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Tide Original vs. Tide Simply: What’s the Difference?

Are you shopping for laundry detergent but can’t decide between Tide and Tide Simply?

Which version of Tide is better? How are they different?

In this comparison of Tide vs. Tide Simply, you’ll learn how these two detergents differ in cleaning power, ingredients, fragrances, price, and more.

I also reveal what Procter & Gamble, the company that owns Tide, says about both options.

By the end, you’ll have all the key facts to decide which detergent is best for your needs.

Use the links below to navigate the comparison:

Tide vs. Tide Simply: Comparison Chart

If you’re in a hurry, here’s a quick, side-by-side comparison of Tide vs. Tide Simply.

Tide OriginalTide Simply
IngredientsOver 25 ingredients (contains more cleaning enzymes)14 ingredients
StrengthThicker, more concentrated formula. Handles strong stains like dirt, oil, grass, and bloodThinner, less concentrated formula. Effective on minor stains and everyday wear
Product TypesPods, liquid detergent, powder detergent, to-go wipes, to-go pen, laundry booster, washing machine cleaner, antibacterial sprayPods, liquid detergent
FormulasOriginal, Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X, Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X Free, Plus Febreze, Plus Downy, Free and Gentle, Oxi, Coldwater Clean, Bleach Alternative, Ultra Stain ReleaseFree and Sensitive, Clean and Fresh, Clean and Sensitive, Odor Rescue, With Bleach, With Oxi  
FragrancesOriginal, Mountain Spring, Clean Breeze, Spring Meadow, Lavender, Botanical Rain, Fresh Coral Blast, Febreze, Febreze SportLine Dry Fresh, Fresh Linen, Refreshing Breeze, Daybreak Fresh, Berry Blossom, Clean and Fresh, Cool Cotton  
Price$$$ (view on Amazon)$ (view on Amazon)

Difference 1: Ingredients

The most notable difference between Tide and Tide Simply is the ingredients. As its name suggests, Tide Simply is a simpler formula containing fewer ingredients than Tide Original. In fact, Tide Simply has about half as many ingredients.

Tide Simply contains fewer enzymes, odor removers, process aids, and sud reducers.

To view the ingredients of any Tide product, go to Tide.com, navigate to the product, and click on the SmartLabel link.

Where to find Tide ingredients
Where to find Tide ingredients

The chart below lists the ingredients for Tide Original liquid laundry detergent and Tide Simply Clean & Fresh liquid laundry detergent.

Tide Simply Clean and Fresh versus Tide Original laundry detergent
Tide Simply Clean and Fresh vs.Tide Original laundry detergent
IngredientTide OriginalTide Simply
Sodium And MEA Laureth Sulfate
Sodium And MEA C10-16     
C10-16 Pareth 
Polyethyleneimines Alkoxylated 
Propylene Glycol
Sodium And MEA Citrate
Sodium Borate
Sodium And MEA Salts Of C12-18 Fatty Acids 
Sodium And MEA Lauryl Sulfate
Pentasodium Pentetate
Fluorescent Brightener 71
Phenylpropyl Ethyl Methicone 
Sodium Formate
Calcium Formate 
Sodium Cumenesulfonate 
Hydrogenated Castor Oil 
Mannanase Enzyme 
Amylase Enzyme 
Diethylenetriamine, Methyl Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate 
Polyoxyalkylene Substituted Chromophore (color)

Difference 2: Strength

Another significant difference between Tide and Tide Simply is their cleaning power. Simply put, the original Tide is tougher on stains and odors than Tide Simply.

Why? Because Tide Original is a thicker, more concentrated detergent containing more cleaning enzymes.

Let’s look at how Tide Original compares to Tide Simply in terms of performance, according to independent tests.

This Consumer Report’s study didn’t have great things to say about Tide Simply’s cleaning performance. It said Tide Simply is “no match for common stains.” They do not recommend Tide Simply, saying, “[You can] find much better options.”

However, experts at The Spruce gave Tide Simply a “Very Good” rating. The reviewer gave Tide Simply high praise for leaving clothes soft, fluffy, and pleasant smelling. They also mentioned that Tide Simply is an affordable laundry detergent for large families. The reviewer tested the detergent with a marinara sauce stain, and while Tide Simply did clean the mark, there was evidence of the stain leftover. The remaining stain was not obvious but still showed in certain lighting.

Good Housekeeping put several detergent brands to the test against 20 different stains like oil, coffee, and wine. The reviewers praised Tide Original, naming it the Best Single Dose Laundry Detergent, Best Powder Laundry Detergent, Best Deep Cleaning Laundry Detergent, and Best Liquid Laundry Detergent with Bleach Alternative. They highlighted its superior stain-removing ability. Tide Simply was not mentioned in the review.

Reader’s Digest reviewed the “17 Best Laundry Detergents” and applauded several Tide Original products. A total of four detergents made the list, including Tide Free & Gentle, Tide Plus Ultra Stain Release, Tide Plus Bleach Alternative, and Tide Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X Power Pods. Tide Simply did not make the rankings.

USA TODAY network website, Reviewed, covered the best laundry detergents, and listed Tide Original as one of the top picks. It was ranked second of nine, with “great cleaning power.” The review says that Original is easy to find and widely trusted by consumers. Although it is a more expensive brand, people trust the Tide name and are willing to pay the difference. The one con mentioned was that Tide Original is not ideal for people with sensitive skin.

Difference 3: Product Types

Tide Original and Tide Simply vary drastically in the number of available products.

The Original line offers a wider variety of products. It’s available in liquid, powder, pods, and specialty items like wipes and pens.

The Simply line is available in liquid, and Tide Simply Odor Control and Tide Simply Plus Oxi are available in pods. Nothing in the Simply line comes in powder form.

Difference 4: Formulas

Another key difference between Tide Simply and Tide Original is the formula variety. Formulas vary in strength and additional ingredients.

Tide Original is available in ten formulas, including:

  • Original
  • Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X
  • Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X Free
  • Plus Febreze
  • Plus Downy
  • Free and Gentle
  • Oxi
  • Coldwater Clean
  • Bleach Alternative
  • Ultra Stain Release
Tide 10x Heavy Duty
Tide 10x Heavy Duty

Tide Simply is available in six formulas, including:

  • Free and Sensitive
  • Clean and Fresh
  • Clean and Sensitive
  • Odor Rescue
  • With Bleach
  • With Oxi
Tide Simply Plus Oxi laundry detergent
Tide Simply +Oxi laundry detergent

Only Tide Original provides special formulas for heavy-duty messes and cold water wash cycles. Both offer formulas for sensitive skin.

Difference 5: Fragrances

Both Tide Original and Tide Simply have a wide array of fragrances. Here are the options (note: these change often).

Tide Original:

  • Original
  • Mountain Spring
  • Clean Breeze
  • Spring Meadow
  • Lavender
  • Botanical Rain
  • Fresh Coral Blast
  • Febreze
  • Febreze Sport

Tide Simply:

  • Line Dry Fresh 
  • Fresh Linen
  • Refreshing Breeze
  • Daybreak Fresh
  • Berry Blossom
  • Clean and Fresh

Difference 6: Price

Tide Original is more expensive than Tide Simply because it’s a more robust formula with extra stain-fighting enzymes.

Procter & Gamble launched Tide Simply to appeal to budget-conscious shoppers. Tide Original is a top-selling detergent, but the one criticism is that it’s too expensive.

Prices vary by product and form (liquid, pods, specialty formulas, etc.). Both detergents are available on Amazon (Tide Original, Tide Simply), where you can compare their current prices.

What Procter & Gamble Says About Tide vs. Tide Simply

I went straight to the source to get an expert opinion on the differences between Tide and Tide Simply. I called Procter & Gamble, the company that owns Tide.

When I spoke to the product specialist, I asked one simple question: what’s the difference between Tide and Tide Simply?

She said, “Tide Simply is a thinner, less concentrated formula — that’s the biggest difference.” She further explained by saying, “Tide and Tide Simply both work great for normal laundry, but if you’re a mechanic or work in construction, Tide Simply may not penetrate those stains.”

She also confirmed that Tide Simply has fewer ingredients, which is why it’s thinner and less powerful. She said, “Tide Simply doesn’t have as many cleaning enzymes as the original Tide.”

Lastly, she mentioned that Tide Simply is a more economical option if you’re looking to save.

Bottom Line: Should You Choose Tide or Tide Simply?

Tide and Tide Simply are both reliable detergents from one of the most trusted brands in the business. But which one is right for you?

Before I give my recommendation, let’s quickly recap the differences:

  • The Tide Original formula has twice as many ingredients as Tide Simply.
  • Tide Original is more effective on tougher stains, while Tide Simply is better for everyday washing.
  • Tide Original offers specialized products, such as the to-go pen. Tide Simply only comes in liquid detergent and pods.
  • There are ten formulas available in Tide Original and six types of Tide Simply.
  • Tide Original has nine fragrances, and Tide Simply features six. Both offer a wide variety of scents.
  • Tide Simply is a budget-friendly option that costs less than Tide Original.

Bottom line — Tide Original costs more, but it’s a stronger, more concentrated formula with additional stain-fighting enzymes. If you don’t mind paying more for extra cleaning power, go with Tide Original.

If you’re trying to save money and looking for a budget-friendly alternative, pick Tide Simply. It’s a reliable detergent for everyday laundry but might not pack enough power for stubborn stains.

Learn more about both options on Tide.com and Amazon at the links below:

Andrew Palermo Founder of Prudent Reviews

Andrew Palermo - About the Author

Andrew is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Prudent Reviews. He began his career in marketing, managing campaigns for dozens of Fortune 500 brands. In 2018, Andrew founded Prudent Reviews and has since reviewed 600+ products. When he’s not testing the latest cookware, kitchen knives, and appliances, he’s spending time with his family, cooking, and doing house projects. Connect with Andrew via emailLinkedIn, or the Prudent Reviews YouTube channel.

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