and Glasses
Sneakers and shoes can very quickly become dull and dirty after a few wears. Many companies offer solutions and cleaners specifically for cleaning footwear.
However, a simple mild soap can help to restore shoes to their new-shoe shine.
The method for cleaning sneakers does not tend to differ depending on the fabric, and any liquid dish soap will work for cleaning shoes.
Applying a single teaspoon of dish soap to a water solution will effectively dilute the mixture for cleaning. Using a small and bristly brush to clean the shoes can help remove the dirt effectively.
Cleaning Leather with Mild Soap
Leather is a very delicate material, and harsh cleaners can quickly cause damage. As mild soap is a gentle cleanser, applying a small amount will effectively clean the fabric.
When cleaning, work the soap into the leather with gentle circular motions. Any excess moisture can be absorbed with a clean, dry cloth.
As leather is so susceptible to damage, it is good to test the mild soap in a small spot before moving to a larger area. This can apply to leather in many different situations like seats, bags, clothes and more.
Mild Soap for Glasses
Opticians recommended regular cleaning for glasses. This can be done using a specialized cleaner or a mild soap. Dish soap or hand soap that is lotion-free can be applied to frames. When cleaning the lenses it is best to use a hand soap instead, due to the mild nature. After applying a small drop of soap to each lens, gently rub both sides.
Apply additional soap with your fingertips to properly clean the nose pads and earpieces of your frames. It’s important to clean these areas as grease, hair products, and makeup tends to rub off here and build up. Once applied, rinse thoroughly under warm water, making sure to remove any of the remaining soap or bubbles.
An Essential Product
Mild soap can be found in many of your essential household cleaners. A safe and accessible product, mild soap like dish soap or laundry detergent can help clean complex or delicate materials without risk or damage.
Some traditional or normal soaps can include harsh chemicals that can destroy the thing you’re cleaning and even irritate your own skin. Sticking to cleaning with mild soap and water is a tried and trusted way to remove dirt, grime, and grease.