At this year’s Fancy Food Show in New York City, the Rebel Green Deluxe Dish Soap display was especially inviting. After three days of cheese, ceviche, pâtés, and pickles, submerging one’s hands in water with floral-scented soap was a welcoming thought.
Rebel Green dish detergents, despite their light feel, work as well in the grease-cutting department as most heavy-duty action brands. The pleasant natural scents seem like what a home kitchen should smell like. The ingredient list is short and understandable. The soap is sulfate-free with a 95 percent plant-based surfactant (the “detergent” part that actually does the grease-cutting), and scented oils (the part that protects our skin while we wash dishes). The company has a line of air freshener products as well, so it knows how to make the dish soap smell nice; it sources essential oils from around the world.
The dish soaps come in pink lilac, lavender and grapefruit, peppermint and lemon, frankincense and pine, and unscented. The price ($3.99 for 16 ounces) is less expensive than other eco-friendly brands. It doesn’t foam as much as the typical “heavy-action” products, but sudsiness has no relationship to cleaning power (hence the push to low-suds “HE” detergents for clothes as well).
The packaging, a play on vintage glam, shows a chef/domestic goddess in heels. Other kitchen products include tree-free paper towels and fruit and veggie cleaner. Aside from the company’s Boston connection — a co-owner is a BU Communications grad — the line is available at Star Market, Shaw’s, Roche Brothers, Hannaford, Thistle & Shamrock in Cambridge, and elsewhere.