Why Is Dawn Detergent Recommended So Often?

A bottle of dawn dish soap.
Original blue Dawn dish detergent has a wide variety of uses other than its intended one for cleaning dishes. They range from removing fleas from pets, ridding your plants of insect pests, to its inclusion in homemade cleaning solutions. This is a page about, "Why is Dawn detergent recommended so often?".

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June 15, 2005

So many recipes for cleaners, insect control, plant food, etc and all-round-solutions-to-everything specifically recommend Dawn Dishwashing Liquid as one of the ingredients. Can someone tell me just what is so special about Dawn that it is recommended by name? What makes it superior to any other dishwashing liquid?



By (Guest Post)
June 15, 200511 found this helpful
Best Answer

Several years ago after the Exxon Valdez oil spill, I was watching a news program when I noticed a bottle of Dawn on the cabinet in back of the people who were washing the ducks, otters and other animals damaged in that debacle. No mention was made at that time of the product, but I figured if it removed oil from ducks, it would do the same for my dishes and pans!


Years later I learned Dawn was recommended for such extreme circumstances. I don't know how its particular ingredients combine to do the job...but they do!

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By syd (Guest Post)
June 15, 20054 found this helpful
Best Answer

It has ammonia in it.

Personally, you can take your favorite detergent and add your own ammonia to it!

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By (Guest Post)
June 16, 20056 found this helpful
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I don't know the ingredients but it is so highly recommended because it works so well while being safe. I live in Cincinnati (home of P&G who used to make Dawn) I remember a wreck a few years ago where an oil tranker lost it's load. P&G donated the Dawn to clean it up. With many products the of the generic will do but I've never found anything that is such a good cleaner--even all by itself.

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By Allison (Guest Post)
June 16, 20052 found this helpful
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In my opinion, the brand has just become a household name. Like, when you need to blow your nose, you reach for a "kleenex" and when you want an easy dessert you make "jello."

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By Memere (Guest Post)
June 18, 20057 found this helpful
Best Answer

Several years ago my then 3 yr old granddaughter put a whole large jar of vaseline in her hair. Nothing seemed to get it out. They called the 800# on the vaseline bottle and explained their problem.


They said use is mild and safe. It took a few washings because of the amount in her thick, long hair, but it worked like a charm. Keep a bottle on hand, if only for emergencies.

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October 2, 20084 found this helpful
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Dawn is the best for killing fleas also. Put water in a sprayer and spray the yard with it. My cat's come to me every morning and I use a flea comb on them and put a cup with one drop of Dawn and some water. Knock fleas in the water and in seconds they are dead

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 107 Feedbacks
January 12, 200910 found this helpful
Best Answer

I am a real skeptic about 'brand names'. That doesn't convince me at all, but Dawn is everything it claims to be.
2-3 drops make swishy water for wiping down the kitchen.


I use it to remove lanolin from raw sheep fleece (I'm a spinner etc). It really cuts grease.

Now watered down versions are sold in discount stores and that's a different story. Buy the regular Dawn, full strength. Best if you have Costco, buy the big one and it will last 6 months.

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January 14, 20094 found this helpful
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I've heard that Dawn contains ammonia. Makes sense: that would explain why it cleans so well and why it says don't add bleach.

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September 2, 20117 found this helpful
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Wow! This is an excellent post. I have learned so much from reading all of these recommendations for Dawn. There is no higher praise for any product than the loyalty of its customers.


All of these satisfied customers just couldn't be wrong. I've just added a bottle of Dawn to my shopping list! Thanks to you all.

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February 18, 20135 found this helpful
Best Answer

The comment of Dawn being used during the Valdez Oil Spill is true. Here in New Orleans when BP had an off-shore oil rig explode and thousands of oil messed up our whole Gulf Coast, many different kinds of animals were trapped in large pools of sticky oil. When they were rescued, they were cleaned with Dawn dishwashing detergent. I still remember seeing a bottle sitting on the beach during the newscast. I have been using Dawn ever since. I never thought about using it as a spot cleaner. Great idea!

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January 23, 20192 found this helpful
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PLEASE NEVER add bleach and ammonia together bc it make a poisonous gas and is harmful to breathe...It caused my newly married friend to have a miscarriage ...Very sad way to learn not to mix those together so please be very careful when mixing any chemicals together

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Bronze Tip Medal for All Time! 64 Tips
April 11, 2017

There are lots of hints referencing Blue Dawn. Will other liquid dish soap work just as well? Why or why not?

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