Honestly I think it's because Mother-Ease has been around longer than most (if not all!!) other diapering companies and haven't jumped on the 'only miniscule amounts of specialized mail-order detergent will ever get diapers clean' bandwagon because they probably know better. Honestly I don't know why seemingly everyone in the cloth world has suddenly decided you need these specialized detergents to get diapers clean. I've researched the detergent thing quite extensively and although I find lots and lots of people/websites that talk about it, none EVER give any real scientific reason as to why this would be. Lots of conjecture and 'I read on a website that one lady's cousin's friend... blah blah blah....' but no real scientific explanation for build-up or the need for specialized detergents.
Do note that many diaper manufacturers are now offering their own 'brand' of detergent and/or selling a specialized brand. So they're not exactly unbiased in their recommendations... And quite frankly, the formulation of many of these specialized detergents are quite lacking and often total ripoffs. For something to be a real detergent you need water conditioners (water softeners - ie washing soda, sodium carbonate) and surfactants. Many specialized diaper detergents are just water softeners (borax, washing soda, Oxy-Clean and some essential oils). Might work for some people but overall it's not a complete detergent. AND it's something you can quite easily make at home yourself!!
I'm experimenting with detergents and such myself right now (I talk more in detail in a previous post) and quite frankly the absolute best detergent I've tried so far is Tide (plain old regular scented powdered Tide). I used a ridiculously large amount (not that you'd need to - I'm just experimenting with build-up as well) and had absolutly no ammonia in all my nighttime diapers (5 year old heavy wetters no less!!!). Not only that, I had no odors or ammonia at all in the pail, even after sitting for 5-6 days.
Country Save should be a good choice, how much were you using? Nature Clean is a great detergent for clothing and such but I do wonder about a couple of things with natural detergents for diapers. First, many may just be too gentle to handle the nasties in diapers, especially overnight ones. Second, many contain vegetable based surfactants that may act as pure soap and cause soap scum build-up in diapers (this is not to be confused with the oft-proclaimed detergent build-up problem, pure soap is well documented as problematic in diapers and even clothing to a certain extent). But then I do believe it has high ratings at the Pinstripes & Polkadots detergent rating chart so what do I know... Again, maybe you're not using enough? Or maybe you have hard water and could benefit from an extra dose of water softeners (Calgon is great but washing soda will do the same job at much cheaper!) along with your detergent?
Other than that if you want to try Tide I say go for it! I've had great success with it and know TONS of others who have as well (go to Diaperswappers.com and search for Tide, you'll find hundreds of happy Tide moms!). Just use a full scoop (to the 1 or 2 line) and don't worry about build-up or suds or stripping or anything else! Tide isn't my favorite detergent when it comes to ethics or the environment, but if it keeps your diapers smelling happy then it's totally worth it!
<message edited by KarenC on Wednesday, June 08, 2011 9:08 PM>