In the washing machine they seem to get clothes clean, but then again I learned that clothes get clean even when you put nothing in the machine - no detergent, no "eco wash balls", nada. Still clean. So that's what we usually do nowadays.
I also tried them in my dishwasher. Now I know that stuff in the dishwasher doesn't get clean if you forget the dishwasher powder. I've tried it and the dishes come out rather manky. I've been looking for a more natural alternative to dishwasher tablets/powder for some time and these seem to fit the bill. The dishes came out clean, I was pleased with the result.
On the other hand the soap nuts come all the way from India. It seems a bit daft to be really fussy about eating only local food and then use nuts from India to wash the dishes afterwards. I also can't find any information about the condition these nuts are produced in. Are Indian farmers grubbing up the crops that feed their own families to plant soap nut trees as a cash crop? If so, are they being paid fair prices for the nuts? Or are people raiding natural forests to harvest these nuts now that westerners are suddenly buying them? Just what does commercial soap nut production involve?
When this packet runs out, I don't think I'll be buying any more. Although I'd be interested in them as an alternative to dishwasher tablets, there are just too many questions about their environmental impact for me to feel happy about using them.