Gain Dish Detergent Review: Original Scent

by Taylor

I've been seeing Gain dish detergent on the shelves for months now at the store, and finally broke down and bought some to try when I saw a cute little mini bottle for sale cheap.


I'd been wanting to know what it smelled liked, and how it worked for a while and thought this was a great time to do so.

I chose the Original scent (that comes in green), but there are also other scents available. These include Spring Lavender (purple), Apple Berry twist (red, and formerly known as Apple Mango Tango - but may have been reformulated), Honeyberry Hula, with bleach alternative (bluish turquoise), and antibacterial Lemon Zest (yellow).

I admit I debated for a while about which one to buy, and may still go back to try the Apple Berry scent sometime (I'm a sucker for apple scents), but I figured the first time I would try the classic one.

I don't actually use scented laundry detergents, but am strictly a hypoallergenic laundry detergent kind of girl, so I'll be the first to admit I don't really know what the original scent of Gain should smell like. (Of course, they've recently changed the scent, and there is a large contingent of people who hate the new scent of Original Gain). Therefore, I'm not sure the scent matches the detergent or not, but it did smell pleasant and vaguely fruity, although I couldn't put my finger on exactly what it was supposed to smell like.

I will tell you though, if you're looking for a strong scent, this is not the soap for you. Although it smells nice in the bottle not much scent lingers while you're actually standing at the sink washing your dishes.

I didn't buy Gain dish soap just to sniff it though, so what I was most interested in was how it worked to clean dishes.

I like a thick dishwashing soap, and Gain dish detergent did not disappoint me. It was not runny at all, but my husband complained that the dispenser hole at the top of the bottle was a bit big, which meant too much came out too quickly. Since I bought the mini bottle I don't know if that is just a problem with this little bottle or would also be a problem with the larger version as well.

It worked well for cleaning my dishes, and cut grease on pots and pans as you would expect dish soap to do.

It met my standards, but didn't exceed them. Frankly, it worked about the same as Ajax dish soap, which is significantly less expensive.

For people that like fun scents though, and are looking for a competitor for Dawn dish soap which more and more people are complaining to me causes their dish rags and sponges to stink this may be it.

Taylor says: Here are links to buy this or related products. If you make a purchase I receive a small commission which helps support this site and my family.


I used to see Gain dish detergent at the dollar stores, where you could buy a big bottle for a dollar, but I'm now starting to see it less at such stores and more in regular stores, and the prices are creeping up as you would expect a name brand to do. Soon I'm afraid it will get as expensive as Dawn (both of which are made by Procter & Gamble).

This brand of dish soap appears to be getting pretty popular, even though it is relatively new to the market. Therefore, I'd love to hear from even more people who've tried it, in any of the scents, sharing how it has worked for you and your thoughts on it.

You can share your share your dishwashing soap review here for this or any other brand, or you can also click the link to read reviews from others for many brands, which have already been submitted.


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Gain Ultra Antibacterial Lemon Zest Dishwashing Liquid/Hand Soap Review

by Heidi
(Homewood, IL)

Heidi says:

I usually don't buy antibacterial dish soaps, but the Gain dishwashing liquid was on sale for a really good price at the time so I bought it and the antibacterial was the only one left on the shelf.

Would I buy it again for everyday washing? Not really. The smell is too strong and it seemed like I had to use more to get greasy jobs done. I don't like having to add more. It just bugs me.

However, there was a very specialized task this dish soap did tackle, which amazed me.

We are soon to move into my late mother's house, which needed a lot of work and cleaning.

She had a vermin infestation. Now with any infestation, you will find droppings everywhere.

Needless to say, I found a box of expensive glassware in the basement that was tainted with said droppings. (Ewwwwww!)

I hated the idea of tossing the glasses out though. They're really nice. I decided to wash them and see what would happen.

First, I tried using a heavy duty, multi purpose, powder detergent the pros use.

It took several washings but those glasses eventually came out clean and fresh, but it was hard on my hands. Really hard on my hands. (I can't where latex gloves. I have a lovely allergy to latex, so I'm bare handed with deep water scrubbing.)

The initial wash water also stank of detergent and droppings. Not a pleasant odor. I'm repulsed at the mere memory of it. Bluck!!!

I don't know why, but I decided to try the Gain Antibacterial dishwashing liquid.

It ended up being a breeze. The glasses left to soak in hot water with the Gain, and then washed in same water, came out clean in one wash.

Although I did wash them a second time for my own mental comfort. LOL!

On top of that, the initial wash water didn't have the stinky smell left behind from the droppings that I got from the powder detergent. The wash water smelled like the Gain.

So not only did this dishwashing liquid remove the nasty stuff, but it killed the odor too.

It's worth it to me to keep some on hand for my experience with it alone even though I won't be using it everyday.

Taylor says:

Thanks so much for sharing your review Heidi.

I'd love to hear from even more people who've used this product, in any of the scents, to tell me how it worked for you. You can share your review here.

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Did Not Care For This Dish Soap & Won't Try It Again

by Christine

I have purchased the original version of this soap before.

I did not care for it and would not and have not used it again.

It smelled good but was too thin, so you had to use more and it did not last.

It also did not clean dishes easily or very well.

In my opinion it is far less superior to Dawn dish soap, which I think is the very best one out there.

I do like the Gain detergent though, but do not buy that either because the price has been jacked up significantly over the last couple of years.

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Both Dawn & Gain Dish Soap Cause Smelly Sponges

by Chrissy
(Las Vegas, NV)

Chrissy says:

After using Palmolive dish soap for years, I wanted to try something with a different scent. (I had been buying the huge jug of Palmolive dish soap available at Costco, which only came in one scent, original green).

I had coupons and tried Dawn, which caused my sponges and hands to have the moldy smell previously mentioned by others.

I threw away the Dawn, and used some leftover Palmolive in a small bottle that we kept in our motor home. It was the antibacterial orange version, and we had no issues with it.

I saw some small bottles of Gain dish soap for less than a dollar, so I tried the original scent until I could get back to Costco.

I was unpleasantly surprised that with Gain soap, my sponge immediately started stinking again.

I checked out Gain here on this site, and learned that it is made by the same good folks who make Dawn. Perhaps they are sharing ingredients, as the result was certainly the same.

Back to Palmolive for me.

Taylor says:

Thanks for sharing your review of the Gain dish detergent Chrissy, but sorry it caused your sponges to smell.

I personally did not notice that problem when I used it, but it certainly has been a problem for many people who use Dawn, and it makes sense that Gain could also be effected, since the same company, Procter & Gamble, manufactures both products.

I'd love to hear from even more people who've used this soap, in any of the scents, telling me what they liked, or didn't, about it and why.

You can share your reviews here of this or any other brand, or read other reviews which have already been submitted.

Taylor says: Here are links to buy this or related products. If you make a purchase I receive a small commission which helps support this site and my family.

Related Pages You May Enjoy

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Comments for Both Dawn & Gain Dish Soap Cause Smelly Sponges

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comparison between Dawn and Gain
by: Marilyn

I have used Dawn and Gain dishwashing detergents, and I see no difference in them! They look so similar, that I looked to see who makes them, and discovered that Proctor & Gamble makes both of them! I figure that they come from the same formula with different fragrances added. As of right now Gain is slightly cheaper in price than Dawn. Both work well, cut grease, and leave dishes clean.

Never had a problem
by: Anonymous

I love Gain Antibacterial soap. Works better than Dawn and cost less. It definitely works better than Ajax dish soap. It lathers well and the dishes are squeaky after being washed. I cannot find Gain Antibacterial dish soap anywhere anymore. Maybe because Proctor & Gamble knows Gain works better than Dawn too. Stinky sponges comes from washing dishes with food still in them. I do not like food in my dish water, so I always rinse my dishes before I was them, and I put a little bleach in the dish water. I never have stinky sponges no matter what dish detergent I use.

Gain is not the same as Dawn
by: Larry

I've tried different scents of Gain. Although it's made by Proctor and Gamble like Dawn, the thickness is about the same, and the bottle looks similar, it's not as good as Dawn and not as sudsy. You need more to do the same job. Tricky marketing.

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