Branch Basics Reviewjump to recipe
Today we're going to talk about one of my all-time favorite safer cleaning solutions, Branch Basics! Branch Basics has fast become THE gold standard when researching home cleaning options that work powerfully and leave a low-toxin footprint in your home.
One of our most asked questions here at Fed + Fit is “what safer cleaning products do you recommend?” If you're just getting started with a healthier lifestyle, swapping out your cleaning products can be a great low-effort place to start. Switching out your cleaning supplies will help to detox your home and you'll also see an immediate passive impact on your health and well-being, which are both amazing benefits for finding a safer cleaning option. Because one of our key missions is to de-mystify and decode all the noise when it comes to healthier options so that you don't have to, we've been through many different cleaners, including homemade. Most of the time, they either didn't perform as well as we wanted, were too expensive, or still included ingredients that we didn't feel great about. Branch Basics, on the other hand, checks all the boxes! We know, love, and trust this company and love that their product doesn't just work, it is also cost-friendly, safer, and multi-purpose to boot! Let's take you through some of the key considerations you'll want to look at when deciding if this solution is right for you and your family.
About Branch Basics
Branch basics is an incredible company on a meaningful mission. We sat down with one of the company's founders, Marilee Nelson, to get her full story on episodes 154 and 155 of the Fed + Fit Podcast. You get to hear the whole story straight from the source and it is so inspiring. We're also going to break down the story of Branch Basics here for the quick version!
Branch Basics is a company completely driven by its mission to impact the health and wellness of individuals by offering a home cleaning solution packed with the “power of pure.” Founded by Marilee Nelson, her niece Allison Evans, and Allison's best friend Kelly Love, this women-run company describes itself as having a “raging passion to inspire.” At their core, empowering people with information around the toxins in their home and cleaning products, and potentially changing their health forever is the root of what sets them apart from other companies selling similar products. Driven by this need to educate, you'll find an incredible amount of well thought out content on their website that focuses on teaching people how to decipher the home cleaning aisle at the store in a way that allows you to find products that are safer and work for you.
The real story starts after Marilee dealt with her own health diagnosis in her early years, which she healed through the concept of “food as medicine.” She was told she would never have children, and shortly after her path to healing began she had her son Douglas! Noticing that Douglas was having some delays, mood issues, and a variety of other concerns, Marilee began the process of healing her son as well. While food played a huge role in his recovery, through the process of trial, error, and setbacks, they discovered that the indoor air quality in their home was a significant factor in the return of symptoms for her son. Her son couldn't tolerate any conventional perfumes, deodorants, laundry supplies, cleaning supplies, or chemicals of any kind without a relapse.
After healing her son by pinpointing the triggers for his issues, Marilee's niece Allison found herself in a similar life-altering health crisis in her early college years. Allison and her best friend Kelly came to stay with Marilee for two months, focusing on healing through foods and cutting out all products with harmful chemicals in them, and the results were incredible! Full healing and health improvements for both women, and this is where the idea to start Branch Basics was born. From three women, immensely impacted by eliminating toxins from their day to day lives, who decided they had to share this information with the world.
Branch Basics's smaller actionable goals? To redefine clean by offering a safer solution that not only cleans up dust, dirt, and grime, but also doesn't sacrifice indoor air quality by using harsh chemicals. Their all-in-one concentrate does all of this and more, while potentially replacing 5 other home cleaning products in your house, which is an incredible feat in and of itself!
What is Branch Basics made out of?
Let's chat about what a safer option like Branch Basics actually uses to clean your home! Some of you might be thinking that you'll never find a high-performance non-toxic product to replace your go-to cleaning products. The good news? There's some really smart and creative people that have found a safer solution that both works AND keeps your home and health in mind! Taken straight from their website FAQs, here are the ingredients of the Branch Basics concentrate:
“Our plant- and mineral-based ingredient list starts with reverse osmosis purified water. Purified water is essential to the integrity of our end product. Common tap water is full of pollutants.Purified Water, Coco Glucoside (Sugar-Based Cleanser), Chamomilla Recutita (Chamomile) Flower Extract*, Decyl Glucoside (Sugar-Based Cleanser), Sodium Citrate (Food-Grade Emulsifier), Lauryl Glucoside (Sugar-Based Cleanser), Sodium Bicarbonate (Food-Grade Baking Soda), Sodium Phytate (Plant-Based Antioxidant), Sapindus Mukorossi Fruit (Soapberry) Extract*.*certified organic”
Not only are the ingredients minimal but the formula itself is designed to be hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, non-GMO, and comes in a BPA free bottle. You can learn more about their ingredients, safety, and recommendations HERE by exploring their FAQs.
How does Branch Basics work?
Honestly, we've never found a safer cleaner that works this well! AND it's so incredibly easy to use in your home. The core product is the concentrate, which is the base for all of the individual products that you will have in your home. You'll have the option to create several home-cleaning solutions simply by adding varying levels of water to provided bottles that come in your starter kit. You can create the following cleaners from one bottle of concentrate:
- All Purpose
- Streak-Free (windows/mirrors)
- Foaming Hand wash
- Laundry Detergent
Each bottle provided gives you clear instructions with fill lines showing you how much water and concentrate to add. For most solutions, it's recommended that you use distilled water so as not to leave markings, streaks, or residue on items like clothing and windows. They also have an add on product called Oxygen Boost that can be used for tough stain removal, and grout/bathroom deep-cleaning if needed. We love the simplicity of the product line up, and the multipurpose capability to everything they've created – it's really THAT easy!
How much does Branch Basics cost?
The initial cost of a bottle of Starter Kit (concentrate plus all of the bottles you'll need to make individual products) is $59, which may seem like a big jump compared to the $4 bottle of conventional cleaner that you're used to, but the cost breakdown is actually quite amazing and ends up being not only cost-saving on individual products but an overall yearly savings on cleaning supplies as well! Branch Basics has a fantastic cost analysis on their website HERE, but it's important to know that one 33 oz. bottle of Branch Basics concentrate can give you 3 bottles EACH of all-purpose ($2.90 per bottle), bathroom ($5.80 per bottle), streak-free ($0.20 per bottle), and foaming hand wash ($2.90 per bottle), and 64 loads of laundry ($0.24 per load). PLUS, orders over $39 ship free, which is an added bonus!
If you plan on using the concentrate to replace every cleaner in your home, you can typically allot for a 33 oz. bottle to last anywhere from 2-4 months. If you use it less, or just as an all-purpose cleaner for home, it will typically last much longer! You can also grab a Starter Kit + Oxygen Boost if you're looking for an even more comprehensive home cleaning system.
Branch Basics Coupon Code
We have a Branch Basics coupon code for you! We asked and they were happy to provide Fed + Fit readers with a coupon code.
Add “fedandfit15” at checkout for 15% off Starter Kits.
Our Branch Basics Review
Now that you know the WHY behind choosing safer home cleaning products and what to look for and what to avoid, let's chat about some of our honest pros and cons for Branch Basics!
- Cost – In our experience, this concentrate is truly the most cost-effective way to clean your entire house. Compared to the average bottle of the more common “natural” cleaning solutions you will find on the shelf, it not only costs less, but lasts longer, and uses ingredients you can trust.
- Effectiveness – This concentrate can tackle anything from surface-level dust and dirt to caked on, dried up food. We've seen it tackle wine stains on light-colored carpet, grass stains on kid's clothing, bathtub scum, microwave explosions, refrigerator cleanouts, and more without batting an eye. It really does WORK.
- Safety – When it comes to human safety, the adherence to high standards here is unparalleled. Dedicated to using organic, non-GMO, synthetic fragrance free, and food grade materials when possible, we rest easy knowing that Branch Basics is the gold standard for safety in cleaning products.
- Convenience – The simple fact that one order of concentrate typically lasts 2-4 months (or longer), that it can replace almost every cleaning product in our house, save us time shopping in the store, and is as easy as a simple refill when we run out, ticks all of our convenience boxes in one fell swoop!
- Environmentally Friendly – We also love their dedication to using safer packaging (BPA, PET, PETE, and phthalate-free), the fact that their solution is biodegradable and septic system friendly, and that we reduce our own plastic use by being able to use refillable bottles.
When brainstorming a list of cons for Branch Basics, we truly had a hard time really honing in on substantial negative feedback. So we decided to make a limitations list, rather than a cons list just so you could have a small list of considerations to refer to in case you were looking for the concentrate to have some maybe not-so-common uses.
- Cold Temperature Intolerance – Branch Basics concentrate will freeze in cold weather, so it's not recommended for use as a wiper fluid.
- Dwell Time – You may need to leave the solution on tough stains for an increased period of time to loosen and properly clean. For super intense cleaning, you may have to let it sit overnight.
- Mineral Free Water – The concentrate works best with mineral-free water, so if you don't have access to that, you may notice a light residue post-cleaning.
- Clothing Test – You'll always want to test first on fabric and upholstery in a hidden area prior to using for stain removal. Let it dry completely to ensure it will not affect the coloring.
- Wood Finishes – Always test first on a wood-based item that you are cleaning to ensure that the finish isn't affected.
- Oil-Based Finishes – Branch Basics should be used in weak dilutions and rinsed completely away from any oil-based finishes.
- Smudge-Free – You may need to use something like a microfiber cloth to truly clean any surface that may smudge.
- Unfinished Manufactured Wood – It's advised not to use Branch Basics on unfinished manufactured wood as it can further release toxins like formaldehyde into the environment that are present in the manufactured wood components.
Our overall impression of Branch Basics is that it is an incredible solution to the problem of finding safer cleaning solutions that not only are good for you and your home but that also WORK! Chances are you've been following along with us for years now as we helped you navigate nutrition, movement, and personal care products for optimal health and wellness. That's hard work and we tip our hats to you for being here to learn and educate yourself on these foundational efforts to lasting health! If you're like us, giving up that clean smell (re: bleachy and beachy ) was the last thing on your to-do list, and maybe even the one you resisted the most because it felt like searching for a safer needle in a greenwashed haystack. What we love most about Branch Basics is that they've done the work for us by scouring the science, formulating a product that truly works, and sharing their own personal life-changing testimonies about how a simple cleaning product switch can have a gigantic impact on the quality of life. We can't recommend this product enough if you're looking for a safer cleaning solution that works!
Remember to add “fedandfit15” at checkout for 15% off Starter Kits!