It’s been on my list since January, but I just now took the leap and made it.
I was buying Purex Free & Clear for what I considered to be really cheap (about $2/72 oz) but this honestly blows that out of the water.
So, here we go… homemade (liquid) laundry detergent! There are plenty of powdered detergents and other recipes out there. This is just the one that I decided to use because it only makes about 1 gallon at a time, which I am comfortable with storing.
Recipe printable now added to the bottom of this post!
All you need are these 3 ingredients + tap water.
Just so you know, washing soda IS NOT the same as baking soda, although, I’ve been told that it is.
You’ll just need 1/3 of the Fels Naptha soap bar:
Grate it up on a regular kitchen-grater. Don’t be too terribly concerned with size because you are melting it down in a bit, anyway.
Then you’ll want to put a pot of 1 qt water on low heat on the stove + the grated soap to melt it down.
After the soap is melted and you don’t see any shreds left, you’ll add 1/2 cup borax and stir, then 1/2 cup washing soda & stir till disolved.
and after that you’ll pour this warm mixture into a bowl of cool water (3 qts) and stir it all up. It will start to thicken quickly. If you are uncomfortable with the thickness you can add another gallon of water to the mixture and instead of using 1/4 c. for laundry you will use 1/2c. It’s totally up to ya!
I poured my mixture into a used up Purex Free & Clear jug and the rest into this beautiful blue mason jar.
and there ya have it! I’ve heard that using this mixture completely eliminates the need for fabric softener (which we don’t use anyway). So I’m interested to see what it does.
You can sub out the Fels Naptha for a different bar soap, if you’d like. Many have had success with Ivory.
I am going to test this on cloth diapers to see if L has a reaction to the FN, if so, I’ll probably use Ivory next go round.
Let me know if you try this! It was really fun to do, and costs only about 55 cents per gallon, and each gallon will do 64 loads! Yes! That’s laundry detergent I will like using!
- ⅓ bar fels naptha soap (can also use ivory or another bar soap you like)
- ½ cup borax
- ½ cup washing soda
- 1 gallon water
- Gather your ingredients.
- Take ⅓ bar of your soap of choice (I used fels naptha) and grate on a regular kitchen grater. (do not worry about the size of the grated soap you will be melting it down)
- Melt grated soap in 1qt water on low heat.
- Stir until melted thoroughly.
- Add ½ cup borax, stir.
- Add ½ cup washing soda, stir.
- Pour warm mixture into 3 qts cool water.
- This mixture will form into a gel quickly. Keep stirring. Pour into desired containers, stir before use.
- Use ¼ cup per load of laundry.