The Best Zero-Waste, Sustainable, and Non-Toxic Dish Soaps for Sensitive Skin

Sophie Hirsh - Author

Apr. 28 2022, Published 12:24 p.m. ET

Best Dish Soap for Sensitive Skin
Source: Getty Images

Getting your dishes clean shouldn’t cost you your soft hands — or the planet. So, we’ve rounded up a few of the best dish soaps for sensitive skin, all of which are vegan and cruelty-free.

Many of the dish soap brands on this list are also zero waste and plastic-free, and a few are EWG Verified as well. Here's hoping buying a shiny, new, eco-friendly dish soap will help make the process of washing up slightly less boring.

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Dropps’ Dish Spray

Best known for its laundry pods, zero-waste company Dropps also makes a Power Dish Spray, in both Unscented and Lemon Verbena varieties. According to the brand, the dish spray’s formula is non-toxic, and made with biodegradable, plant-derived ingredients and natural essential oils.

Dropps’ Power Dish Spray Starter Kit comes with a refillable amber glass spray bottle, as well as a refill concentrate that includes enough to make six more bottles of dish soap. To refill your spray bottle, just pour in a small amount of the refill concentrate, and fill the rest with water, keeping this product zero waste. Dropps is also fully cruelty-free, vegan, and paraben-free, and mails orders in plastic-free packaging.

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etee’s Dish Soap Concentrate

Small business etee identifies as an "indie brand" with a mission to "make plastic free living for everyone." The company makes a Dish Soap Concentrate that is packaged in small, biodegradable pods. Just open the pod and pour the concentrate into a dispenser (you can buy a glass soap dispenser from etee or use your own), and combine with water.

The dish soap is made with 100 percent plant-based ingredients, and is free from SLS, phthalates, sulphates, and synthetic fragrance. The etee concentrates come in scents including Unscented, Lavender Lime, and Citrus.

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Grove Collaborative’s Ultimate Dish Soap

Grove Collaborative’s Ultimate Dish Soap
Source: Grove Co.

If you prefer a dish soap that already comes as a liquid, Grove Collaborative’s Ultimate Dish Soap may be the zero-waste solution for you. The cruelty-free and vegan dish soap is sold in aluminum refill bottles, which you can either keep by your sink, or pour into a squeeze or pump bottle (Grove Co. sells glass pump bottles, but you can also just use one you already have).

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Grove Co.’s dish soap refills come in Free & Clear (unscented) as well as a few scented varieties, including Lavender Blossom & Thyme, Lemon & Eucalyptus, and Apple & Pear Blossom, all of which are scented with natural fragrance. Plus, HGTV's Jeremiah Brent partnered with the brand in January 2022 to create a few products, including dish soap refills in Eucalyptus & Cypress and Himalayan Sea Salt & Sage, both of which are currently sold out but will be back soon.

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These are the best best dish soap brands according to the EWG:

Though no consumer should live and die by the Environmental Working Group’s ratings, checking out which products are EWG Verified can be a good place to start when looking for a new product. Interestingly, only two dish soaps made the cut and are EWG Verified. There’s the AspenClean Dish Soap, which is cruelty-free, vegan, fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, and sensitive skin-friendly; and while the product comes in a plastic bottle, it is at least packaged in a 100 percent recycled plastic bottle.

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The other EWG Verified dish soap is Attitude’s Nature+ Dish Soap in the Unscented variety, which is cruelty-free, vegan, and free of ingredients like phthalates, parabens, and formaldehyde. Attitude’s dish soaps also come in a few scents, such as Coriander and Olive, Wildflowers, and Citrus Zest, which are scented naturally. Though this dish soap also comes in a plastic bottle, you can also order refills that come in large cartons, which help save on waste.

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If You Care’s zero-waste, eco-friendly dish gloves can also protect sensitive skin when washing dishes.

In addition to using a gentle dish soap to wash your dishes, you may want to consider using reusable rubber dish gloves. While most dish gloves are made from plastic and therefore landfill-bound, we have found one option that is actually zero-waste: If You Care’s Household Gloves.

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The gloves are made from FSC Certified latex (meaning that the natural rubber is sourced from a responsibly-managed farm) and lined with cotton. And the best part is that these gloves are actually compostable — just use scissors to cut them into 1-inch pieces before tossing them in your compost bin.

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