Kirkland Brand Laundry Soap (From Costco) Review - Free & Clear Scent

by Diane

Diane has shared her Kirkland brand laundry soap review, from Costco.

Diane says:

I purchased the Kirkland brand (Costco's signature brand) of Free and Clear Laundry detergent.

I chose to purchase this product based 1) on my experience with other Kirkland brand products and 2) on the cost associated with this product. The price was considerably cheaper when you based it on a per load basis.

I don't like the fact that it is more cost up front due to the size of the bottle, but it is worth it due to the cost per load.

I like this detergent because it does a great job of getting smells and stains out of all my clothes except my family's gym clothes.

For some reason this detergent does not work well with items that are extra smelly and sweaty. I had to purchase a more expensive brand just to wash our gym clothes.

Both my daughter and I have sensitive skin so it is important to me use a detergent that will not irritate our skin. I have found that this product lives up to this expectation.

If cost were not a factor, I think I would still purchase this product. It works just as well as name brand products and I can buy it in a larger quantity at a time. This is important to me because
I don't have time to constantly run to the store because I ran out of detergent and with having children, I have to do a lot of laundry.

Taylor says:

Thanks Diane for sharing your review of Kirkland brand laundry soap.

I know what you mean about kids and an abundance of laundry. They seem to dirty clothes very quickly, don't they?

It is harder to find a hypoallergenic laundry detergent that is a generic or store brand version that you can feel confident about, so I'm glad you've shared your experiences with me.

Has anyone else used Costco's laundry detergent? If so, please share your laundry detergent review here, to tell me what you think about it. (You can also share reviews of other brands too!)

***Update 1: Make sure you read the rest of the reviews I have collected since although this first one was positive, many others are not. While obviously some people like it, this version, although it is marketed as hypoallergenic, caused allergic reactions in at least some people, as they reported below, so make sure to read everything before choosing this store brand of detergent!***

***Update 2: In addition, one reader has shared how her dogs broke into this detergent, and were made ill. You can read her story here, which serves as a safety lesson for all of us about storing our laundry products! ***End Update

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Kirkland Free & Clear Ultra Laundry Detergent Caused Allergic Reaction

by SR101 Reader

An SR101 Reader shared her experience with Kirkland Free & Clear Ultra laundry detergent.

SR101 Reader says:

I broke out in a rash which covered most of my body after wearing PJ's washed in this product.

We are taking the product back for a refund and I am awaiting, with interest, Costco's response to a letter that I wrote to them in this regard.

Taylor says:

I'm sorry to hear you had an allergic reaction to this laundry detergent. That can be very uncomfortable, and also frustrating since it is advertised as hypoallergenic. Unfortunately, even free and clear versions of detergents may cause some people to have allergic reactions, since everyone's exact laundry detergent allergy is different.

Has anyone else used this product and had problems with it?

I would love to hear even more reviews of it, good or bad.

You can share your laundry detergent review here, for this or any other brand, sharing how it worked for you.

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Kirkland Free & Clear Ultra Gave Me A Rash Too

by Nick M

In response to the previous SR101 reader's experience Nick wrote in to share what happened when he used this detergent.

Nick says:

I have the Kirkland Free and Clear Ultra, but believe this detergent gave me rashes as well. I have it all over. I've tied it back to this detergent.

Taylor says:

Thanks for sharing your experience Nick, and I hope you begin to feel better soon.

Well, now that is two people who've said this detergent, which is supposed to be hypoallergenic, didn't work well for them in this department.

I would love to hear from even more readers, sharing their experiences with this detergent, good or bad.

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Yet Another Allergic Reaction From Kirkland Free and Clear

by Than
(South Pasadena, CA)

After reading the other reviews and experiences above Than wrote in to share his experience too.

Than says:

Just wanted to chime in that I also got a severe rash after using this laundry detergent. We threw the bottle away afterwards and went back to Tide and everything cleared up.

A week ago my blessed Mother-in-Law decided to do my laundry. Two days later an awful rash developed. We asked her what detergent she used and sure enough Kirkland Free and Clear was the culprit.

I've never had any allergic reaction to any detergent, but this supposedly hypoallergenic detergent is anything but for me.

Taylor says:

Thanks Than for sharing your experience with Kirland Free & Clear, although I'm sorry this happened to you.

It is especially frustrating, I know, because it is supposed to be hypoallergenic. I guess it goes to show we all have different sensitivities, so we just have to be careful with what we use that will go close to our skin, like laundry detergents and other laundry supplies.

I would love to hear even more reviews and opinions about this detergent, good or bad. You can share your experience here.

***Update: Another reader has shared her experience with this detergent with me briefly. She says:
My daughter and I both have bad rashes on our faces, we are very fair skinned. I had to go to skin doctor - I am going back to Tide.

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I Will Never Use Free & Clear Ultra Again

by Shavonne

Shavonne says:

My fiancee and I grabbed this trying to save a few bucks, since we are both on a very limited income.

At first it was fine, but after about a week and a half I started noticing that I was becoming increasingly more itchy, as was my fiancee.

After about 3 weeks I had to start taking a benedryl to stop the itching and just last night my back broke out in neck to lower back hives and that is when we figured it was the the laundry soap, especially after I read all the reviews on this page and others.

From now on I will not be using any Kirkland brand products. This has soured me completely.

Taylor says:

Shavonne, sorry to hear about your experience, and I hope you and your fiancé feel better soon.

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Kirkland Ultra Clean Free And Clear Is Not "Improved" If It Does This!

by Michelle
(San Jose, CA)

Michelle says:

Recently my entire family started itching, especially on our backs.

My husband suffers from allergies so we always get the free and clear detergent.

We had never had any problem before, but finally narrowed it down to our Kirkland detergent.

My husband said to double check to be sure I got the right one.

That's when I noticed the bottle said IMPROVED formula. That has got to be the problem!

We are going back to Tide.

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Used Happily For Two Years But Now Giving Me Bad Rash

by Marilyn

Marilyn says:

This has been my first choice for laundry for more than two years because it cleans great and has a great price AND had never caused any type of allergy reaction.

However, I bought a new bottle about two weeks ago and now I have a growing VERY itchy rash over most of my body and can find no explenation.

I read that some people become reactive to Oxyclean so I washed my bed linens and pjs twice in Free and Clear and it just gets worse.

I see a dermatologist soon so and will use some other deterget. Any suggestions?

Taylor says:

Sorry to hear this detergent has been giving you allergies. This is especially exasperating because it is supposed to be hypoallergenic.

I have a list of free and clear detergents here that you can check out to see if you can find a new variety that will hopefully work better for you. Good luck!

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Mine & My Husband's First Reaction To Laundry Soap From This Brand

by Lisa

Lisa says:

About a week or so into using this brand for the first time I was having skin reactions.

Then, tonight my husband said all the talk of itching was making him want to itch, and when he took his pants and boxers off it revealed the same red inflamed lines on his skin where the waistband had presssd against his skin.

It has me waking up in the middle of the night, itchy skin and burning red marks where clothes were pressed firmly on happy to have figured it out!!!

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Used For Years Without Problems Until New Looking Bottle

by SR101 Reader

I have sensitive skin, thank you psoriasis, and have used the Kirkland Free & clear for YEARS without a problem.

The last bottle we bought had a different look to the bottle but I figured it was just a new look.

I didn't think any more about it until I broke out in a rash in a very private area.

So not cool and very uncomfortable/awkard.

It took me a week or so once the rash came out and trying to think of anything different in the wash until I remembered the bottle was different.

Guess I will be going commando for a while and am heading to the grocery store tonight to buy some other brands of detergent.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Costco but will absolutely never buy this again.

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Don't Even Think About Using It For Toddlers Or Babies

by John

My son is 3 1/2 years old. We've been fighting eczema for 3 years.

I never thought of this detergent because of it being "free and clear". WRONG.

It finally hit me reading on a site that claims its going to be the detergent if diaper area is great but everything else is awful.

24 hours after washing with Borax from Target the "eczema" is gone 50% so I KNOW now it's this detergent.

I plan on making a video with not only the $1000 in lotions and crap I put on counter for a pic but the rash area vs diaper area. It's very easy to see.

Just rewashing the clothes now leaves a detergent scum on the washing agitator.

Be careful everyone this isn't what everyone thinks it is.

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Kirkland Free & Clear Laundry Soap Gave Me The Worst Rash EVER

by Penny

It seems, unfortunately, I keep getting stories from readers sharing their bad experiences with this laundry detergent which is supposed to be hypoallergenic. The latest is from Penny.

Penny says:

I tried the Kirkland Free and Clear laundry soap and holy geez I broke out in a HORRIBLE rash.

I didn't even think of the possibility that it could be the laundry soap because I've never had a reaction to laundry soap before. I spent 3 nights awake scratching before I finally realized that it was the laundry soap causing the problem.

It really was awful. Back to Tide Free and Clear for me.

I would like to say though, overall I have been happy with Kirkland products.

Taylor says:

Penny, I'm sorry to hear about your problems with this product. It definitely sounds like a laundry detergent allergy to me. I hope you start feeling better soon.

Based on all these bad reactions to this detergent I am updating my hypoallergenic laundry detergent page to warn against using this particular brand -- it seems to give too many sensitive skinned people bad reactions. That's too bad since it is a lower cost detergent, and it is often hard to find lower cost varieties that are scent free.

Does anyone else have another detergent they'd like to recommend that is both low cost and scent free? If so, you can nominate what you think is the best laundry detergent here.

Related Links At Stain Removal 101

{A-M} Laundry Detergent Reviews: Which Is Best?

Kirkland Environmentally Friendly Laundry Detergent Reviews

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Comments for Kirkland Free & Clear Laundry Soap Gave Me The Worst Rash EVER

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Itchy in Canada
by: Anonymous

OMG so this could be the problem I'm having. Rash on face and hands. I have to take allergy pills. I'm wondering if this product is made from plant extract?

rashes upon rashes!
by: "Substance X" Victim

I had this problem too, and to get rid of it was basically washing everything TEN times, since nothing else worked. No bleach, no vinegar etc.

Product has changed
by: itchy and red

Used for several years. Now as other said bottle changed so did product.

Clothes now come out hard and rough; whites darken over many months.

Biggest problem is rash now.

If allergy to plants watch out for plant based products vs animal oil products.

Was a fantastic product originally. If Costco buyers even cared to test this product they should have caught it going so bad.

Labels on products have no real standard. Hypoallergenic in one product may be not in another for you.

Term like environmentally friendly has so many meanings when its a manufacture stating the label contents.

Now there is just so many environmentally and healthy products that do a terrible job and many have become the new cash cow for retailers as people looking for healthy choices.

If only the good products would bubble up through the Internet to be easily found.

I don't want to return to the big name chemical companies products that that I no longer trust with my health.

But What To Use Next?

Kirkland Scratch & Itch yourself crazy laundry detergent
by: Anonymous

This product has me going insane from itching. I have a rash on the top of my hips, my ankles, elbows and bumps all over my fingers. It's awful. I'm taking it back, but the refund isn't going to cover my suffering or the expenses to wash everything again. What a nightmare.

Thanks for your post.

OMG! This was the problem all along.
by: Frustrated Momma

I have been at the ER twice this weekend with my 17 year old man sized son. He was complaining about itching Friday since he was at his dads. It started on Thursday night but by Friday he had a full blown rash of hives all over. They would spread to different parts of his body and then clear up a little and flare up somewhere else. Saturday, it was so bad, I took him to the ER for the pain and itching. 5'10", 250lbs man boy practically in tears over this. The doctors did the typical run down of what he ingested, any changes to detergents, lotions, soaps, etc. Nothing. We were baffled. He got a benadryl shot as well as a steroid. We went to get his scripts and went home. Sunday he was okay for most of the morning but then by the afternoon/evening it was worse, even burning with urination. Back to the ER we go. He got a benadryl iv and was almost 90% better. He put his house slippers back on to walk to the bathroom and instantly his feet were itchy. Very frustrating. It wasn't until this morning that it dawned on me that although I've always used ALL Free and Clear, last time I was at Costco, I got the Kirkland brand. He did laundry Thursday morning before he left to his dads house and of course that is when the issues started. I decided to google it and here we are.

I will never again deviate from the ALL Free and Clear! This was a horrific experience. Poor kid.

This detergent sent me to the ER 4 times
by: Isolde

After reading the other posts I now know what has caused my horrible rash. Thank you to everyone who shared their similar experiences.I have had an extremely miserable rash that has stumped 4 ER doctors and one dermatologist. I broke out all over my entire body except for my face and private parts. This rash was raised and oozed. The itching and burning was so severe that they took one look at me in the ER and saw me immediately. They tried 3 different antibiotics and steroids, but nothing worked. Finally, a dermatologist gave me fixed it with an anti-fungal medicine and strict instructions to stay in bed for 5 weeks. We stopped it, but couldn't figure out the cause. Now I know. I am so angry that this product had me suffering for over 6 months, not to mention about $10,000 in hospital visits. Please don't use this product.

Rash and itch from this detergent
by: Anonymous

I too have had problems with this detergent. I have an itchy rash very similar to a previous experience with a different detergent. It has taken me a few weeks to narrow it down to the Kirkland Free and Clear and I am currently rewashing all of my clothes in another brand.

Red skin outbreaks
by: Anonymous

Thanks to all who have posted about this. I have had the same red breakouts as others have described, and I too had just begun using this laundry detergent. Each day I am worse. Taking it back today!!!!

got a rash
by: Bill

I just tried this Kirkland Ultra Free and Clear and got a rash on the top half of my body. I have never been allergic to anything but this was the only item + Kirkland's Ultra Premium Fabric Softener that I have bought new in the past few weeks. Thought I would give them a try but will be returning both and going back to Shaklee unscented detergent or Tide's free of scent and perfumes. Probably will not try it again.

Itchy rash all over
by: Anonymous

Used this detergent and have an all over body rash that itches and hurts. Had to go to doctor. I have always used Free and Clear products and never had this happen before.

Kirkland signature HE LIQUID free and clear laundry detergent
by: Bob

I love our Tide Free and Clear HE Liquid laundry detergent. Came across this Kirkland Signature Free and Clear laundry detergent.
While the Kirkland signature does a good job cleaning, I have noticed it leaves rashes on our skin unlike the Tide.

After digging around I found out that the Kirkland version is made by the same company that makes All, Wisk, Snuggle and Sun products laundry detergent. The company is Sun Products.

I remember in my earlier years when I was a kid, parents always stuck with Amway Laundry detergent and when money was tight they switched to the inferior Sun Laundry detergent. Overall, good product. Would suggest to anyone with very sensitive skin issues though to recommend you stay with Tide Free and Clear. If you don't have skin sensitivity issues than the Kirkland Signature liquid Free and Clear would be fine.

Used for years
by: Anonymous

I googled ALLERGIC REACTION TO FREE AND CLEAR KIRKLAND DETERGENT and found this page. Saw that many other people are experiencing the same thing. The weird thing is that my family has used Kirkland free and clear for years. A short while back I couldn't find the detergent and then noticed the change of label. I figured it must be the same stuff.

WOW was I wrong. My legs are covered in red welts. I itch in between my fingers. It's basically where my blankets hit me when I sleep (and we had recently washed all of our bedding).

by: San Diego Itchy

My father is not really allergic to anything, but he started itching and breaking out about a week ago. My mom suspected the detergent, but after rinsing his t-shirts in water the itching continued. They started to eliminate his medicines, but I suspected that her first impression was correct. I found this page and now I know this soap was the cause. This was the first time we got this F&C soap. We love love love Costco, but this soap is evil. We are taking it back. Thank you for providing a forum to learn about other people's allergic reactions. Otherwise we would still be in the dark.

by: Melanie

When I was a child I broke out into hives so bad that I would have to stay home from school because my eyes were so swollen. It took months to figure out it was the dry laundry detergent my mom was using. I've used all kinds of liquid detergents since then and never had any problems until a week ago when I washed clothes at my parents' house, with Kirkland Free & Clear. The hives are back! My mother didn't think it was the detergent since it's "eco-friendly", but that doesn't mean non-allergenic! Now she's wondering if the skin sensitivity she and my dad have developed lately is because of it.

Broke out
by: Anonymous

I will never buy Kirkland detergent again, both my mother and I have broken out in itchy hives after using this detergent. I think the old Kirkland detergent from a few years ago was fine but this new stuff has been horrible. I am returning it as soon as possible.

Broke me out
by: Me Too

Ugh. I've been trying to figure out the rash problem too. I've been using this stuff for about 1 month. I've never had a rash before. I've even fell down a hill covered in poison ivy and didn't get a rash. A week and a half ago, I started having mild itching all over my skin. Then, in the areas where my clothing touches the most, I started getting rashes. Then, it kept expanding. My whole torso is covered as is my pelvis and parts-unknown. You do not want this rash on parts unknown. My legs and arms have it too. I just decided to google Kirkland and Rash, low and behold. Lot, and lots of comments about rashes with this stuff. A combination of Benadryl, Ibuprofen, and Calamine has helped a little. I've started re-washing all of my clothes.

Hair loss
by: Anonymous

I even think I'm having hair loss because of the extreme allergy to the product. My head had been burning since I used the product over a few months. I've lost tons of hair and have whelps on my scalp. I feel lie I want to crawl out of my skin. I have been to dermatologist, no answers. It dawned on me tonight, it's my laundry detergent!

by: Lucy

Do not buy it use this product. I have experienced the worst hives allergic reaction myself and my husband. He was in emergency hospital for 3 days and in bed rest for a week due to his allergic reaction. Even though it's less expensive detergent it's the most irritable. Everyone has different immune system and some are more sensitive than others. If your immune system is weak it can seek into your pores and make your life awful. Save your self the pain n sake and stick to your regular detergent.

Causes rash and hives
by: Anonymous

I am having a horrific allergic reaction to the Kirkland's free and clear detergent. I have been to my primary doctor, a dermatologist, and the ER (3 times!!!) before figuring out what was causing my contact dermatitis. This detergent should be pulled out of stores immediately!!! Luckily no on else in my family has been affected. I have been living with a rash over my whole body for over a month and now hives! DO NOT BUY THIS DETERGENT!!

terrible itch and rash - how long to go away???
by: Anonymous

Has caused me a terrible itch rash since before Christmas. Not even high dose of steroid creams have helped much. Didn't realize it may have been this until last week, so hoping it goes away soon. On my back, stomach, legs, feet and arms. Glad it's not summer because it looks terrible! Does anyone know how long it takes to go away???

Horrible Rash
by: Kate

My family has always used Kirkland brand "free and clear". Not anymore. I have a terrible body rash that I’ve had since Christmas. I’m 61 years old and it’s the worse illness I’ve had in my whole life. Nothing compares to the stinging misery and itchy pain of this rash. After reading all these testimonials I’m adding mine as well. Don’t buy this product. I hope I and all the other Kirkland laundry soap victims can recover quickly. I long to be "free and clear" again from this debilitating disease.

by: Anonymous

Does anyone know the ingredients in this free and clear Kirkland detergent, I think that is my source of dermatitis also.

Don't Use This Detergent
by: Anonymous

I used this detergent because part of its name is "Free and Clear." BIG mistake. I wound up with a bad case of contact dermatitis which required 1 visit to the ER for an IV of steroids and at a visit to the allergist who increased my prescription of steroids so that I will be taking it for 10 more days. I have to take Allegra, an antihistamine, for 15 days. I am uncomfortable, itchy, in pain and feel generally ill. I have NEVER had such a disastrous reaction to any other laundry detergent in my life.

Spots look like measles
by: Arizona Wife

My husband has sensitive skin and I have always used All Free. Bought the evil Costco "Free" and he developed an itch almost from the get-go. His Dr gave him a steroid cream that helps a little and I washed all of his clothes and underwear in All Free and hope that will start the healing. If you have it, take it back and complain loudly to Costco. I am going to print these reviews and deliver them when I take their awful product back.

Kirkland laundry powder free and clear
by: Patty

It took me months to figure out why my skin was so dry. I was also having body itching, peeling skin, eczema and constant stomach issues. Along with allergic asthma to this powder. This powder seems to be stronger than the powders I brought in 2016, When I pour it into my laundry just breathing it in caused me asthma and stomach pain. It took much prayer to God to find out why I couldn’t get well. This is poison to my skin and intestines. Hello tide free I’m and clear back. I’m never using Costco detergent ever again.

Make the itching STOP!
by: Kim

I purchased the hypoallergenic Kirkland HE liquid laundry soap and after using it about 15 times developed a rash on various parts of my body including my face (around my eyes, hairline, cheeks etc.) plus I developed dry cracked lips. At this point I suspected it was due to the laundry soap because I knew that it had to be because of what my face was in contact with and what would my face be in contact with for any length of time but my pillowcase.

When I Googled to see if anyone else had issues with Kirkland laundry soap (this was the only thing new/ different that I was using) I was blown away by how many other people had severe allergic reactions to this product. It make me wonder what is added to this supposedly hypoallergenic product to cause so many allergic reactions in people! I’m taking my bottle back to Costco to get a refund.

Rash that looks like measles and feels like nettles
by: Just me

I’ve used Kirkland free and clear for years. Last month we picked up a new bottle and say that the size and shape was slightly different and the label just a bit different. No new information was included. I’ve developed a rash that looks like a viral rash but am a lab scientist and had everything tested and nothing came up. I thought of the new detergent bottle and that the when I put on a newly washed shirt, the itch intensified and the rash reddens. The cleaned clothes also now feel like they have a liquid fabric softener residue. I am 2 weeks in and I haven’t touched my kids thinking it could be infectious. Well it’s for sure the detergent. I’m wearing clothes from the back of the closet that did not get washed with this new but unannounced formula. I’ve never had a reaction to anything. I can’t believe that people have suffered from this for months. Not sure if I’ll look for an older looking bottle or switch to tide. Can I use just straight vinegar and spot clean stains as needed?

Me too
by: Anonymous

I have used this product before without any problems. We started using a new bottle recently and now I'm up in the middle of the night smearing hydrocortisone cream all over myself. My son was scratching this evening as well now that I think of it. Thanks for this forum. I'm bringing this stuff back tomorrow.

will this detergent discolor my dress?
by: Anonymous

Does anyone know if can use this detergent on a color dress that I need for a party and not discolor it?

by: Anonymous

I’m wondering if anyone else has noticed their clothes getting gray and dingy after using the Costco free and clear laundry detergent. I’ve never had this problem until I started using a new bottle. Thankfully, we are not itching, but my whites are gray, and the other colors are dingy— I guess I’ll take it back and go back to Tide.

2 months dealing with rash
by: Janine

I usually buy All Clear and Free at Costco. Only to see the Costco Free and Clear hypoallergenic on sale sitting on self next to All. I figured I’d give it a try. I first noticed a red rash on my face, stopped using a face cream - but that didn’t change the rash. Then broke out with blister like rash on my back and stomach. Went to my Dr who was dumbfounded- so put me on prednisone. 2 weeks later the rash on my face and back was back. I then go to dermatologist- who said it’s something you’re coming in contact with. Again puts me on prednisone. Yesterday as I was doing laundry, I checked the ingredients- I see Methanolchorloisoline MCI which was positive on an allergy test I took years ago. But have had no problems with it lately. MCI is a preservative in cleaning products, paints and cosmetics. I was totally shocked to see this ingredient in a product listed as hypoallergenic.
I am now in the process of rewashing my entire wardrobe and linens. I have suffered for over 2 months.

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