Ever wondered if you could send some fresh-scented goodness to someone else with USPS? The fact that USPS doesn’t place any restrictions on shipping detergent often surprises a lot of shippers. Standard laundry detergent from brands such as Tide and Downy is basically soap, and often a base, instead of an acid. Bases aren’t corrosive, and therefore, USPS doesn’t consider laundry detergent a hazardous material to ship.
The Cheapest Way to Ship Laundry Detergent with USPS
Now that you know you can ship laundry detergent without any restrictions, the key is to save yourself the most money you possibly can. Detergent containers are on the heavier and bulkier side (in terms of having an odd shape). This combination can add up to some pretty expensive rates. However, the cheapest option to send these will most often be USPS weight-based Priority Mail.
If your detergent bottle is on the smaller side, then you may be able to qualify for USPS Priority Mail Cubic. Priority Mail Cubic is a specially-discounted service where the cost to ship your package is only based on its outer dimensions, and not its weight. The thing is, the volume of your box needs to be less than 0.5 cubic feet in order to qualify. Also, you’ll never find these special rates at the Post Office…but don’t worry; we’re about to get into where you can find them.
Use Shipping Software to Capture the Deepest USPS Discounts Available
Here’s a pro tip: don’t buy postage at the Post Office! Instead, use free online shipping software to buy discounted USPS postage online. USPS offers the deepest discounts to shippers through their software partners, and this is often the difference between saving a few dollars on each shipment. If you’re sending out a ton of packages, these savings can make or break your business over time.
Shipping software is also the only place where you’ll be able to access special services like the aforementioned Priority Mail Cubic…so there’s that, too!
Learn more about choosing the best shipping software.
What About Other Cleaning Supplies, Like Bleach?
Unfortunately, using USPS to ship other cleaning supplies outside of detergent isn’t as clear-cut. Most other cleaning supplies are corrosive in nature, since liquid cleaning agents often contain acidic components. Therefore, you can ship these kinds of items with USPS…but USPS restricts you to ground transportation for sending them. That means air-based services like Priority Mail and Priority Mail Cubic are out of the question.
So, you’ll need to ship cleaning supplies via the Postal Service’s ground shipping service: Retail Ground at the Post Office, or Parcel Select Ground with shipping software (they’re both the same thing in terms of service standards—but Parcel Select is cheaper because of discounts that USPS offers through shipping software).