Washing Dishes (From an expert)

I consider myself to be an expert at dish washing. I have lived without a dishwasher for 6 years. Now, I’m not saying I wouldn’t love to have a dishwasher–because I would.

I WOULD LOVE ONE. (And have my eye on a few….another post for another day…)

I figure it would save me on average about 1.5 hours a day to have a dishwasher. No joke.

I do tons of cooking and baking, and I have 2 children. (One in particular who thinks she needs to use a different spoon for every different food on her plate. The other uses his hands most of the time.)

I’ve gone through my share of liquid detergents. Most of the time, it doesn’t make a difference, in my opinion. (Unless we’re talking natural detergents, like the one I sometimes buy at Trader Joe’s. It doesn’t create any suds, which I think matters. Maybe I’m wrong.)

I usually buy Palmolive because I really do like it (especially the Oxy Plus line.)

I bought this on a whim because it was on sale at Target–

It’s super concentrated, so the bottle is small. I love that.

And it smells so good. I swear–it makes washing the dishes a pleasure. There is something relaxing about the lavender and ylang ylang. It’s almost like a lovely bubble bath for your hands–okay, not really. But it smells good and I like that–especially if I’m washing out plastic containers that have sat in my husband’s lunch bag for a few days.


The jury is still out for me about sponges and scrubbing brushes. (We call them scrubbers.)

I buy my scrubbers at IKEA because they are so cheap and do the job nicely. (I use one in my bathroom to clean my sink and tub, and the faucets.)

I like them each for different reasons, and therefore use them both on a daily basis. I usually use Scotch Brite sponges with a scouring pad on one side. I think they last the longest. I usually toss my sponges once a week. (Bonus tip: microwave your sponge daily for a few minutes to keep them clean and smelling nice.)

What else do I use on a daily basis?

Um, that would be THIS–

I was always a little scared of this thing. But then I bought one after buying horrible pans that I hate. (I won’t slander the brand on this site.)

I use my stainless steel scrubber all the time for other things, too.

*Baking sheets

*Cast-iron (when needed, but by nature they don’t usually need it)

*Clear glass baking pans–like the Pyrex–it doesn’t scratch them, honestly!

I do not use it on my enameled pans or baking dishes–it will scratch them. (More later on getting them spic n’ span.)

They are a little hard to find sometimes. I can’t even find them at my local Target. There are places online, like alwaysbrilliant.com. Most places online offer them in cases.

But, they are also good for other uses, like cleaning your BBQ or your oven. And did I mention they are rust-proof? Yep, that’s why I love them.

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  1. One thing about doing dishes by hand is the nice stuff stays nicer.. My glasses are really shot from the dishwasher. I will buy some of that for when I have to do piles of dishes at the church. Good post. :)

  2. I also really like the Seventh Generation brand. It’s sudsy enough for me and it smells good. :) But I’m a soap-on-the-sponge type girl rather then a fill-the-basin one. :)P

  3. I’m currently using Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day lavender for hand washing. Well, not me most of the time, since my husband does almost all the dishes, but that’s what’s sitting next to our sink. I actually prefer the lemon verbena scent, which is divine (it also comes in geranium).

    As for dishwashers, we’ve been pretty happy with our Asko, which we’ve now had almost five years (we have the one that’s all-stainless with hidden controls). Very quiet, very efficient, and gets things really clean WITH NO RINSING. Awesome.

  4. Have you tried Seventh Generation’s Lavender and Mint dish soap? Smells divine, and works better than anything I’ve ever tried.

    I’m new to your website,and I love it! I’ll definitely be back again.

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