Which detergent is best for Washing Machine?



When you speak of washing powders in India, the first image that comes to mind is that of the cute little girl dancing to the tune of

“Washing Powder Nirma, Doodh Si Safedi……..Sabki Pasand Nirma.”

However, do you know that Nirma was not the first washing powder to be launched in India? The honour goes to Surf. Surprisingly, Surf was initially launched in Pakistan in 1948. It made its foray into the Indian market in the year 1959.

Which is the best washing powder in India?

How can you answer this question? India is a land of extreme diversity. Even inside a joint family, you see one daughter-in-law using Surf while the other one uses Ariel.

Under such circumstances, it would not be right on our part to rate these washing powders and detergents from 10 to 1 or whatever.

We shall adopt a different yardstick. Let us treat this as a question-answer session. This will appeal to a lot of people because it addresses the principal issues they encounter while using washing powders.

Can I use a front loader washing powder in a top load washing machine?

At a first glance, your reaction should be “Why not”? However, understand that top loader detergents have the capacity to produce more foam or lather as compared to the front loader detergents.

Hence, if your husband has bought the top loader washing machine detergent, do not berate the poor fellow. Use half the quantity of soap in your front load machine. This is a typical Indian ‘jugaad’.

What is the difference between Surf Excel Matic top load detergents and front-load detergents?

The front-loading machines require less water as compared to the top-load machines. Hence, the front load detergents have fewer suds so as to form less lather.

The top-loading machines need more lather. Hence, the normal detergents work well in such machines.

The Surf Excel Matic top load detergent has more suds whereas the front load detergent use low suds high-efficiency formula.

Can I use normal detergent in a front loading machine?

Ideally speaking you should not. This is because the normal detergent has the capacity to generate more foam. This is ideal for top loading machines.

The front-loading machines use less water. Hence, the normal detergent would end up as a high concentration powder that can damage the clothes and the machine. Hence, you should use High-Efficiency detergent powder in the front loading washing machine.

Which is the best detergent for a front load washing machine?

One can say that Surf Excel Matic for front load is the best detergent to use in a front-loading washing machine.

This is because this detergent works on a low suds high-efficiency formula.

This produces less lather and is perfect for use in machines that require less quantity of water.

Which is the best washing powder for a fully automatic washing machine?

You have a variety of washing powders in the market such as Surf Excel, Ariel, Rin, etc.

Out of these powders, Ariel Matic should be the best for your fully automatic washing machines. This detergent has fine granules that can penetrate into the fibers and clean the dirt from all parts of your clothes. Specially designed for fully automatic machines,

Ariel Matic leaves a pleasant smell and is very soft on your hands. You will find the heat when you dissolve Surf or Rin in your hand.

Which is the Ideal Detergent for a top load washing machine?

There is a tough competition for the No 1 spot in this category between Ariel and Surf Excel. However, Ariel with its excellent stain removal qualities holds the upper hand, but only slightly.

You have different variants of Ariel like Ariel Matic, Ariel Oxy Blue, and Ariel Oxy blue Ultramatic and so on. You have Ariel available as a liquid detergent as well. Surf Excel is also available as a liquid detergent.

However, the benefit of using Ariel is that you can use fewer fabric softeners. Hence, Ariel should be the preferred choice. Maybe, your co-sister might not agree, but who cares a damn about her?

What detergent is suitable for coloured and white clothes?

As far as coloured clothes are concerned, Surf Excel Matic steals a march over the others. Both the top loading and front loading types are excellent for washing coloured clothes. The basic advantage of using Surf is that it dissolves completely in water unlike other detergents. Ariel is also good in this aspect.

When it comes to washing white clothes, Tide detergent powder is better than the others because of the presence of bleach in them. Rin or Surf can cause blue deposits on these white clothes. Hence, a majority of women prefer Tide to any other detergent.

People living in smaller towns especially in the western part of India like Gujarat and Maharashtra still prefer to use Nirma washing powder.

Which is the right choice of detergent for washing baby clothes?

Babies have tender skin. Hence, you need a gentle washing powder to wash baby clothes. You get special baby washing powders in the market. One of the best available online is Mee Mee Mild Baby Liquid Laundry Detergent. You cannot get a gentler wash than this detergent.


We have thus seen a variety of washing powders available in the Indian market. As of date, Surf Excel rules the Indian market with Ariel a shade behind. The other washing powders like Rin, Nirma, Fena, and Ghadi, etc lag behind in popularity.

Chaithanya Vanjari
Chaithanya Vanjari
I'm Chaithanya Vanjari, the Creator and Editor-in-Chief at KitchenArena. With a decade of experience in evaluating large appliances like air conditioners, washing machines, refrigerators, and various small home devices, I possess the technical expertise needed to thoroughly review and understand the operational complexities of these appliances.


  1. True that IFB service provider insist on liquid. I am also a same user. We have experienced that powder is best to clean the clothes and you have a judgement to use according to the condition of clothes.

  2. I have been using the Surf Excel matic powder for my clothes in my Front load washing machine for last 1 year now and I can say without any hesitation that this special Front load powder does not wash away any stains on my kids dresses.
    Aa a result, i am forced to switch to regular surf Excel powder.

  3. It’s the best actually but not available everywhere as the pink coloured powder is very soft and gentle on the clothes but also equally hard on the stains and germs. I really miss the powder

  4. You can use Ariel Matic liquid det. for ur fully auto machine.
    I have also Whirlpool Freshcare fully auto machine and I am using the Ariel Matic liquid det. for last 7 months and getting best results
    Now think about one thing that Whirlpool is not making any detergent hence we can use any thing for the wash, where ever IFB have its own brand det. so that they will promote U for their own product,
    Think once about it and take ur own decision.

  5. I have IFB front load fully automatic washing machine. The IFB technicians highly recommend IFB essential liquid detergent to be used in this washing machine. But its costly than Ariel or Surf Excel liquid detergent. What do you suggest?
    And technicians also recommend to use liquid detergent only in fully automatic washing machine. What do you say?

  6. Thank you kitchen arena. I use Rin for my washing purposes.
    How else do you support housewives, homemakers? Thanks a lot my Hindustan Unilever.


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