Everything you need to know about Shaklee Basic H

Shaklee Basic H

If you're here then there is a good chance that you agree that Shaklee Basic H is an awesome cleaning product.

If you are looking for other cleaners by Shaklee they can be found in this article.

Feel free to purchase Basic H from my Secure Distributor Store via the "click here to buy" button below.

If you don't know much about this product then I know you will by the of this article. Grab my free 50 uses about half way down!

How Basic H Works

Doc H first basic H

Basic H was first presented in 1960 by the Shaklee Corporation as one of the first non-toxic, biodegradable surfactants.

About Biodegradable Surfactants

Biodegradable surfactants are cleaning agents in Shaklee Basic H that lowers the surface tension of the water it's mixed into. Water by itself has high surface tension and is the same reason why when you spill water on the countertop it will form a spherical shape.

Unlike other cleaners (even so-called green cleaners) with chemicals that hang out in the ground for hundreds of years, its surfactants solubilize and loosen. Then eventually disappear. This process is how it loosens dirt and cleans surfaces on which it is applied. Moreover, it reduces the tension and makes your water wetter.

The Classic vs Basic H2

The Biggest Difference Between Basic and Classic

basic H and basic h2

The biggest difference between Basic H2 and the original Basic H or the Classic formula is a reformulated product in order to match what Shaklee calls a "Green Seal" of approval.

This "Green Seal" was committed to the greenest product using mainly coconut and corn extracts.

Whereas the Classic  (right) contained a linear alcohol ethoxylate that left streaks.

Among other differences, Basic H2 is now made with a greater concentrate. It also only comes in a 16oz or 32oz bottle. Whereas the Classic only comes in a 5 gallon or 30 gallon container. They are both liquids. The smaller, classic version you see in the picture is no longer available to purchase.

Users Beware: Bad Website Information

Basic H Caution

It is important that you are aware that the ‘Classic’ is not the same as Basic H2. Since Basic H2 is more concentrated I do not recommend you put it on skin for prolonged periods of time.

Many articles and misinformed Distributors across the web say Shaklee Basic H2 is ok to use for things like cleaning hands, bathing, shaving, and even insect repellent. Although it is a non-toxic "green" cleaner, if it does get on your skin, you should rinse it off to prevent possible irritation. For more info on this matter from Shaklee click here.

It is however, the 'Classic' formula that people loved to use full strength for those personal reasons that I've listed above. In any case, make sure you dilute your Basic H2 to use for those listed uses if you find skin irritation.

When the classic was sold in smaller quantities it was cheaper for people to purchase and use for such reasons.

Although they can still use the classic Basic H for those reasons (not approved by shaklee), they can only buy a 5 or 30 gallon.

Using 'Classic' Basic H on Farms

How Farmlands Use This Product

Basic H on farm land

Much of today's farm land has improved with better quality products, but many lands remain locked up or inactive. This is because of either the misuse or overuse of toxic chemicals that have penetrated the soil season after season.

Shaklee discovered that families were using the Classic Basic H to release those important nutrients back into the soil using their green, biodegradable formula.

As explained earlier, Basic H's "wetness" ​was able to penetrate those dry pockets, and tight clays on farm lands for crops and grass. This allowed for greater organic matter decomposition and soil manageability.

Nutrients were able to carry easier and faster so that roots could grow stronger and deeper. Since Basic H is non-ionic and non-phytotoxic there were never adverse effects on seed germination or root development.

Basich H on Farm

As a result, crops and grass lands thickened and grew more abundantly, while being free from disease, pests, insects and even worm cattle to name a few.

Other Uses on the Farm

There are many more uses for Classic Basic H out on a farm. At least a thousand. To give you some perspective with why it comes in a 5 -gallon or 30-gallon I'll share these with you.

  • Farmers were going as far as putting gallons of Classic Basic H into their 100,000 gallon plus manure pits to emulsify it. They do this to cure manure as it is a great resource to the soil.
  • They would use it as an additive to their herbicide mixtures to destroy weeds using quarts of Basic H to the 100's of gallons of water. The cleaner reduced their costs per acre, because the amount of herbicide and insecticides were reduced by as much as 30% if done without the classic cleaner.
  • And another effective use would be the spraying of cattle, hogs, and poultry. With just 1 quart of Classic Basic H to 100 gallons of water (less insecticide than normal) the wetting action worked faster and more complete. This saves a farmer time and their solution.

I will add that before you buy Shaklee Basic H for these listed above purposes, Shaklee does not approve of them due to liabilities they cannot control. Plus, most of their tests have only been approved for household (indoor) cleaning purposes. 

What This Cleaner is Made Out Of?

You may be wondering what natural cleaning product is made out of. What are these surfactants and natural ingredients?

Well, If you spent any time looking for the ingredients, you probably didn't find much or at least nothing specific as to what this stuff is actually made of. There are two reasons why:

  1. Shaklee has proprietary formulas. In other words, it is protected.
  2. They technically don't have to have anything listed on labels, because there are no chemicals. It is 99.95% natural.

Now, what Shaklee will tell you is that the formula is derived from corn and coconut. There is also natural thickeners and preservatives, along with water. It's through these ingredients that make this product hypoallergenic and fragrance free. The classic formula just isn't as concentrated.

Shaklee also provides a list of what's never in their products that classifies this product as natural and non-toxic. That list can be found by clicking here.

What About Alcohol Ethoxylates found in Basic H2

Now if you're like some people, "corn and coconut" doesn't cut it. Well, the only other way to get a more thorough list of ingredients is to get your eyes on the "Material Safety Data Sheet." However, even the MSDS limits your knowledge to only substances that are are potentially hazardous or can be classified as such.

So if you're really good you might have found the MSDS and listed under "Information on Ingredients" reads Surfactant mixture CAS# 110615-47-9 and 68515-73-1. You will find that those are simply skin irritants.

Now, there is one more called 68551-12-2 that is referred to as Alcohol Ethoxylates. Please don't be alarmed. Shaklee uses this as a nonionic surfactant, which is nontoxic (having LD50 comparable to sodium chloride). It makes up about 1.6oz per 16oz (10% by wt.) bottle of super concentrated Basic H2.

You'd have to drink up to 4X that amount of pure nonionic surfactant (6oz worth), not the Basic H2 formula before you'd be in hospital condition. That's in the equivalent of 3.75 16oz bottles of Basic H2.

So this just doesn't come close to posing a hazard, especially once mixed in 16oz of water.

How to Use 'Classic' & Basic H2

Shaklee Basic H

When Mixed With Water

Believe it or not, Basic H2 makes 48 gallons of effective, natural cleaning product from just ONE 16oz bottle of basic H2. 32oz bottles of it are also available and can make 96 gallons.

It's super concentrated formula takes only drops mixed with 16oz of water and you're all set!

For 'Classic' Basic H you still mix with water, however you'd use a little more formula to an equal amount of water for Basic H2.

Basically, anything you can clean with water, you can clean with this stuff. It dominates grease, grime, and dirt over 1,000 different ways. See our "50 most common uses" below.

I just buy 16oz bottles from the dollar store and buy the Basic H2 to make each bottle's recommended amount of cleaner depending on the home cleaning job I need it for.

50 Most Common Uses

Includes 'Classic' and BH2 Uses

Download our 50 most common uses that include Classic and BH2. Plus, get free instruction cards for both formulas so you can print out and keep by your cleaning formula for a quick reference. This includes the right amount of product added to each use.

Some of these cleaning needs include but are not limited to:

  • Floor cleaning
  • Wall cleaning
  • Window cleaning
  • Fruits and Vegetables
  • Wallpaper cleaning
  • Furniture cleaning
  • Plumbing (eliminates grease traps)
  • Humidifiers to prevent rust and scum
  • Fine fabrics such as woolens and nylon
  • Battery terminals to remove corrosion
  • Crayons to remove from walls
  • Sprayed on houseplants to keep them healthier
  • Fertilizer on your lawn to make the ground soluble to water
  • House Plants
  • Insect repellant

Basic H2 Out Performs National Brands

Basic H2, in conjunction with its "Get Clean" line out performs or matches 20 national brands. Some of the stand alone features that set Shaklee above the rest include their:

  • Super concentrated formula.
  • History in scientific research backed to 1956.
  • The freedom to mix their formula how you want without needing to buy another product.

Take a look at this quick chart to gather a quick perspective.


Common BrandsEx. 409, Mr Clean, Clorox, ect

Green Brands
Ex. "Simple Green," "Amway," ect.

Shaklee's Basic H2

Ammonium and/or ethanolamine


Sometimes, yes
(Simple Green Does)


Biodegradable & non-abrasive

Often, no

Often, yes


Recyclable packaging

Sometimes, yes

Often, yes


Concentrated formula

Often, no

Often, yes
(1 part, 3 parts product)

(3X concentrated)

Respiratory triggers




Price per gallon

About $14.30

About $7.68

About $0.21

It's Cheaper in the Long Run

Afraid of the costs? No sweat, you're spending less than a quarter per gallon for both formulas when compared to other all-purpose brands you may know. Your usage will also last much longer than any other product you buy simply because Basic H2 is super concentrated.

Think about this. A 16oz bottle of equals the cleaning uses of these 28oz bottles:

  • 214 ready-to-use all-purpose cleaner
  • 5,704 bottles of window cleaner (Windex) or
  • 36 bottles of ready to use degreaser.

Final Thoughts

Consumers BEWARE! Everyone house cleans. It's just that people misunderstood how “clean” their homes become, when they use these toxic chemicals. They could be doing more harm than good in the long run. Get the real dirt on clean.

For many years now, Shaklee Basic H's all natural cleaner has cornered the market for making a safe environment and a healthier life.

It’s important that you find a safe, non toxic, all-purpose cleaners that leaves your home cleaner and your family healthier.

Which One Should You Buy?

basich h or basic h2

If you stick to common household cleaning definitely go with Basic H2. It comes in the 16oz or 32oz concentrated size. It will last a very long time and will handle everything you need it to indoors.

If you're using Basic H for uses not on the label or for larger jobs like schools, churches, large offices, farm lands, yards, etc., then I suggest you use the 'Classic' Basic H formula, because the concentration isn't as high (for your safety) and comes in the larger size, either 5-gallon or 30-gallon.

Shaklee Basic H2 Video

About the author

Ross Curington aka Attraction Strategist

I help positive, motivated, and yet busy families seek a lifestyle of personal freedom through the health and wellness industry. As a father of two, husband, & full-time non-profit manager myself I can show you how to create an income around your schedule to live healthier while working smarter.

  • Cory Laverdure says:

    Just began working for a Dog Kennel, and they have a large pen that for the most part is very clean, but has heavy staining around the edges that have obviously havent been properly done in quite some time and I cant get them up with s scrub brush and pressure washer. seem to remember Basic H being a very effective cleaner back in the 90s and was wondering if Basic H or H2 would be a good choice? keep in mind I’m basically working with textured linoleum floor and plastic play play staitions that should’ve been “deep cleaned” well over a year ago. help

  • skip_2115 says:

    Hey Ross. We are a Shaklee couple in Georgia. Just want to let you know how great your site is! Skip and Georgia Peters

  • Hi Cindy, I know many people who do this and I have read many testimonials about people doing this. I wash my organic fruit with a drop of dishwashing liquid. Anyway, remember it is a “non-toxic” and chemical free. …BUT like everything, in moderation and proper use is key! Please know shaklee doesn’t officially endorse this nor a million other uses that have worked efficiently and safely. For legal reasons they can’t. Anyway, I don’t normally use no more than an 1/8 tsp. of basic h in about a pint of water for this. That or a spray or two from already diluted mixture. Don’t let it sit diluted for too long though. A couple minutes with vigorous movement should do just fine

  • Hi Nona. I’m not sure how much to use. Although I will tell you Shaklee products are super concentrated. So for small maintenance or cleaning concoctions for what most say adding in a TBSP (things like canola oil, baking soda, vinegar, ect.) the equivalent of Shaklee’s Basic or Dish washing liquid would be 3 tablespoons.

  • How did that youtube video turn out?

  • Nona Smith says:

    Years ago I read where Basic H stopped peach leaf curl, does any one know how much to use

  • Cindy Glonek says:

    Is Basic H safe to use diluted in water to wash strawberries before making freezer jam?

  • I’m glad it was useful! Yeah I love this stuff! Hope your video making is going well! Let me know how I can help. =)

  • Christina Winrod says:

    This article is really useful! I am trying to post a YouTube vid for the Shaklee basic H- And Its nice being able to read a few things that I didn’t know about it. 48 gallons? Holy wow!

  • Most people won’t because most people don’t know about
    Shaklee. But if I asked them if they could save $7-$14 on a gallon of cleaning
    product what do you think most people would say?

  • Francesca Devine says:

    Do you honestly think most people will by this over a generic all purpose cleaner?

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