The difference between hand dishwash and dishwasher detergent

The difference between hand dishwash and dishwasher detergent


We wash dishes (almost) every day, but did you know that there is a big difference between hand dishwash and dishwashing detergent? Both are designed to clean your dishes, but they work in different ways and are made with different ingredients. In this article, we explain the difference between hand dishwash and dishwasher detergent, discuss the best ways to use them and give tips on choosing the right products.

What is hand dishwash?

Hand dishwash is a detergent specially designed for washing dishes by hand. It is a liquid soap that - in the case of Marcel's Green Soap - is gentle on the skin while being effective in removing grease and food residues from crockery, cutlery and pans. Detergent contains surfactants that help loosen grease and dirt so that it can be easily rinsed away.

When choosing a hand dishwash, it is important to pay attention to the ingredients. For instance, check that there are no dyes, parabens, phosphates, chlorine, ammonia or acid in the product. These harmful ingredients are really not necessary to get your dishes clean. Rather choose a product that is eco-friendly and biodegradable. Marcel's Green Soap hand dishwash, for example!

What is dishwashing detergent?

Dishwashing detergent, also known as dishwasher tablets or dishwasher capsules, are specifically designed for use in dishwashers. This product is more powerful than dishwasher detergent and contains ingredients that help remove stubborn dirt and stains. Dishwasher detergent is not meant to make direct contact with the skin. Many dishwashing products contain strong chemicals that can cause skin irritation. Marcel's Green Soap's dishwasher tablets and dishwasher capsules do not contain dyes, parabens, phosphates, chlorine, ammonia or acids. They are made with natural ingredients and 99% biodegradable. Fun fact: our dishwasher capsules are the first eco dishwasher capsules in the Netherlands!

Some dishwasher tablets also contain salt and rinse aid to get dishes extra clean and streak-free. These dishwasher tablets and dishwasher capsules are also called all-in-one. You will no longer need extra salt and rinse aid. Marcel's Green Soap dishwasher tablets and capsules are both all-in-one. Now that's convenient!

Hand dishwash:

  • Specially developed for hand dishwashing
  • Contains surfactants that loosen grease and dirt
  • Often mild and gentle on skin
  • May contain additional caring ingredients such as aloe vera or glycerine

Dishwasher detergent:

  • Specially formulated for dishwashers
  • Contains strong ingredients to remove stubborn dirt
  • May contain salt and rinse aid for extra cleaning power
  • Available in tablets, powders, capsules and gels


Use and application

The use of dishwasher detergent and dishwashing detergent vary considerably, due to their different purposes.

Hand dishwash: is used by dissolving a small amount of the product in warm water and scrubbing the dishes with a brush. It is important to make sure there is enough foam and to rinse the dishes well to remove soap residue. Hand dish soap is ideal for cleaning delicate items such as crystal and porcelain, which may not be safe in the dishwasher. Check out our article on how to choose the best dishwasher detergent for your tableware here.

Dishwasher detergent: is used in the dishwasher, usually in a special compartment. The detergent works with the dishwasher's hot water and spray arms to clean dishes thoroughly. Modern dishwashers often have eco programmes that use less water and energy, making the use of dishwasher detergent more efficient and environmentally friendly.

 Tip from Marcel: Do you often wash on eco mode? Then once a month, turn on a programme at a high temperature (around 70 degrees). If you wash at a lower temperature (such as the eco setting) more often, there is a good chance that grease and dirt will be left behind. Washing occasionally on a high temperature can prevent this.


Frequently asked questions about detergents

  • Can I use hand dishwash? No, hand dishwash is not suitable for use in the dishwasher. If you do, it can cause excessive foaming and flooding. Therefore, always use a dishwasher detergent designed specifically for dishwashers.
  • Should I pre-rinse my dishes before putting them in the dishwasher? Pre-rinsing costs extra energy and water. Therefore, scrape the food residues from your dishes instead of pre-rinsing. In many cases, pre-rinsing is unnecessary. Do you have a very dirty, crusted oven dish? Then it may help to soak the dish in washing-up liquid overnight. Just place the dish in the sink for a while and put it in the dishwasher the next day, or wash it by hand.
  • How can I make my dishwashing routine more sustainable? Choose sustainable detergents and reduce your energy and water consumption. Find more tips here.
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