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ThreeMain Review - The Best Green Cleaning Product?

My ThreeMain Review

Is this simple system a greener way to go?

5/5 stars

Pros:

  • Reusable aluminum bottles
  • Simple, natural ingredients
  • Auto-ship refills available at a discount
  • Membership available
  • 3% of all sales go to the Rozalia Project
  • Product formulas blended and filled in the US

Cons:

  • Has the potential to leak slightly
  • Only one scent available

Verdict:

ThreeMain makes zero-waste products that use aluminum bottles and even has a recycling program available. It makes me feel good knowing I’m helping reduce plastic waste. I am obsessed with the scent of their products, which use simple, easy-to-understand, effective ingredients to gently clean my home.

by Marne Orenich, MSA Reviewer, Cleaning Enthusiast
September 30, 2019| 9 comments

I’m no stranger to reviewing cleaning products. I have jumped at the chance to try products from Grove Collaborative, Brandless, and more recently, Blueland. The latest brand that’s been on my radar? ThreeMain. ThreeMain offers just three cleaning products, plus subscription refills. The company promises to keep your home fresh and clean, all while donating proceeds to The Rozalia Project, a non-profit dedicated to keeping our oceans clean. This brand seems to legitimately care about reducing waste and preserving the planet, and their formulas struck me as the closest I’ve seen to something you might make yourself.

Read on for my full review of ThreeMain’s Clean Green Starter Kit. And if you’re into finding more home-centric subscriptions, take a peek at our list of the best subscription boxes for your home!

My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out our review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

Quick Facts

Cost

  • The Clean Green Starter Kit is $22.99.
  • Refills are $3.99 for cleaner and $6.99 for dish soap. Both come in a 16 oz. pouch.
  • They also offer a “Blue Membership” (pay quarterly or yearly—price breaks down to $19.99/month), which includes refills, sponges, and their recycling program. Learn more about the membership here, or further down in the review.

Products

  • 1 16 oz. Multi-Surface Cleaner
  • 1 16 oz. Liquid Dish Soap
  • 1 16 oz. Bathroom Cleaner

Perks:

  • Made in the USA
  • Non-toxic
  • Biodegradable
  • Pet-friendly
  • Free of:
    • Synthetic Fragrances
    • Formaldehyde
    • Parabens
    • Phthalates
    • Glycol Solvents
    • Artificial Colors

Here are the ingredients in the products featured in this review:

Bathroom Cleaner: Water, Naturally Derived Surfactant (from coconut and palm oil), Hydrogen Peroxide, Citric Acid, Organic Lemon Oil (for aromas)

Multi-Surface Cleaner: Water, Naturally Derived Surfactant (from coconut and palm oil), Hydrogen Peroxide, Citric Acid, Organic Lemon Oil (for aromas)

Liquid Dish Soap: Water, Naturally Derived Surfactant (from coconut and palm oil), Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Gluconate, Organic Lemon Oil (for aromas), Xantham Gum, Vegetable Glycerin

What’s in the Clean Green Starter Kit?

  • Opened boox showing branded ThreeMain box

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  • ThreeMain Review

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  • Open ThreeMain Starter Kit Box

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    My ThreeMain starter kit arrived inside a nice branded box nestled inside of a larger cardboard box. All of the packaging can be easily recycled.

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      Inside the box, there’s a card with a quick overview of ingredients and environmental facts. I like having almost all of my questions answered simply, right out of the gate.

      My Clean Green Starter Kit included three 16 oz. aluminum bottles with aluminum caps, each filled with a different product. The plastic pumps and spray nozzles for the bottles were separate. All you have to do is replace the cap with the bottle’s dedicated nozzle, and you’re ready to clean!

      All ThreeMain bottles are 10.75 inches tall with a slender shape. The lightweight aluminum material is cool to the touch. I don’t have to worry about any falls these bottles might take since they’re made of metal. The spray nozzles have four settings—”Spray”, “Stream”, and two “Off” settings in between. I noticed that the nozzles leaked slightly if I left them on Spray or Stream, but setting them on the Off position solved that problem.

      Do the products work?

      • Bathroom cleaner with spray head

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        ThreeMain Bathroom Cleaner, 16 oz. – Retail Value $6.99

        This bathroom cleaner, like all of ThreeMain’s products, has a barely-there lemon scent. It smells super fresh and actually lifts my mood slightly. If you’ve read my reviews for other types of subscriptions, you know I love clay face masks and like to try unique products like charcoal toothpaste. In other words, my sink can get super messy. The bathroom cleaner easily tackled dark brown cacao face mask splatters that I had let set in for a couple of hours. In the tub, I sprayed the cleaner around a soap scum ring and let it soak for a few minutes before wiping the surface clean. I was so impressed with how this formula could be gentle yet tough at the same time! I even used the cleaner on my bathroom mirror, and it wasn’t streaky at all.

        • Multi-Purpose cleaner with spray head

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          ThreeMain Multi-Surface Cleaner, 16 oz. – Retail Value $6.99

          There is no difference between the ingredients in the ThreeMain bathroom cleaner and this multi-surface cleaner. They just want to provide you with another bottle that you can use outside the bathroom without having to worry about spreading icky germs around the house. I mainly use this one in the kitchen, since I like to clean as I cook, but it works just as well on my wood dining table, laminate Ikea record shelves, and the marble side tables in my living room. This formula also has a subtle lemon scent which dissipates quickly. One thing I noticed is how well this cleaner worked on the Ikea shelves I mentioned. I burn candles a lot and have noticed that some surfaces in my house have this oily residue (presumably from said candles) that when mixed with dust, creates this sort of… gunky… ickiness. Other cleaners just smear it around, but I am really impressed with how ThreeMain’s formula actually cuts this greasiness and removes it completely. Bravo!

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            ThreeMain Dish Soap, 16 oz. – Retail Value $9.99

            The final product ThreeMain offers is dish soap. I don’t own a dishwasher, so I clean all of my dishes by hand. I was pleasantly surprised they offered this product. And oh my goodness gracious, I am obsessed with the smell of this soap. It smells like iced tea to me. It’s slightly different from the scent of the other products, though I’m sure the scent has to do with the lemon oil they use for fragrance. It’s so fresh and heavenly. Perhaps the scent just reminds me of an Arnold Palmer (lemonade and iced tea)? Even though I want to drink it, I control myself.

            The main difference I noticed between this soap and others I’ve used in the past is that this one doesn’t give me a big, satisfying lather, but that also means that it goes down my drain all that much cleaner. I’ve found this dish soap to be completely satisfactory for glasses, plates, and even pots and pans with some caked-on food. A simple soak with a pump of this product seems to loosen up anything really gross.

            Simple Ingredients

            What I like the most about ThreeMain are their simple natural formulas. This seems to be the closest I can get to making my own cleaners without actually having to do so on my own. Both the bathroom cleaner and the multi-surface cleaner have the same list of just five ingredients including water, a naturally derived surfactant from coconut and palm oil, hydrogen peroxide (which kills bacteria, viruses, and mold), citric acid (as a disinfectant against bacteria and viruses), and organic lemon oil for the pleasant scent. The liquid dish soap only has four ingredients in addition to the three common ones it shares with the other formula (water, a naturally derived surfactant, and the organic lemon oil). Those four are sodium hyaluronate (to reduce the probability of oxidization while being great for skin), sodium gluconate (a natural preservative and helps cleansing products to foam better in hard water), xanthan gum (to thicken), and vegetable glycerin (breaks down proteins and oils while softening skin). I learned a lot looking up all of these ingredients and was most interested in the fact that sodium hyaluronate is really close to hyaluronic acid which both can be found in many beauty products.

            Auto-Shipments and Blue Membership

            All three of ThreeMain’s refills (which come in pouches) are available as a one-time purchase or as a subscription that delivers every one, two, or three months. You’ll save 10% by subscribing which makes the $3.99 cleaning product refills $3.59 and the $6.99 dish soap refills $6.29.

            If you want to save even more and get additional perks, ThreeMain offers what they call their Blue Membership. It’s available in either pay-as-you-go pricing for $59.97 per quarter or a flat up-front annual fee of $224.99 per year that auto-ships your cleaning refills as well as plant-based sponges. In addition to quarterly auto-shipments, you’ll also have access to their recycling program which makes the cleaning system zero-waste by sending back your refill pouches in a pre-paid envelope. You’ll also get 15% off any additional orders you make, free shipping on your membership deliveries, and a lifetime warranty on their aluminum bottles.

            With either option, your first quarterly shipment will include:

            • A filled reusable aluminum cleaning bottle of Multi-Surface Cleaner
            • A filled reusable aluminum cleaning bottle of Liquid Dish Soap
            • A filled reusable aluminum cleaning bottle of Bathroom Cleaner
            • 2 Multi-Surface Cleaner Refills
            • 2 Liquid Dish Soap Cleaner Refills
            • 1 Bathroom Cleaner Refill
            • 6 Plant-based sponges
            • 1 Pre-paid return envelope to recycle refill pouches through our zero waste program

            After your first shipment, your following quarterly deliveries will include:

            • 3 Multi-Surface Cleaner Refills
            • 3 Liquid Dish Soap Cleaner Refills
            • 2 Bathroom Cleaner Refill
            • 6 Plant-based sponges
            • 1 Pre-paid return envelope to recycle refill pouches through our zero waste program

            Value

            The starter kit costs $22.99 and contains three aluminum bottles (filled with cleaner). That breaks down to $7.66 each (or $0.48/oz.). You’re only saving about $1 by buying the set since each formula would cost $23.97 total if you bought them separately. Refills cost $3.99 for the cleaner ($0.25/oz.) or $6.99 for the dish soap ($0.44/oz.), but you can get them cheaper if you subscribe or sign up for the Blue Membership (which seems to be the most cost-effective). Personally, I don’t go through cleaning products very quickly, so buying refills a la cart sounds like the best plan for me. ThreeMain has pricier refills than Blueland (which I recently reviewed here) but seems on-par with other non-toxic brands I’ve used like Mrs. Meyers which run about (or $0.25/oz.). I also take into account how ThreeMain packages their refills which is liquid inside plastic pouches. That considerably reduces plastic bottle waste compared to others who just have a large bottle of concentrate but it’s more than Blueland’s small solid tablets that come in biodegradable paper.

            Verdict

            The more I clean with ThreeMain, the more I like it. Their formulas are the simplest I’ve seen (besides using diluted vinegar), yet have a wonderful fresh scent. The aluminum bottles strike me as being a great option since they’re lightweight, durable, and easy to recycle (although these are meant to be used again and again). I was a little hesitant to use something with liquid refills after liking the dissolvable tablet refills that Blueland makes, but gosh, I really like ThreeMain’s product, too. I might be leaning more toward using this brand in the future!

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            Written by Marne Orenich

            Marne Orenich

            Marne is a lipstick connoisseur, record collector, and twice over cat mom. She loves discovering new clean beauty brands and has quite the collection of beautifully packaged serums and moisturizers.

            9 Comments

            1. I ordered the Starter Kit and was thoroughly impressed with the fast shipping, the packaging, and the products! The smell is great with all three items, works fantastic and bonus – I love showing off the bottles! I LOVE the bottles… color, quality and even how they spray:) And I love how they are pet-friendly – with dogs that always want to put their nose into whatever I am doing – this is a certain plus! Would definitely recommend these products!

            2. Hi! Some great comments on here which we we sent some responses too. So everyone could see– here are our responses.

              1. Our palm is sustainably sourced.
              2. Our bottles are the best option to fight plastic pollution. Any product producing NEW plastic bottles even if they can be refilled is part of the problem Net new plastic creates ‘NURDLES’ which is just as dangerous as not recycling the finished product. They wont dent unless you throw them or smash them with a hammer. There’s always glass, which doesn’t dent– it shatters and is heavy. We hope anyone that like to see the dye of their products in a plastic bottle will reconsider not using those.
              3. We are cruelty free and in the middle of a site redesign and adding all of our new icons. And thank you for emailing us and then becoming a customer!!

              We know everyone has different tastes! We hope to be yours and earn your business. If not, read ingredients, know what ‘non toxic’ really means and be careful of concentrates–they are dangerous to your pets and children and very harmful before water is added.

              All the best for your team @Threemain!

            3. I sent this company a message and will report back. There is no information anywhere on their website saying they are cruelty free. Any company that is cruelty free uses this as a selling point. I was going to order until I realized this. Something as simple as natural cleaning products should be cruelty free.

            4. How concentrated is the dish soap? I use Mrs Meyers right now and before this had 7th Generation. I feel like they are so watered down. It’s not that they don’t bubble as much, it just takes a lot to clean some things, especially oily things. I would like to see a natural brand that has a concentrated dish soap!

              • We got your email and thanks for ordering!! We are in the process of resist info the site and adding all of our new icons.

            5. Palm oil?! You might want to look that up, as it doesn’t belong in any product calling itself sustainable. Seriously. And it’s too bad, as I like the aluminum reusable bottle aspect of this brand.

              • Our palm oil is sustainably sourced… let us know if you have any other concerns. Thanks!!

            6. As soon as I saw the bottles, I understood it was not for me. I only use clear bottles. Sometimes things as simple as this is what matters when making a decision to buy or not to buy. Besides, most likely, the aluminum will dent and the paint will chip.

              • We don’t use dyes so there is not much to see. I’m sure you could dent the bottle if you tried hard enough, but the bottles are guaranteed for your membership. They do not chip. Definitely better than plastic or glass—as it doesn’t dent, it shatters and is heavy.

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