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Product Focus: Charlie’s Soap

The Not-So Nutshell about Charlie’s Soap
Charlie Sutherland, Jr. while working for the local textile mill was instructed to create an oil for the knitting machines. It worked fantastically. Unfortunately, the oil was getting everywhere and making a big mess. Management said, fix the oil problem; make us a cleaner that clears up the oil, or we’ll drop the oil and you. Through trial and error, he came up with what is essentially the Grandpappy of Charlie’s Soap All Purpose Cleaner in 1976. Back then it was called 1001 or SPC-2069.
Long story short, Charlie eventually ended up taking over the little soap company that had been created to provide the cleaner to the textile mill. The mill started using it to clean thousands of machines that were destined for China, sort of the instrument of our own demise, we were. Literally tons of soap was used and as the workers were now in the stuff up to their knees, they started to realize that it was getting their own clothes clean, and not just the machines they were working on. So they started stealing it. When we finally cleaned the very last exported knitting machine, the textile workers, who had come to call it Charlie’s Soap (named after Charlie Sr. who was delivering the soap) insisted they still be able to purchase the soap; they were hooked!

Although we had lost over 90% of our business after the last machine as cleaned and shipped… the employees wouldn’t let us die! They used it liberally, and told their friends who then told their friends. Now, as a result, we have outlets all over the country and even the world; all as a result from little bubbly soap in a drum in some guy’s garage.

What’s in Charlie’s Soap?
Charlie’s Soap is made from a special blend of coconut oil based surfactants, and a water base. The All Purpose Cleaner also has a special solvent that helps loosen surface stains. The Laundry Liquid, which came years later doesn’t have that solvent and is reformulated to be thicker and more effective for washing clothes. The recent addition, the Laundry Powder is the same as the Laundry Liquid but we use high-grade fine washing soda instead of water as the base. All of the products work on the same principle. You don’t have to destroy surfaces or even stains to clean properly. You just have to effectively break the stains’ hold on surfaces. Our blend of surfactants goes in and very gently, breaks that bond and dirt just falls off. You don’t have to be toxic to do it, and in our case, you can do it with a very earth-friendly product. In our Laundry products we don’t have to add perfumes, fabric softeners or brighteners; the product simply goes in there, removes the soils causing the problems and you have fresh smelling clothes that feel and wear as if they were brand new.

Why choose Charlie’s?
First off, it works. Spray, pour, sprinkle it on, rub in, let it sit and rinse away, and no more dirt. We lose sleep making sure that it is the best and safest cleaner that money can buy. Sure you can use super harsh, caustic or acidic chemicals to clean, but why would you want to go through the pain of donning a chemical exposure suit just to clean the tub? Use Charlie’s Soap and you and yours are clean, really clean, safely. Another good thing to focus on this day and age is just good ole’ “Made in the USA.” We formulate, blend, and package all Charlie’s Soap products in North Carolina and we plan to keep it that way. Additionally, we’re just really nice, down-to-Earth people and truly take the time to talk to customers if they have issues.
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  1. Under the Son said...

    I can't wait to try this soap. A question for you….Have you used soap nuts to clean cloth diapers and if so how well do they work? I am interested in trying a variety of products and would like some input on them.

  2. Upstatemomof3 said...

    I love Charlie's soap – thanks fir the heads up on the company. Very interesting.

  3. Amanda said...

    Sounds like a great product!

    "I want, I want, I want…I need, I need, I need…Give me, Give me, Give me!" (Quote from movie: 'What About Bob?')


    Amanda G.

  4. ronandwhit said...

    We love Charlie's Soap! I bought it to use with our cloth diapers, but now we use it on all of our clothes. The All-Purpose Cleaner is amazing! Just this weekend I was cleaning our bathrooms and none of our bathroom cleaners were cutting through the soap scum residue. As a last resort, I sprayed the shower with the All-Purpose Cleaner. No more scrubbing! I just wiped it all away. So much easier!!

  5. Can't wait to try it out! I have heard a lot of great things about Charlie's.

  6. Serena said...

    Under the Son: I've tried the Soap Nuts liquid laundry detergent. I also have a small size of the standard Soap Nuts, however, honestly, I haven't even bothered to test those. The liquid is supposed to work really well and I did my thorough testing of the product – using the standard 1/4 amount for cloth diapers with an HE machine – and the results were abysmal. I had to wash the diapers 4 times before the diapers even smelled clean. Then, I tested using more – slowly testing the loads and ultimately working my way up to the full recommended amount by Soap Nuts (and not the recommended amount for cloth diapers). Even still, the diapers just did not get clean as I had expected.

    After numerous washes and abysmal results I didn't bother to test the actual Soap Nuts because I just didn't want to continue wasting water (we pay a pretty penny for our water here in San Diego)… Additionally, the Soap Nuts are pretty expensive compared to the other cloth diaper friendly detergents.

    I hope this helps!

  7. Katie said...

    That is a great story. Thanks for sharing!

  8. A Psych Mommy said...

    I love Charlie's Soap! We bought it a few months ago to wash our cloth diapers in it, but now we use it for all of our clothes too!

  9. Jenney said...

    We have switched to Charlies in the past year and LOVE it. We started it with diapers, and within a month used it on every article of clothing in our house. We love it!

  10. Shakira King said...

    This was great to read. A friend of mine recently started using Charlie's Soap and suggested it to me. I haven't started yet because she mentioned that it should be the only thing you use in your washer. I decided to wait until all of my current stuff was gone before I gave it a shot.

  11. Tiffany said...

    oooh good to know about the company and their product. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Thrifty Mama B said...

    Thanks for the inside scoop on Charlies, I didnt know much about them until tonight.

  13. Kelly said...

    I started using Charlie's Soap about 6 or 9 months ago and I love it! Works fantastically on diapers and all our other laundry and my very sensitive skin family has very few problems now as a result of this product.

  14. Lynn said...

    I LOVE how clean it makes everything! I also find it funny that CS is made partially from coconut oil. *grins*

    aithyne at gmail dot com

  15. Sara in Seattle said...

    Sounds like this is a great product!

  16. springmeus said...

    Charlie's Soap laundry detergent is great for my sensitive skin, and we love the All-Purpose Cleaner for virtually all household cleaning. It works especially well on our (vinyl tablecloth-covered) table after my son has pasta sauce. It also cleaned the front of my oven without any scrubbing – I was amazed! And one gallon of the All-Purpose lasts FOREVER since we dilute it.

  17. Beth E. said...

    I had been using Allen's Naturally detergent on my cloth diapers ever since I started cloth diapering. Which was about 8 months ago. But my diapers started to stink over time. I even stripped my diapers and they still stunk. So I finally decided to try Charlie's Soap. The first time I used Charlie's, the stink was GONE!
    I am never turning back! I'm even using it on everything now.

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