Detergents are commonly 'alkyl benzene sulfonic acids'
Soaps are sodium or potassium salts of long chain carboxylic acids. The formula for soap is C17H35COONa, or sodium stearate, Detergents: Detergents are generally ammonium or sulphonate salts of long chain carboxylic acids.
Components. Laundry detergents may contain builders (50% by weight, approximately), surfactants (15%), bleach (7%), enzymes (2%), soil antiredeposition agents, foam regulators, corrosion inhibitors, optical brighteners, dye transfer inhibitors, fragrances, dyes, fillers and formulation aids.