I originally posted this in 2008, but thought that I would revisit this little gem since it is time for me to make more detergent. This is a tutorial on how to make the powdered version of laundry soap. I hope to be able to put up pictures of how to make the liquid kind later on today. I prefer the liquid since it lasts longer in this house, but I will whip up a small batch of powdered if I'm in a pinch. No more running to the store just to pick up detergent so I can conquer Mt. Laundry.
This is another one of those things that I would have never thought I could do until I saw it on a website I visited. It looked really easy and inexpensive. If it's easy and cheap and works well, then I'm all for it.
I have seen a few laundry detergent tutorials out there, but none for the powdered version. My girls are the one who really wanted to do this tutorial. This was their first time making detergent. They were 14 and 12 at the time. So, as you can see, it is so simple that even a child could do it.
To start with you'll need 3 ingredients:
- Borax - 1 cup
- Washing Soda - 1 cup
- A laundry soap bar--->Fels Naptha or Zote - 1 cup
Many people have said that they have had a hard time finding the washing soda or the Fels Naptha. The easiest way to find Fels Naptha is to go to this website. Under brand you click on laundry care and under item click on Fels Naptha. Then you can type in your zip code. It will tell you all of the stores around you that carry it.
To find the washing soda call this number. 1-800-524-1328. It is a recording that will give you a list of stores that carry washing soda in your area.
What to do:
1. Measure out 1 cup of Borax and put into a bowl
2. Measure out 1 cup of washing soda and put into a bowl
3. Grate 1 cup of the soap bar. Add to bowl with Borax and washing soda. I am using Zote this time. I usually use Fels Naptha, but found this at my Super Target and thought I would try it.
4. Mix well
5. Put in storage container---> In this case we are using an old cool whip container
6. Use 1 Tbsp per load.
That's it. It's as easy as that. It only cost me pennies per load. A very frugal alternative to store bought detergent. It works well too. If I have a really dirty load I will up the amount I use by a small amount. I know that people use Oxyclean also. Have you made your own laundry detergent? What did you think?
Pictures of making this version later!
Washing soda 1/2 cup
Borax 1/2 cup
Bar of laundry soap 1/2 bar (Fels Naptha or Zote)
4 cups of hot water in large bowl
Grate soap and put in a large saucepan. Add 6 cups water and heat until soap melts. About 15-20 minutes. Add washing soda and borax. Stir until dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour the 4 cups of really hot water into your bucket. Add soap mixture and stir. Next, add 1 gallon plus 6 cups of water and stir. Let soap sit for 24 hours before using so that it gels. Use 1/2 cup per load. If you are using a front loader use less than this.
Now, sometimes I add just a tad more soda and borax than the recipe calls for. In the summer is when I do this more as the children get dirtier. I put mine in a 2 gallon bucket with a lid. It fits on my shelf better. One more thing. As the detergent is gelling overnight, we take a hand immersion blender or my husband takes his drill with a paint stirrer attachment and will mix it up a few times. I find it just holds together better. Now, it will separate sometimes, but just mix it up before you use it!