As promised, here is another version of homemade laundry detergent. The other day I showed you my version for powdered laundry detergent. That recipe is great for babies or anyone with sensitive skin, but our whole family uses it and I love it! View that post here.
Today’s recipe I can’t take credit for. I found this version of detergent from one of my favorite bloggers, Jill at One Good Thing by Jillie. Her blog is so full of useful tips and tricks. Please take a moment to visit her site here!
In Jill’s post, she has great photos telling exactly how to do each step. It’s so simple and that’s what I love about it. Here is her step-by-step tutorial.
This recipe is great for HE washing machines, regular machines, safe but effective on cleaning clothes, and also safe for sensitive skin.
Super Fast & Easy Homemade Laundry Detergent
This makes 1 gallon
- 3 Tablespoons Borax (found in laundry aisle at most grocery stores)
- 3 Tablespoons Super Washing Soda (found in laundry aisle at most stores)
- 2 Tablespoons Dawn dish soap (I use the blue dawn, because it cuts through grease better than any other I’ve tried)
- 4 cups boiling water
- 1 gallon jug
- Pour 4 cups of boiling water into gallon container.
- Add Borax, Washing Soda, and Dawn to container. Swirl around until all ingredients are dissolved.
- Let the liquid cool.
- Once it’s cool, fill the container almost all the way to the top with water. Bubbles will come out the top of the container.
- Use about one cup for large loads.
A few extra tips for you:
* This is safe for HE machines because it is low-sudsing.
* This detergent is watery, but it cleans really well. It even removes my husband’s grease stains from his work uniforms. I tried making it more concentrated by using less water, but the dish soap didn’t dissolve and just sat on top of the water.
* Make 2-3 batches at a time. Use up rate is about 16-20 loads. But it only costs about $.17/gallon!! (My powdered soap recipe does seem to last a bit longer.)
Give this or the powdered version a try and let me know what you think!
When did laundry detergent get so expensive?! Why am I spending $12-$20 on products that I am just washing down the drain?!
We have always been a Tide detergent family. Liquid…powder…it didn’t matter as long as it smelled good and was Tide. My husband is a mechanic, so his clothes always come home greasy. Tide was the only detergent that would remove the stains.
Then my son came along, and our laundry story changed drastically. He has very sensitive skin, and cannot tolerate anything but a free & clear detergent. (Check out my post on baby powder for sensitive skin)
Free & Clear wasn’t working for me because I like my laundry to smell good. So, we ended up buying 2 types of detergent: 1 for adults and 1 for baby. Crazy, huh?
I finally got tired of
spending wasting money on brand name detergent that was mostly water. I found quite a few recipes online, but none really seemed “easy”. I admit it…I’m a lazy effortless housewife and like things simple and no-fuss. A lot of the recipes for homemade laundry detergent required grating, cooking, mixing, and waiting. Basically wasting a whole Saturday morning making soap. Uh…no thanks!
So here is my no-fuss, super-simple recipe for laundry soap!
I use this for my son’s clothes and have had no problems with his eczema. My husband usually washes his own clothes (I know….he’s a keeper), and he still doesn’t believe a homemade version works as well as his beloved Tide (which we still have a bottle of because he refuses to switch.) But when I get a load of his clothes, I use the homemade version and he never knows the difference. (Until now…sorry honey, now you know.)
Homemade Laundry Soap (Powdered)
Great for babies, sensitive skin, or anyone really
**NOT RECOMMENDED FOR HE WASHING MACHINES (I have another easy recipe for HE washers, come back later for that recipe!)
***The Zote Flakes are what is not recommended for HE washers, but if you use Fels Naptha soap, I believe that is okay for front loading machines.
- 4 cups Borax
- 4 cups Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (not baking soda)
- 2 cups of Oxygen Booster/Cleaner (OxiClean)
- 1 box Zote Laundry Flakes (or 2 bars of Zote White soap, or 2 bars of Fels Naptha)
All of these ingredients I found in the laundry aisle at Wal-Mart.
The Zote Laundry flakes is a fairly new product, and may not be available everywhere. If you can’t find it, just grab 2 bars of Zote White, or 2 bars of Fels Naptha (both in laundry aisle). Put them in the microwave for about 90 seconds. This causes the soap to break apart and will easily crumble for you.
Grab a large bowl and layer each ingredient, this helps make mixing easier . Then grab a spoon and start mixing.
1 tablespoon per load, or 2 tablespoons for heavily soiled clothes.
I store this in a gallon air-tight canister, but use whatever you have.
That’s how easy it is to make your own laundry detergent! I think it took a whole 5 minutes to make.
Check back soon for my liquid version of homemade laundry soap.
Send me some comments if you have any tips or questions. I love to hear from you!
**UPDATE – I finally figured out the cost break down for this version of detergent. The leading sensitive skin/baby detergent costs approximately $.29 per load. My homemade version only costs $.07 per load, and yields about 200 loads per batch!!! Let the savings begin!!
My son Roland will be 2 in a couple of weeks. It’s a little sad for this mama, because I am realizing that this adventurous toddler is no longer a baby. He makes me laugh, knows exactly how to push my buttons, and most importantly, helps me slow down and enjoy life. He is my daily dose of delight.
R has always had sensitive skin. He is very fair with light hair…we blame both aunts for that one, as the husband and I have dark hair and not-so-fair skin. Since he was just a couple of months old, R has battled eczema. It’s never been severe, but it’s been enough to be annoying…and itchy. Mostly on his back, upper arms and diaper area, the eczema does effect his cheeks and face sometimes, too. We tried everything…soaps, lotions, creams, heavy creams, no creams, changing laundry soap, and everything in between. A combination of free and clear detergent, Aveeno eczema relief cream, Aveeno soothing bath treatments and an Rx cream, we finally have it to the “manageable” point. It’s still hard to keep that diaper area free of itchiness, though.
With potty training on the horizon, he is still in diapers. I use powder with each diaper change to keep him dry. At my baby shower, I received tons of baby powder! I just recently ran out…another reminder that my baby is growing up. I thought that now would be a great time to try a homemade recipe.
After many searches online, the ones I’ve found are very similar. Using cornstarch, arrow-root powder, essential oils, etc… I wanted something simple, easy, and something that would also help soothe his sensitive skin. Here is the recipe I came up with:
- 1 1/2 cups of Cornstarch
- 1 Packet of Aveeno Baby Soothing Bath Treatment
- The bath treatment is made of natural colloidal oatmeal, known for its soothing properties to itchy, dry skin. Plus, it helps soothe diaper rash. The cornstarch absorbs moisture and is used a base for some baby powders. With all of the hype about talc now, this is my preferred baby powder.
I combined each of the ingredients in a bowl and whisked them together.
After whisking the cornstarch and the bath treatment together, it was still a little lumpy for my standards. I then sifted it through a flour sifter into a larger bowl. This is what it looked like after sifting.
I took a pint-sized mason jar and punched a few holes into the top, and poured my powder into the jar. I originally filled the jar full. Not a good idea. Since the powder is a little thicker than the store-bought version, it needs a little space to move around. I emptied half of the jar and put the lid back on. This worked much better!
I took the other half of the powder and put it in a ziplock bag, and am now storing that in the freezer.