Greenwash: Clorox Green Works


Clorox has a line of green cleaners on the market right now called Clorox Green Works. I think their intention is to get involved in all the hype around going green and maximize their profits. I don’t think they are interested in saving the planet, or decreasing the amount of toxins in households.  The other day I was in the store and happened to grab a bottle of their “natural dishwashing liquid”.  I wanted to see what its ingredients were.

Filtered water
Coconut-based cleaning agents*
Corn-based ethanol
Blue and Yellow colorant (probably synthetic)
Biodegradable preservative
Citric acid
Essential oils

*anionic and nonionic surfactants: alkyl polyglucoside, sodium lauryl sulfate and cocodimethyl amine oxide

Sodium lauryl sulfate in a “natural” cleaner?  Blue and Yellow Coloring?  Way to go Clorox.  I would much rather spend a little extra money and buy something like Planet dishwashing liquid so I know that I’m buying a more natural product.  I just think it’s so crappy that Clorox markets it’s product as green yet includes non natural ingredients.  Not cool, Clorox.

What kind of dishwashing liquid do you use?

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15 thoughts on “Greenwash: Clorox Green Works

  1. Laura @GettingThere says:

    I use natural stuff to clean everything else–but I have never found a natural dishwashing soap that actually works well and doesn’t have a smell that gives me a headache. So for quite a while I’ve been using Palmolive Oxy. But last time I bought it, they had changed the formula–now it absolutely stinks (the smell, I mean). AND they changed the shape of the bottle so you won’t notice that it contains considerably less than before! (For the same price, of course!)

    I WISH that I could find a natural solution to dishwashing that didn’t smell. Seriously, strong smells always give me a headache. Even tea tree oil sometimes.


  2. Simple in France says:

    Phew! I saw that headline in my reader and was afraid you were endorsing Clorox ‘green’ items. Nothing green about clorox. Apparently it’s just a marketing technique.

    I was very happy with the all purpose cleaner I found at our organic shop in France earlier this year. . .and then I switched to vinegar and was very pleased with that as well–I don’t have to worry about any fake stuff. . .plus who knows what kinds of factories they make clorox in or how it pollutes our environment.


    Money Funk Reply:

    LOL. I thought the same about the title ‘works’. Didn’t realize it was part of the brand name.

    What about Meyer’s Clean Day?


  3. Lisanne says:

    Yeah, I grabbed one of those on sale one day without really looking at it. I wasn’t impressed. I use Seventh Generation because I can get it at the commissary and it’s affordable. I do miss the scented stuff though.


  4. Tegan says:

    I try to be environmentally aware whilst also trying to be cost-aware. In Australia, we have a range of cleaning products (toilet cleaner, multi-purpose cleaner, dishwashing liquid) branded ‘Earth choice’ that claim to be friendly to the environment. I don’t know exactly how ‘green’ they are, but the product that is flushed down the drain is not supposed to harm the environment. They are competitvely priced, to the point of being one of the most cost-effective products on the shelves. Looking at the products you can see there are no artificial colours used, as the products are very faintly coloured (due to plant-oils used for scent), if coloured at all.

    We also have Aware washing powder (for clothes) made by Planet Ark, which is cruelty-free – so no animal-derived ingredients or animal testing of the product itself. This is somewhat expensive, but I find the moral value of the product too hard to resist.


  5. BibleDebt says:

    Thanks for pointing this out. It is sad that everyone jumps on the bandwagon even if they don’t really have a “green” product. The only thing green about some of the products is their color.


  6. Cathy says:

    Good old vinegar and water works great on grease and hard water stains (add essential oils to soften up the scent. Also a mix of quart of hot water, 1teaspoon dishsoap and 1 teaspoon borax mix well to disolve the borax. I add a small amount of essentials oil for scent and put in a spray bottle. A great all purpose cleaner. For scrubbing baking soda or bon ami works great.


  7. FinEngr says:

    Mrs. Money:

    To play devil’s advocate here…

    I don’t know much about this product and it just looks like soap, but being “green” is slightly different from being “natural”.

    Ever get that dizzy sensation cleaning in a confined area? In the case of solutions, reducing the amount of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) is considered a green act since it improves IAQ (indoor air quality). So eliminating the harmful gases would outweigh whatever un-natural compounds the product still contains.


  8. Jenny says:

    One time I ran out of dish liquid, so I used a natural bar of soap I’d put at the sink for handwashing. It worked fine so I kept using it. That was months ago and we haven’t nearly run out yet. Dish liquid has a tendency (in my house) to get squirted out a little too liberally, which is a waste of money.


  9. Sue says:

    I was very disappointed to see this product hit the stores, as it was clear many would be swayed. “Oh, it says it’s green so it must be okay to buy. No more ecological guilt for me.”

    Being an animal rights activist as well as an environmentalist, Clorox has long been one of the companies that are so far down my shopping list they fall off. It is gratifying, therefore, to read the comments of many who are willing and able to see beyond the translucent green curtain.

    Personally, I am quite happy with good old vinegar and water, baking soda, a few Seventh Generation products, and especially Dr. Bronner’s.

    Regardless what I use, I refuse to purchase or utilize any product that is not Leaping Bunny certified.


    Mrs Money Reply:

    Sue- Thanks for the tip about Leaping Bunny! I have recently tried Seventh Generation dish soap and I really like it!


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