Tide Free And Gentle Review - Great For Relieving Laundry Allergies

by Taylor

Here is my Tide Free And Gentle laundry detergent review, since my son suffers from many allergies, including laundry allergies.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Jeanine Downie, a dermatologist. During this video interview I discussed the topic of laundry detergent allergies with her, since this is a problem my son suffers with in my own home.

The interview was sponsored by Procter & Gamble, the makers of Tide laundry detergent, so she discussed the Tide Free And Gentle detergent during the interview.

Here is the video for those of you interested.

If you noticed, within the interview itself I also discussed how we use this laundry detergent (formerly called Tide Free And Clear) within my home.

I have had good results with the detergent for my normal laundering, and also for some stains, although I have also used other products to help remove these stains sometimes.

*** Update -- I did a test to see how well this detergent works to remove some really tough stains, all by itself. It confirmed that you really do need to use some laundry stain removers with the product. You can see the before and after pictures here, for Tide as a stain remover. ***

I myself like scents in my laundry, and this detergent does not have any scents or dyes. However, these scents and dyes are what cause many people, apparently including my son, to develop laundry allergies. (Although, as I've gotten used to no-scent products,
I have noticed I tolerate strong scents less and less.)

Therefore, I now use this product for all my laundry, for everyone and everything in the home, and have really liked it.

He does not break out when I use it, but has been known to develop hives or excema when I use laundry detergent if I'm visiting someone else's house, like my Moms, for example.

I have not used any other free and clear detergents from other brands, but I suspect they would work just about as well and still not bother his allergies too much.

*** Update - I've now had the chance to review many other free and clear detergent versions over the years doing this website, and I am sure this statement is now true -- there are some much lower cost detergents available that, in my opinion work just as well and still don't have dyes or scents added. ***

I would love to hear from you regarding your experience with Tide Free And Gentle, either in the powder or liquid form. (We use the liquid, because I live in an area with very hard water.) You can share your review here, for this scent or any other version of the product, or read other reviews already submitted.

Also, if you suffer from laundry allergies yourself please share in the comments what type of either homemade or commercial laundry detergent you use which works well for you. You can share your laundry detergent review here.

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Tide Free & Gentle Is Similar To Other Enzyme Detergents In Regard To Stain Removal

by SR101 Reader

This SR101 Reader has responded to my article about uses Tide detergent as a stain remover, so if you want to know exactly the context in which she is talking about this hypoallergenic version of the detergent I would suggest reading the linked article first.

SR101 Reader says:

The test you performed with the Tide Free & Gentle on a variety of tough stains yielded the results I would expect with most enzyme detergents.

Even the instructions for using Tide indicate that you should pretreat stains by rubbing in some of it before washing.

Ideally it would be nice to not have to think about stains and just throw the clothes in the washer with this detergent and have all the stains removed.

Truthfully, the tough stains you noted, at a minimum should be pretreated with either the Tide or another enzyme pretreater before washing.

In my opinion if I needed to handle the stains you mentioned (multiple and severe) I would have presoaked them overnight with either BIZ or Oxiclean powder before even attempting to wash them.

Based on your website you are also an advocate of presoaking stains so I believe that your point in your test was to just push the limits of Tide.

Actually I am surprised that the blood, grass, and iodine came out in one wash without pretreating!

I always presoak grass and blood stains with Tide liquid and have great results. Tide has always worked well on protein type stains like blood and grass.

With that said I do like the Tide Free detergent as several members of my household have sensitive skin and no one has had an adverse reaction to this product.

For small stains I will pretreat them directly by rubbing in some Tide and letting it sit for about 10 minutes before washing.

I also use it as a presoak. It really depends on the type of stain(s) and the severity of stain(s) on the garment as to how long I presoak.

I have also used the Wisk Free detergent with decent results, i.e. no allergic reactions and good stain removal capabilities.

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Tide Free and Clear Versus Tide Free And Gentle Review

by Carrie

Carrie shared the consequences to her of Tide's recent switch from "free and clear" to Tide Free and Gentle.

Carrie says:

I used Tide Free and Clear for over a year with great results.

I have allergies to most detergents and I was OK with the original Tide Free. Once they changed it to Tide Free and Gentle I started experiencing allergies.

I started looking online and representatives from Tide claimed it was only a name change and not a product change. I found this confusing because even the ad claims that it now cleans better and how would it clean any differently with only a change in name?

I switched to Sunlight Sensitive and so far I'm OK. I even found that the ingredients for homemade laundry soap contained a lot of unwanted chemicals, so I'm not sure if I even want to take that route.

I'm also looking into brands sold by the Bulk Barn (Simply Clean) because they use alternative natural cleaning ingredients.

Taylor says:

Thanks Carrie for sharing your experiences once Tide changed from the green capped Free And Clear and changed the name to Tide Free and Gentle, with a light blue cap.

I myself use this brand (see my review above) because of my son's laundry allergies, and I personally did not notice anything when the change occurred. However, each person is different and your reaction and my son's therefore cannot be compared exactly.

I would love to hear your review of Sunlight laundry detergent, or any other laundry detergents you choose in your quest to find one that is natural and won't bother your allergies.

Here is my list of available hypoallergenic laundry detergents, in case you need to look for one for yourself or a family member.

In addition, I would love to hear any other reader's laundry reviews. You can share your reviews here, or read other reviews already submitted.

In addition, you can share what you believe is the best laundry detergent here, sharing your reviews of which ones work well (or which ones don't make the cut in your opinion).

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Agree That Free & Gentle Different Than Free & Clear

by Sherry
(Morristown, NJ)

Sherry says:

Thank you for this site!

I have been experiencing contact dermatitus for a couple of months and have finally come to the conclusion it must be the detergent.

I switched to Tide free and clear about 6 years ago when our son suffered from excema brought on by dyes and perfumes in detergent. Until I found this sight I didn't even realize Tide had changed to Free & Gentle.

No one else is having a reaction thank goodness, but I'll need to switch to something else.

Based on your reviews I'm going to try Cheer dye free and scent free, hopefully that will help! Thank you again.

Taylor says:

Glad to help Sherry.

Sorry to hear the Tide isn't working for you, but everyone is different so experimentation is sometimes necessary. As you can see from my review of Cheer I liked it, but if you still need more help finding a new scent and dye free detergent don't forget to check out the scent free laundry detergent reviews here.

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Nightmare Allergic Reaction To This "Hypoallergenic Detergent"

by Jen
(Bc )

This detergent gave me shoulder to toes and EVERYWHERE ELSE all intimate areas SEVERE ITCHY AS HELL HIVES!!

I haven't slept since I started using it and I am on all kinds of steroids and topical creams.

I am so happy I figured it out and I will NEVER use Tide again.

I have used the regular stuff my entire life. I hear All or Purex are good.

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Developed Sudden Allergy To Tide Free & Gentle

by SR101 Reader

I've been using Tide for years, and switched to Free and Gentle a couple of years ago. Until recently I've been quite happy with it. My clothes get clean and I don't itch.

A few months ago I started getting terribly itchy skin and it never occurred to me that it could be the detergent. But after I'd eliminated everything else, I decided to add vinegar to the rinse water and then to run my clothes through an extra rinse cycle.

Problem solved! I don't yet know whether it was the vinegar or the rinse cycle, so I'll have to do some more experimenting.

Bye-bye Tide.

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This Hypoallergenic Detergent Caused Hives & Worsened Asthma

by Amy
(Monroe, Ohio)

I bought this version of Tide detergent a couple months ago.

I have soap allergies so I thought buying a "free and clear" detergent was a good idea.

I have been breaking out in the worst hives cases everyday from head to toe. It also has worsened my asthma cough I get.

This detergent has been terrible for my allergies.

I am scared about what to try now. I used to use just regular Tide, but am scared to go back to it as well!

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My Child Developed Allergy To Powder Form Over Time

by Cindy
(Dallas, NC)

I've used the Tide Free and Gentle in powder form for probably close to 10 years and never had a problem.

Last summer my daughter broke out in what looked like hives and I had no idea what it could be.

Her next breakout didn't occur until 7 months later...she then had about four different incidents until finally I was able to get her to an allergist.

He felt sure it was an allergic reaction to something she was coming in contact with . . . possibly the detergent.

I was shocked to think that the free and gentle detergent I had been using for all of these years could be the problem.

After mentioning my daughter's issue with a friend of my husband, he said that their kids had gotten similar rashes with "free and clear" detergents.

He said after trying many different brands, they found that the Free and Clear Purex was the answer to their prayers. Also, not using dryer sheets.

I have washed all of my child's clothes and sheets and after a few days I can already see a great improvement. I noticed that the Purex is hypoallergenic...I don't know if that makes a difference, but thought I would mention it.

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Tide Free Causing Allergic Reactions

I've gotten a couple of comments from people sharing how Tide Free is causing them allergy problems. Fortunately I have not experienced this myself, but it appears it may be more common than I originally realized. Here's what various readers have said.

SR101 Reader says:

When I used this product I got terrible contact dermatitis. Now I'm using Ecos and the dermatitis is slowly going away.

Ravalli says:

Although Tide states there have been no ingredient changes, I have begun to notice that clothing washed in the new product (Free & Gentle) are causing an allergic reaction on my skin. I will regretfully be switching to another company's product after many years using Tide Free.

Taylor says:

Tide detergent allergies
Thanks to both commenters for sharing their opinions of this product.

I'd love to hear from even more people who have used this or any other scent free detergent, designed for allergy sufferers. You can share your laundry detergent review here for this or any other brand, telling me what you like, or don't, about it and why.

Obviously, it is not only the Tide made for people with allergies that readers are allergic to though. Instead, I've also gotten lots of reviews sharing how other versions of Tide caused them allergies as well.

Related Pages You May Enjoy

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Comments for Tide Free Causing Allergic Reactions

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allergic to this version
by: Thisnot

I have to use All Free and Clear (or store brand equivalent which is actually more expensive currently) and dryer sheets without perfumes or dyes. I was allergic to the Tide brand of hypoallergenic detergent.

by: Anonymous

I've been using ALL free and clear for years, and I decided to switch. Worst idea I ever had. I had hives for days, and couldn't stop itching. Don't use this product.

All-natural laundry soap
by: Anonymous

For those experiencing allergies try an all natural one like Seventh Generation or Full Circle.

I can relate
by: Andrea

I came here to find out if the free and gentle Tide was safe, since regular Tide is a nightmare with my allergies. I figured I'd try to get my hands on a sample and spot test on my arm, I think I'll skip it now. I've used All Free and Clear and Purex Free and Clear for years with no problems. I can also use the Arm and Hammer Free detergent.

My skin is so allergy prone I react to Dreft. No kidding. As a general rule, if I've heard of more than five people anywhere having a reaction to something, it doesn't come in my house.

I can't use dryer sheets, scented ones especially, but it's safer to skip them all together. Last summer my husband ran a regular dryer sheet through an empty dryer and cleaned out the inside with vinegar after he was done, apparently he'd heard it would freshen the dryer (thanks mother in law) and I had head to toe hives for a month that required three rounds of prednisone to stop and two different antihistamines to function in the meantime.

My clothes hadn't even gone through the dryer yet, nothing had, just the scent going through the air in my house was enough to mess me up all summer.

Difference between formulation for HE and non-HE versions
by: Tammy

I just used the Tide Free and Gentle. 3 rinses and put a pair of pants on. Within 5 minutes my legs were burning like crazy and turning red. I do not have an HE washer and used very very little soap. And this still happened. I definitely think this is different from the free and CLEAR.

The HE soap of the free and gentle does not effect me that much. Both bottles say free and gentle. I looked up the ingredients to cross check it and there are different ingredients in the HE vs Non HE. They need to bring back the FREE and CLEAR. The free and gentle I don't ever want to come in contact with that again!!!

Allergic to Tide so also allergic to this "hypoallergenic" version
by: Gregory

I am badly allergic to original Tide but I decided to try this one because the store was out of the All Free & Clear I have used for ages. This Tide product cleans well but it gave me a severe rash and itchiness all over. Name a part and it itches. I regret buying this detergent. If you are allergic to Tide like me please avoid this.

No more itching or rashes!
by: Lisa

I have been suffering from allergic reaction to laundry detergents and fabric softeners for over one year. I have tried numerous products which are supposed to be gentle on skin, but found no relief UNTIL I rewashed all my clothes, towels and sheets in Tide Free & Gentle. After only 2 days my itching and burning skin was much improved, and now that it is 5 days later my skin finally feels back to normal. No itching, burning or rash. I would HIGHLY recommend this product if you are suffering from skin allergies due to laundry detergents.

Started getting hives
by: Beth Black

I used the Tide free and clear for a long time with no problem. I understand that the manufacturer says there was no formula change along with the name change but I beg to differ. I never even noticed the name change but after suffering with hives from an unknown source for months I noticed they were worse right after getting dressed. I decided to try a different detergent and voila hives gone!

Return of the Rash!
by: Anonymous

About 4 years ago I discovered the Tide HE was giving me a rash. I learned this was NOT uncommon. We switched from Tide. Rash disappeared. No problems until my wife washed some clothes in Tide "Hypoallergenic". It's taken a few cycles but I am developing the same rash again. Looks like a heat rash but it is definitely a reaction to the Tide again, even though it's purported to be "gentle," whatever that means. I read somewhere that it can take as many as a dozen rinse cycles to rid your washing machine of the irritating TIDE residue. Apparently the super concentrated TIDE formula (HE) is a skin irritant to many. Tide cleans well, but we've got to switch to another product ASAP.

Tide Simply Clean & Sensitive
by: Fred

I just bought a brand new bottle of this (66 Loads) and I break out all over my legs and inner thighs!!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW? OMG! I normally use regular Gain or Tide with Febreze and I'm good! First time I switch to save a few bucks I go to the doctor with a rashy itchiness all over my legs! I just can't believe this!

by: Anonymous

My only problem with Tide Free is that residue remains on the cloths after washing no matter how little I use. I see it only on the dark clothes but I am sure I just can't see it on the lights. Very annoying to say the least.

I still smell perfume
by: Susan

I smell perfume in Tide Gentle and have a rash on my skin from using it! I would stay clear of any Tide products and go to something more natural and definitely perfume free which they claim to be. I smell perfume still in the Tide Gentle!

I itched from head to toe
by: Anonymous

I've never had an allergic reaction to anything in my life! My wife bought Tide Free and Gentle and washed out bed sheets and clothes. That night I woke up with a rash that covered my entire body. I jumped in the shower and went to the DR first thing in the morning. Rash and never ending itching lasted for days! I switched back to regular Tide, no more problems.

liquid and pods have worked well for me
by: Nancy

It has worked very well for me and my allergies. It works well for most stains but there are some that need additional stain fighters.

They must have changed it
by: Anonymous

A terrible product since they changed it. I have had hives and skin irritation for 4 months. Never using it again.

It was great before.

mild case of hives
by: Anonymous

I am allergic to the original Tide, so I thought I could use the free & clear version.....well....NO. I'm currently experiencing a mild case of hives.

I feel your itch!
by: Susan

I've always been able to use just about any laundry detergent although I kind of stick to one brand. My new boyfriend uses tide free & Clear. Even though I have had troubles with regular tide in the past I figured free and clear would be fine. WRONG! I broke out all along my right side starting with my hand on my arm and down my leg like nikole who had hives on her stretch marks I have them on the scar from my knee replacement. This is the side I sleep on I did break out in other places but because most of the rubbing so-to-speak was on the sleeping side it was pretty uncomfortable.... For the first time in years I was taking allergy medication daily I got some cortisone topical cream which didn't even touch the hives they were so bad I ended up having to go to the doctor who gave me a steroidal cream. She agreed that it was clearly the laundry detergent and now I have to go shopping for something else that hopefully won't make me break out either. Boyfriend feels horrible even though it wasn't his fault for using a national brand which does clean well just gives me the hives....

reaction to free and gentle, not original
by: Anonymous

I just woke up this morning with the same welts all over my hips and stomach and breast where sports bra is worn. Just tried this tide and I for sure now know it’s this. I was scared to death something was living in my bed eating me lol!
I will go back to the original tide that I have never had any problems with.

by: Stephanie

Fist time using, covered in rash, hands, arms, legs! Unable to sleep. Unbearable itchiness!

by: Anonymous

Really unclear as to the difference in Tide products now. What is difference in Tide Simply Free & Sensitive & that Sensitive in the all white container that is much more expensive? I've used Tide for years but have sensitive skin so always used the white bottle sensitive but it's gotten way too expensive.

Amazing for seasonal allergies
by: Anonymous

This is literally the BEST detergent on the market for people suffering from seasonal allergies. My children and I give this Tide Free and Gentle an A++++++ rating!

Tide oxi free and clear
by: Anonymous

I purchase tide oxi free and clear about a week ago. My children face broke out bad with big red welts. They skin was itching and burning feeling. This is ridiculous this product supposed to be for sensitive skin.

If you can smell it, it is still there
by: Anonymous

One grandson was diagnosed, as a baby, with psoriasis. My daughter in law was so upset, fearing that her son was going to have problems requiring cortisone based meds all his life. I asked her if she used baby products, soaps & detergents, that she could still smell after rinsing. Everybody loves a baby that smells sweet, huh? I told her that if she could smell the scent of it on his skin, then it was still on his skin. Thus I suggested using neutrogena soap and rinsing him very well, then check to see if she could smell it on him afterward. She did and she could not smell anything. I said your baby smells sweet on his own when he is clean, so don’t use fragrances, and use only soap that leaves no scent behind.

It is not just the scent but the left-behind soap or detergent residue (that contains the scent) that can cause skin rashes.

In some of the "scent free" detergents and soaps, chemicals are STILL left in the fabrics even if you cannot smell them. Something that rinses away completely is needed. Meanwhile vinegar in the rinse cycle will take away most detergent residue. I just pour some in the fabric softener dispenser. Detergents are alkali, vinegar is mild acid is why that works.

Grandson does not have psoriasis at all, just sensitive skin, and no longer gets itchy rashes: he wasn’t allergic to the scents, he was allergic to soap residue/ alkaline pH. The scent was merely a clear indication that soap residue was left behind in his laundry and on his skin after his bath. Interestingly scented baby lotions did not cause rashes on him!

In any case, get the pH back to neutral and see if that helps.

Nightmare allergic reaction
by: Anonymous

Developed a nightmare allergic reaction to Tide Free & Gentle that spiked blood pressure, caused rashes, caused flaking and peeling skin, and watery & inflamed eyes. Took a while to determine cause. Six months after identifying and withdrawing product from use, my system is still calming down. Hypoallergenic my foot! They shouldn't be allowed to use any chemical that causes this many problems.

by: Anonymous

I just want to start off by saying that I have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, so my allergy system is crazy wonked and I'm allergic to the weirdest things.

I have tried nearly every mainstream commercial laundry detergent, and either get hives or contact dermatitis with every brand. Other than the Tide allergy brand, and I've been using it for years now. Up until about maybe six months ago or so. Literally every place my clothes touched turned BRIGHT RED. And places of high contact such as my hips, inner thighs and arm pit area, were BLEEDING after a couple of hours.

My mom ordered me some Norwex detergent and I've been fine since.

Later, I saw a post on Facebook that they re-branded their product. Tide claims that the formula hasn't changed, but clearly that's not true. Lying about anything that goes on someone's skin is wrong, but for a hypoallergenic product? Should be criminal.

by: Anonymous

I’ve always used All Free and Clear with no issue but decided to give Tide Free and Gentle a try. It’s a more expensive brand and I thought it would be better. Didn’t think there would be an issue but that turned out to be a huge mistake. I started breaking out in hives everywhere. I’m itchy all the time. I can’t stop scratching, even in my sleep, so I now I don’t sleep anymore. I have to go see a doctor and it could take months to treat. Do not buy!

Hives after Tide free and gentle
by: Amanda

I went out of town and my mom was at my house taking care of my kids. She bought the tide free and gentle and washed my clothes, towels and sheets while I was gone. I came home and couldn’t figure out why I was getting hives all over my abdomen and was so itchy. Was worse after getting out of the shower…she washed my towels as well. I normally use all free and clear and have no reaction.

Terrible Itches
by: Anonymous

I recently started using the Tide free detergent instead of my usual All free and clear and my gosh I have never itched so much in my life. Until I read all these posts I wasn't sure it was the detergent but now I am positive. Has the company looked into this issue? I thought I had some type of poison ivy or poison oak or something as it itched that bad. No more Tide for me!

Gone completely DIY for cleaners
by: Anonymous

When my kids were young I learned they had sensitive skin I used Purex, but when we moved to Florida and had hard water and they were sweating a lot more than they used to it did not cut the mustard so I tried one last detergent that I never had the money for before and that was Tide, and it did not bother my kids skin.

I went over 15 years switched to front load and back to top load machines and then all of a sudden my son came down with a bad case of bronchitis we could not get rid of so after a month we were sent to a pulmonologist he was diagnosed with allergies and asthma. I started doing research and learned laundry detergents and softeners including hand bacterial soaps and wipes and many other commercial household cleaners have a four ingredient compound that is common to cause allergy and/or asthma onset in late teens early adulthood. I had already started trying to use natural ingredients for cleaners but my hubby was not very cooperative who helps with a lot of cleaning and hates the smell of vinegar but with this diagnosis and finding is now more cooperative and I am finding more without vinegar but can’t 100% do without since it is a fabric softener, stain remover, whitener and disinfectant. But I make my laundry detergent, softener and reusable softener sheets and essential oil for diffusers, smelling pots and plugins and add EO to cleaning fluids specifically the breathe ease and good smelling ones and it is making a huge difference. I am not 100% there yet it takes time to make the switch and get a family of 6 used to a new way of cleaning and making the products instead of just buying. Easier on the wallet and on the body.

But for those how don’t have the time to make Tide is the best for sensitive skin, an extra rinse is a must but not needed with the DIY detergents.

terrible hives
by: Anonymous

I have never used a free and clear detergent before but thought I would try it. Since using it I have had terrible hives. After reading these reviews I am sure it is the detergent as I have not changed anything else.

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