The Bottom Line
- Captures loose dyes in wash water.
- Not effective for all non-colorfast fabrics.
- Relatively high cost per use.
- Specially treated cloth for capturing loose dye in the wash load.
- Not effective for large loads of non-colorfast garments or linens.
- Works in regular and high-efficiency washers.
Guide Review - Shout Color Catcher - About.com Laundry Product Review
Shout Color Catcher from SC Johnson is advertised to capture loose dyes in wash loads so that colors and whites can be mixed without worrying about color transfer. The directions are to add one sheet to the wash load (use two to three for new, dark or non-colorfast garments); wash as usual and then discard the sheet(s).
I gave it the Color Catcher sheets a try with a load of khaki slacks and brightly colored knit shirts. My clothes came out just fine and the color catcher sheet came out looking a bit purple (blue and red shirts). I was washing in cold water with regular detergent.
The Shout package does not list any ingredients but they are available on the SC Johnson website. The cloth is a specially treated cellulose sheet that is processed so it will absorb loose dyes in the wash. It is designed to not break down in the wash, but instead retain its cloth form and keep the loose dyes contained. There is also fragrance added to the product.
The color catcher sheets can be used in regular or high-efficiency washers. It is recommended that if using in a front-load machine, the sheet should be placed in a mesh bag before adding to the washer. This will prevent the sheet from being "lost" in the washer.
The cost of each sheet is around 40 cents. I would recommend using the Color Catcher sheets when you just don't have time to separate colors and must do a mixed load of laundry. However, I still feel that it important to separate clothing by color and type of fabric. These sheets will not capture all of the dye transfer from new blue jeans onto a white shirt.
Specific questions? Just ask here.