Science in your Laundry Detergent

When I was a kid, if I got a grass stain or a blood stain on my clothes it was probably not coming out no matter how much presoaking and hand scrubbing was involved. Nowadays, if I get food on my clothes, I admonish myself for being clumsy then throw it in the wash with some liquid detergent and hope that it magically comes out looking new. It still amazes me that it usually does. How have laundry detergents improved their cleaning efficacy so much in just the last few decades?

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