My sister mentioned to me a few months ago that she had started making her own laundry detergent. As a relatively new soaper, I admit to being quite intrigued.
However, my fiance and I had just bought 2 large bottles of liquid laundry detergent and I could not justify making any more. Since it’s just the 2 of us, we do not use laundry detergent as quickly as others, so I knew it would be a while before we would get to it.
Several weeks ago, while talking to her about wedding flowers & etiquette, she mentioned she was making another batch and absolutely LOVED it. Again, my interest was piqued. I asked her to send me the recipe, and she uses this one from HomemadeLaundrySoap.net.
Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap Recipe
This simple laundry soap recipe will leave your clothes clean and fresh and only comes to about 3 cents per load!
1/3 bar Fels Naptha Soap ( Ivory and Zote will also work)
½ cup washing soda (found in the laundry section at most stores)
½ cup borax powder (the 20 Mule Team brand is a good choice)
2 gallons water
Grate the soap and put it in a sauce pan. Add 6 cups water and heat it until the soap melts. Add the washing soda (NOT baking soda) and the borax. Stir until it is dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour 4 cups hot water into a 2-gallon bucket. Add soap mixture and stir. Add 1 gallon plus 6 cups of water and stir. Let the soap sit for about 24 hours until it gels. Use a ½ cup detergent per load of laundry.
Admittedly, after learning how to make soap on my own, this recipe seemed pretty painless. The only thing that makes me nervous is how much it actually makes. You see, we live in a 2-bedroom apartment and we do not have a washer & dryer in our unit. That means we get to haul our laundry (and our laundry detergent) to/from our laundry room. We are fortunate in that we only haul up/down 1 flight of stairs. Also, being that I had completely forgotten about the homemade laundry soap, we did not keep our old containers (shame on me! I know!).
My sister also sent me this recipe from OneGoodThingByJillee.com that neither requires you to grate nor cook your soap. Looks like a winner! Except, again, the concern about transporting & measuring the detergent…
The other thing I don’t want to miss out on is the wonderful scented soap. We are also fortunate in that neither one of us have such sensitive skin that we need to buy specific commercial detergents. This means we are not spending a fortune on detergent, but I know we could be saving, too – and who doesn’t like to save money?
I have come across several dry/powder laundry detergents that use the Purex Crystals. We may end up doing that instead. I know it’s not quite as environmentally friendly, but it should make the switch a little easier.
Not only that, but the dry/powder detergents should take up less space in our closet.
Planning on following up later with some dry detergent recipes that I’m interested in trying out. At this point, we still have about 1/2 bottle of our commercial detergent left, so we are not in immediate need of a solution.