Canstar Blue’s 2021 laundry powder review compares ALDI (Trimat & Almat), Radiant, Duo, Fab, Coles, Coles Ultra, OMO, Cold Power, Biozet Attack and Surf on their cleaning quality, feel of clothes after wash, scent, eco-friendliness, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
While doing the laundry comes with risks – such as shrinking clothes or accidentally turning your favourite white shirt a different colour – it is a necessary chore to keep us looking and feeling fresh. For some, the washing machine is a mystery, with many of us sticking to the tried and true method of the regular wash for everything, while others venture out to different wash settings for a more targeted clean. Even if you’re a washing veteran, choosing the best laundry detergent for your needs can feel like guesswork.
Choosing between laundry liquid and powder is the first hurdle to get over, and for those who stand by powder as their favoured laundry weapon of choice, there are plenty of options to narrow down when it comes to finding the best brand for your needs and budget.
To help you in your search, we surveyed more than 1,000 Australian consumers for their feedback on the laundry detergent(s) they bought and used in the last three months. Respondents scored brands on cleaning quality, feel of clothes post-wash, scent, packaging design, environmental friendliness, value for money and overall satisfaction. Brands that received the minimum survey sample size (30 responses) are compared in our ratings.
ALDI got the thumbs up for its laundry powder for the second year in a row, but this time with the ALDI Almat range, while ALDI Trimat dominated our ratings last year. It rated best with a five-star review for overall satisfaction and in several other categories.
Here are the best laundry powders in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s latest review:
ALDI’s slogan ‘good, but different’ certainly applies in the case of laundry powder ─ the brand is now leading the way in our latest ratings with its Almat range after similarly ranking number one with its Trimat line last year. It rated best with five stars for overall satisfaction, while most other brands ended on four stars overall. The two exceptions were Surf and Coles, which both sat on three stars for overall satisfaction.
Radiant was another brand that loaded up on five-star reviews in the key areas of quality of clean, feel of clothes after wash and packaging design. It additionally scored full marks for scent, alongside Duo, Fab and Surf. Duo also scored the same result for environmental friendliness.
If you’re not sure what’s on offer in terms of scent, detergents for sensitive skin or those that will whip white shirts back into looking brand new, read on to find out which brand may be the best fit for your home.
With ALDI now a popular option for the household grocery shop, the German chain offers a range of laundry powders for you to add to your trolley. Almat laundry powder is one of the cheaper options in comparison to other ALDI brands, with a 2kg pack priced at $5.29.
Suitable for top and front loaders, plus high-efficiency top loader machines, Almat is available in five scents, including ‘Spicy Temptations’, ‘Sunshine Fresh’, ‘Arctic Breeze’ and ‘Tropical Escape’. The range is claimed to use triple enzyme action to help remove stains effectively, plus different surfactants for strong cleaning power. ALDI Almat is also said to work in both hot and cold wash and to contain no phosphates.
Radiant offers a variety of laundry powders to suit different types of fabrics and needs. For something seriously powerful, its Radiant Advanced+ Ultra Power is said to use a mix of built-in pre-treaters and enzymes to lift stubborn stains (even ones that have dried in for 48 hours). And for mixed loads, the brand claims its new Radiant Mixed Colours offers better colour protection than previously. It’s also said to use Colour Guard technology and an anti-dye transfer system to prevent colours from transferring onto each other.
Radiant’s laundry powders are available at all supermarkets, as well as other retailers such as Big W and Target. These are usually sold in 1.8kg, 2kg or 4kg packs, costing between $9.75 and $24.
ALDI Trimat is the discount supermarket’s very own ‘everyday’ laundry range, which includes laundry liquids and powders in Regular, Sensitive, Colour Care and Concentrate varieties. ALDI claims its Trimat range was developed with concentrated formulations that require less packaging and doses – to save you money and help the Earth at the same time.
Suitable for both front load washing machines and top loader models, ALDI Trimat contains pre-treaters to help boost whites and colours, with no phosphates for a more environmentally friendly wash. ALDI Trimat liquid detergents come in 1L bottles and will cost you just $3.99 at the checkout. Laundry powders come in 1.5kg packs for $5.79.
Duo is another popular brand of laundry powder, suitable for both front and top-loading washing machines. All Duo products are claimed to contain a concentrated formula that features an ‘Opti-Brightener’ system that breaks down stains and lifts dirt from your clothes.
Duo’s range includes a ‘Cleans & Whitens’ option in a fresh linen scent, a fragrance-free Cleans & Cares Powder and a Cleans & Softener option in the ‘Exotic Tiger Lily’ scent. Duo is sold in most supermarkets and chemists, in either 1kg, 2kg or 5kg varieties (up to 95 washes).
For many, Fab would be one of the first brands to come to mind when it comes to doing the laundry, operating around the globe for decades. Owned by German company Henkel, Fab delivers a range of powders and liquids to take care of all your washing needs. There are several products to choose from, such as Fab Intense Fresh for removing odours. Fab’s Fresh line, available in ‘Frangipani’ and ‘Fresh Blossoms’, is similarly designed to keep garments smelling fresh for up to 30 days (stored). Plus, there’s the Fab Natural Elements Powder which is said to contain recyclable packaging and no added phosphates.
Fab’s laundry powders come in 1kg, 1.8kg, 2kg, 3.8kg and 4kg packs. Prices start from $4.49 and go up to $12.99 for the value packs.
With a couple of laundry detergents available, supermarket giant Coles has a couple of options for shoppers as they cruise down the aisle. There’s the Coles Laundry Powder Concentrate Sensitive, which is described as a dermatologically tested product that’s tough on stains and gentle on skin. Coles Ultra’s line-up also offers the Laundry Powder Concentrate, which contains odour controlling technology and is suitable for both top and front load washing machines. Coles Ultra’s laundry powders are claimed to be made in Australia and usually sold in a 2kg pack for $6.50.
Like Surf, OMO is owned by global consumer goods company Unilever. OMO’s current ranges include Active Clean, Ultimate, Sensitive and Expert Anti-Bacterial. For households that need a product that’s gentle on skin, OMO’s Sensitive Laundry Powder is said to be dermatologically tested and contains no dyes or perfumes. The brand alternatively has the Active Clean line, which features built-in pre-treaters to remove tough stains made of messes like grease, chocolate, mud and grass.
OMO laundry powders are available in 1kg, 1.8kg, 2kg and 5kg boxes. These can set you back between $8 for a 1kg pack and up to $30 for the 5kg option. The range is suitable for all types of washing machines.
Owned by German company Henkel, Cold Power began life in the United States in the 1960s before its global expansion. In today’s Aussie supermarkets, Cold Power is available in 900g, 2kg and 4kg packages, depending on the variety you’re after. Cold Power comes in ‘Sensitive’, ‘2-in-1’ and ‘Complete Action’ powders, along with special products that contain fabric softener for a more complete wash.
On the higher end of the price spectrum, Cold Power is suitable for both front and top loader machines. Expect to pay around $16 for its 2kg box and around $20 for the 4kg option. Its sensitive powder is said to be perfume-free and contain no added phosphate or dyes, and has been dermatologically tested, making it ideal for those with sensitive skin.
Biozet Attack offers multiple laundry powders, including 3D Clean Action for stain removal and colour protection, and the PLUS Eliminator for getting rid of sweaty and musty smells and odours caused by the fabrics being left damp in the washing machine. Biozet Attack also offers the PLUS Softener, which is claimed to contain a fabric softener with fibre smoothing to help make ironing easier.
Biozet Attack is available in most supermarkets in packs of 1kg, 2kg, 5.4kg and 6kg, depending on the product. Most Biozet Attack laundry powders are suitable for both front and top load machines, but it’s best to check the packaging before you put it in your shopping basket.
Surf is another brand offering an affordable range of laundry powders, typically costing between $8.50 for a 2kg box and $13 for 4kg. There are several 5-in-1 options, available in ‘Tropical, ‘Herbals’ and ‘Luxury’ scents. Suitable for all machine types, these are said to remove bad odours, as well as dirt and grime to ensure a long-lasting fragrance.
Coles’ other budget line of everyday products also offers washing detergents, for both front and top loaders. This range includes the Coles Laundry Powder in ‘Tropical Paradise’, which is said to provide up to 44 washes. The supermarket additionally has the ‘Lemon Fresh’ option, which is suitable for hot and cold wash. This Coles private label is among the cheapest you can find, with prices starting from just $3.70 for a 4kg box and going up to $6.30.
While for some of us, the only factor that influences which laundry powder we buy is the price tag, for others, picking a laundry detergent is crucial to feeling and smelling fresh. While most consumers we surveyed typically buy the same brand of laundry powder (45%), a fifth still opt for whichever product is the cheapest (21%).
With that said, general consumer feedback suggests that all-rounders like ALDI Almat and Radiant are the way to go. Both brands led this year’s laundry powder review, impressing respondents across several categories such as quality of clean, scent and packaging design (including ease of use). Duo is another brand that scored multiple five-star reviews.
With brands offering a range of powders to tackle any workload, households can also breathe a sigh of relief when it comes to things like skin allergies and sensitivity, with plenty of brands offering allergen-free powders for extra comfort and peace of mind.
Most laundry powders are now developed to work with both front and top loader washing machines. So, you might want to think about factors such as price, scent and environmental sustainability when deciding which laundry powder to buy. Most brands will have ingredients information on their websites, so it doesn’t hurt to do your own research before your next grocery shop.
Our ratings are based on the real-world experiences of Aussie consumers who have bought and used the brands in our 2021 review. The supermarket cleaning aisle can be a tough one to navigate, with so many laundry detergents on sale, so we hope our review proves helpful in narrowing your search.
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
Canstar Blue surveyed more than 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and used laundry powder in the last three months – in this case, 1,027 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
Here are the previous winners of Canstar Blue’s laundry powder review:
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