what's the difference between bio & non bio detergent?

Try smol bio and non-bio laundry capsules today!


With so many laundry detergent options available it can get confusing trying to figure out which is the best one to use when it comes to bio vs non-bio.

What’s the best detergent for stain removal? What’s the best detergent for sensitive skin? What’s the best way to clean baby clothes?

So, we’re here to answer the big questions…what is the difference between bio and non-bio detergents, and which is best for you? 

In a nutshell… the main difference between bio and non-bio detergents is the presence or absence of enzymes. But join us as we break it down!


bio laundry detergent.

Enzymes. You’ll find them in bio laundry detergent and they help to break down common stains, such as food, sweat, grass and grease. And once these stains are broken down, they are much easier to lift and wash from your clothes.

Bio detergent is best used in mid to low temperature washes (ideally between 30-40°C) as anything hotter can denature the enzymes, causing them to not work as effectively.


non bio laundry detergent.

Non-bio on the other hand, does not contain enzymes and can be more suitable for those with sensitive skin because sometimes enzymes can cause irritation.

Although non-biological detergents do not contain stain removing enzymes, they can still be great at removing stains and keeping your clothes clean and smelling fresh. You just may need to use a slightly higher temperature setting to aid with the cleaning process.


bio vs non-bio, which option is best?


If you don’t have particularly sensitive skin, and you don’t have little ones to wash for, we’d recommend our smol bio capsules

The Good Housekeeping Institute LOVED our bio capsules for their stain removal and they also contain lower chemical concentrations than the leading brands, are vegan and cruelty free and are posted through your letterbox as and when you need them.

They also work really well in lower temperature and quick washes which is better for the environment and is going to save you money!

...or non bio

If you have sensitive skin (eczema, psoriasis) or young children, we’d recommend  smol non-bio capsules. They contain far fewer chemicals than the leading brands, are vegan and cruelty free, are delivered to your door and are really gentle whilst being super effective at cleaning your clothes.

Non-bio detergents are really popular in the UK. The stain-removing enzymes in bio detergent can, rarely, cause mild irritation for those with sensitive skin, so a non-bio (which doesn’t have these enzymes) can be the better choice for those with skin sensitivities. 

Of course, our smol non-bio has been dermatologically tested too. We have many customers with contact dermatitis, eczema or psoriasis, all happily using our non-bio. They even report improvements to their skin following the swap to smol.


best for kids.

Non-bio is also really popular amongst parents with young children and babies, as it is still effective at killing germs and bacteria whilst remaining super gentle and delicate. However, if there are items that suffer heavy staining, and nobody in your family has very sensitive skin… then you might prefer the extra boost of a bio.


Luckily, at smol we offer FREE TRIALS on both bio and non-bio laundry capsules so you can try before you buy. We even have a non-bio that’s fragrance-free if you prefer! 

Try smol bio and non-bio laundry capsules today!