. Distinguish between Soap and detergent

Best Answer


  • Soap refers to the sodium or potassium salt of long chain fatty acids (Stearic acid, Palmitic acid).

potassium salt


  • Detergent refers to the sodium or potassium salt of a long alkyl chain terminating with a sulfonate group.

sodium or potassium


  • Soaps are insoluble in hard water as they generate insoluble Calcium and Magnesium soaps.
  • Hard water comprises Calcium and Magnesium ions.
  • Detergents can be used in soft as well as hard water as they produce foam in hard water.
  • Laundry soaps include fillers like(borax, sodium carbonate, and sodium rosinate).
  • Anionic detergents are used for household purposes.
  • Liquid dishwash are non-ionic detergents.
  • Medicated soaps have substances with medicinal properties.
  • Cationic detergent has a germicidal property.
  • Cationic detergent (Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide) used in hair conditioners.

Final Answer:

Hence, soaps are salts of long chain fatty acids and detergents are sulphonated long chain alcohols or hydrocarbons.



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