Many months ago, during some afternoon blog-hopping, I happened upon a recipe for homemade laundry detergent. Now, I’m all about homemade food, but laundry detergent? That was a new one to this frugal-minded mama.
Feeling adventurous, and inspired by the pennies-per-load cost, I added the few ingredients to my grocery list.
You know if you keep doing the same thing in the same way you’ll continue to get the same results, right? I couldn’t find Arm & Hammer Washing Soda. Could not. Anywhere! (in the same places that I kept looking over and over) Guess what happened when I glanced at the other end of the detergent aisle in the store? The end that I had not bothered with for six months because I just knew where that washing soda should be located?
Uh-huh. I’ve got my soda. And my stubbornness is still intact, minus my pride.
Homemade Liquid Laundry Detergent (done mostly like Nissa, thanks!)
1. Grate Fels-Naptha bar. I cut it into chunks (very easy to cut – almost shredded) and then pulsed it in my food chopper.
2. Melt Fels-Naptha in 1 quart hot water. When I saw how powdery my bar soap had become with the food chopper, I almost decided to just make powdered laundry detergent. Maybe next time.
3. Add Borax, Oxi-Clean, and Washing soda. Combine. This gets very frothy!
4. Pour into a 5 gallon bucket. Add 2 1/2 gallons water. Stir. (I didn’t have a 5 gallon bucket. I found two different ice cream-size buckets and am just using those with less water.)
** As it sits, soap gets very lumpy and gel-like. I’ve been told that this is exactly how it’s supposed to look.
5. For each load, measure out 1/4 to 1/2 cup of detergent. I’m shooting for 1/4 cup since mine is more concentrated, with less water.
- Super easy to make.
- Smells so… clean, I guess. That’s a good thing!
- The gel will have to be stirred each time I want to use it. Seems like a hassle to me. I like easy, and I’m thinking it would be easier to just combine the soap ingredients into a dry laundry powder and skip the water. Donielle does it that way and then uses 2 Tbsp. powder for each load.
- I’ve only washed sheets in this concoction so far. Can’t wait to see what it does with my kids’ play clothes!
- I’ve not done my own cost analysis yet, but Phoebe says it’s about a penny per load!
So, tell me. Do you make your own laundry detergent? Am I doing it right? What do you think of it? Will I like the liquid? Should I try powdered? I’m so curious!