2011 VIRTUAL SCIENCE FAIR ENTRY
Using common laundry stains of coffee, make up and ketchup I set out to learn which laundry detergent, Tide, Gain or Ultra Laundry Detergent worked the best at cleaning white handkerchiefs.
Difficulty of the Project
Time Taken to Complete the Project
To determine which laundry detergent works the best at removing common stains from cotton.
- Tide Detergent
- Gain Detergent
- Ultra Laundry Detergent
- Ketchup to create a carbohydrate stain
- Lip Gloss to create an oil stain
- Coffee to create a bleachable stain
- 10 White cotton Handkerchiefs
- ½ cup measuring cup to measure coffee
- 1/8 cup measuring cup to measure ketchup
- Wetslicks #535 Lip Gloss
- Washing Machine
- People to view the results
My name is MacKenzie. My mom likes to do laundry. I watch her do laundry and she told me about stains. We talk about how to get stains out and she said, “Some detergents work better than others.”
My mom has a box of soap that she uses only when we are out of her favorite laundry detergent named Ultra Laundry Detergent.
My mom told me about different stains, bleachable (coffee), oil (lip gloss) and carbohydrate (ketchup).
Main Research Question
Which Laundry Detergent works best: Tide, Gain or Ultra Laundry Detergent?
Additional Research Questions
- Which laundry detergent works best at removing stains?
- What are stains?
- What kind of stains does my family have most?
- Will liquid detergents produce the same result?
- Would the results be different if I used different temperatures of water?
I think the Ultra Laundry Detergent will work the best.
Terms and Concepts
I had to learn about the different categories of stains. I chose carbohydrate, bleachable and oil because these are the most common stains in my family’s laundry.
- Stain A-1
- Stain A-2
- Stain A-3
- Stain B-1
- Stain B-2
- Stain B3
- Stain C-1
- Stain C-2
- Stain C-3
4. Shake out handkerchief and place one handkerchief in each glass
5. Pour ½ cup hot brewed coffee into each glass
7. Let handkerchief soak in coffee for five minutes
8. Remove handkerchiefs from coffee and wring out
9. Spread out three handkerchiefs (Labeled B)
10. Measure 1/8 cup ketchup and pour on Handkerchief B-1
11. Measure 1/8 cup ketchup and pour on handkerchief B-2
12. Measure 1/8 cup ketchup and pour on handkerchief B-3
13. Spread ketchup over handkerchiefs
14. Let Ketchup sit for 5-minutes
15. Take handkerchiefs C-1, C-2 and C-3
16. Using Wetslicks #535 Lip Gloss, apply to lips
17. Rub Lips together and kiss handkerchief C-1 and repeat ten times.
18. Using Wetslicks #535 lip gloss apply to lips
19. Rub lips together and kiss handkerchief C-2; repeat 10 times
20. Using Wetslicks #535 lip gloss apply to lips
21. Rub lips together and kiss handkerchief C-3; repeat 10 times
22. Gather handkerchiefs A-1, B-1, and C-1
23. Place all #1 Handkerchiefs into Washing Machine
24. Measure 1/3 cup of Detergent #1 and pour into washing machine
25. Close lid to washing machine and use “Soak” cycle
26. After 5-minutes of soaking, wash on HEAVY DUTY CYCLE, using cold water
27. Transfer handkerchiefs to dryer
28. Dry for 30-minutes
29. Remove handkerchiefs from dryer
30. Gather handkerchiefs A-2, B-2, and C-2
31. Measure 1/3 Cup Detergent of #2
32. Add handkerchiefs A-2, B-2, C-2 to washing machine
33. Pour Detergent #2 into washing machine
34. Close lid to washing machine and use “Soak” cycle
35. After 5-minutes, wash on HEAVY DUTY cycle
36.Transfer Handkerchiefs to dryer
37. Dry from 30-minutes
38. Remove handkerchiefs from dryer.
39. Gather handkerchiefs A-3, B-3, and C-3
40. Measure 1/3 Cup Detergent of #3
41. Add handkerchiefs A-3, B-3, C-3 to washing machine
42. Pour Detergent #3 into washing machine
43. Close lid to washing machine and use “Soak” cycle
44. After 5-minutes, wash on HEAVY DUTY cycle
45. Transfer Handkerchiefs to dryer
46. Dry from 30-minutes
47. Remove handkerchiefs from dryer.
48. Make a grid using the handkerchiefs:
49. Ask at least three people which handkerchief from each of the stain groups (carbohydrate, oil, bleachable) they think is the cleanest.
50. Record their answers with a tick mark on the graph
51. Compare all answers by counting how many tick marks are for the A-1, B-1, C-1
52. Compare all answers by counting how many tick marks are for the A-2, B-2, C-2
53. Compare all answers by counting how many tick marks are for the A-3, B-3, C-3
54. Tally all tick marks for “A”
55. Tally all tick marks for “B”
56. Tally all tick marks for “C”
57. The one that has the most tick marks is the laundry detergent that works the best.
More people thought the Ultra Laundry Detergent made the handkerchiefs whiter and removed the stains best.
My hypothesis was correct. Ultra Laundry Detergent was determined to be better at working than Tide or Gain.
Questions For Further Research
I would like to know if the results would be the same if I used a liquid laundry detergent.
I would like to know if the results would be the same if I used different temperatures of water.
I would like to know if they kind of fabric makes a different with the stain.
Thank you, Mom for helping me and typing my Science project and for helping me with my board.
Thank you, Teacher, Mrs. Anderson and my class for helping me reach a conclusion by voting on which handkerchief was the cleanest.
Thank you to my brother, Li'l Man, for helping me make the ketchup stains.
Warning is hereby given that not all Project Ideas are appropriate for all individuals or in all circumstances. Implementation of any Science Project Idea should be undertaken only in appropriate settings and with appropriate parental or other supervision. Reading and following the safety precautions of all materials used in a project is the sole responsibility of each individual. For further information, consult your state’s handbook of Science Safety.