January 23, 2012

Homemade laundry soap {eco-friendly & cheap!}

Laundry soap is expensive. Like, whoa.
Especially if you try and buy an all natural eco-friendly brand.
I always talked myself into buying it.
You know, better for the environment, and better for our skin and it's not like we use 5 gallons a week or anything.

Still, if there's an easy way to make an all natural product for less, I'm all for it!

I researched lots of homemade laundry soap recipes (there are lots out there) and kind of picked the one I thought would work best - and be the easiest!

I tried to take some half way decent pictures of the steps that I was slightly confused about while reading the recipes, so I hope they help.

It really is easy.

Here goes!

For the entire recipe you'll need:
An old laundry detergent container
1 bar Fels-Naptha soap
1 cup of washing soda (it's different from baking soda)
1/2 cup of borax
5 gallon bucket & funnel (make things easier)

The first step is to grate the bar of fels-naptha soap into a pot.
(I was surprised that it was yellow...I guess I was expecting it to be white??)

It will look like grated cheese :)
Add about 4 cups of water to the pot and melt the soap over medium-low heat, stirring every few seconds.
Fill a 5 gallon bucket 1/2 full with warm water.
Once the soap is all melted, pour the liquid into the bucket.
Then, mix in the washing soda and borax. Stir that up until it's dissolved.

Add warm tap water until the bucket is full.
Put the lid on and let it sit overnight to 'gel'.

When you open the bucket the next day, the mixture will be thick - notice the spoon is standing straight up!
We added another 4 cups of warm tap water and attempted to stir some of the large clumps out...it actually helped.

And then it's time to pour!
Notice my lovely assistant?! :)
This is when a funnel comes in handy.

Our mixture was still a little on the chunky side, but we used the back end of the spoon to help it get through the funnel.

Fill your container 1/2 way with the soap mixture.
Add warm tap water to make the container full.
Give it a good shake and you'll have your very own laundry soap!

And Ta Da! Make yourself a cute little label, and be proud of the fact you just helped the environment and saved your family money...aahhhhh, I love multitasking.

You'll have lots of soap mixture left over in your 5 gallon bucket. Just pop the lid on and save it. When your soap runs out,  add more of the mixture and more water. The 5 gallon bucket will make 10 gallons of detergent...and all for only a few dollars :)

For those who like their laundry to have more of a scent, you could add a few drops of essential oil to each container you make - lavender would be amazing!

Cheers to doing laundry!


Celeste said...

I've thought abt making some myself too but was always too lazy to look through the web and find a easy recipe. I'll have to try this simple one you just showed us! Thanks

Christina May Andrews said...

I am so glad that you posted this liquid soap! I made the non liquid detergent before and I can't wait to try this!!

Kacie @ A Collection of Passions said...

I can't wait to try it!


rach. said...

well look at that!

love, rach.

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healthposter09 said...

My friend and I just tried this and we were wondering how much you use per load?

Anonymous said...

You are missing half the directions. When you have the bucket full you pour half into another five gallon bucket and fill both to the top with water. This recipe is for ten gallons of laundry soap and is safe for HE. Im worried how you have your recipe, this will destroy peoples machines and clothing.

Anonymous said...

step by step direction didn't say when to add the borax and baking soda.

Tamara Pipkin said...

Yes it does.

Anonymous said...

How much do you use per load?

Anonymous said...

The dilution happens when you fill your detergent container half full with soap and then fill with more water.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if you could use it out of the 5 gallon bucket in gel form instead of diluting it in another container. If so, who much do you think one should use for a load of wash?

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