Use too little detergent and your laundry might not get clean; too much can leave residue on your clothes. But hard-to-read caps can make measuring a pain. So Consumer Reports was happy to see Target Up & Up’s clear, well-marked cap. But when we followed the dosing directions and did the math, we were less impressed.
Using the recommended amount, the 150-ounce container of Target Up & Up liquid detergent would only wash about 70 loads, not the 96 claimed on its label. For the typical household, that can cost an extra $ 30 per year.
We contacted the company about the questionable math. They thanked us for bringing the issue to their attention and said that the current dosing directions, which say to fill the laundry cap to level 4, are incorrect. Target said it will be “promptly updating” the label in the coming weeks and use the new label going forward. Until then, if you want to get 96 loads, fill the laundry cap to the second line, which is what we did when we tested the detergent.
In our laundry detergent tests, Up & Up was very good at removing grass stains but it didn’t clean well enough overall for us to recommend it. We found better and cheaper choices, including Member's Mark Ultimate Clean liquid sold at Sam’s club, which did make our list of top laundry detergent picks.
If you prefer powder, our top-rated detergent is Tide Ultra plus Bleach Vivid White + Bright HE. But for less than half as much, you can get our CR Best Buy, Kirkland Signature Ultra Clean powder sold at Costco.
–Celia Kuperszmid Lehrman
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