October 27, 2013

DIY: Homemade Laundry Detergent

I became a Pinterestaholic early last year when we were living in South Korea. I saw one pin for homemade laundry detergent and I got excited. I thought it was a really cool idea. I wanted to try it so bad, but never got to doing it. Then we moved to the Philippines and I knew I wouldn't be able to make it for a while longer. During all this time, I would see pin after pin for homemade detergent, each one slightly different from the next. Now I have quite a few different pins on my Pinterest for homemade laundry detergent. If you're a fellow pinner, I'm sure you have one, or maybe even a few pins for some DIY detergent too, right? Well- after almost a year and a half from seeing my first DIY laundry detergent pin on Pinterest, I finally got around to making it last weekend.

There are tons of recipes for homemade detergent. I took 3 recipes and made a chart to layout what each recipe had so I could figure out what I wanted to do.

Please excuse the horrid handwriting. I made this quickly.

Here is what I decided to use (I took a few things from each of the 3 recipes) for my recipe:

1 box Borax (4 lbs.)
1 box Super Washing Soda (3 lbs. 7 oz)
1 box Pure Baking Soda (4 lbs.)
2 bars Fels-Naptha laundry bars
1 container Oxi-Clean (1.3 lbs.)
1 bottle Purex Crystals

For a couple of the recipes, they said the Oxi-Clean is optional. It just gives the wash some extra stain-fighting power. The small container of Oxi-Clean was about $4, so I just threw it in. The Purex Crystals are definitely optional- they're just for scent. I like some extra scent-  so I decided to get them.

First order of business for me though was to set everything up and make it look pretty so I could post a picture on Instagram, because I was that excited about this.

Then I got to it:

First, grate the Fels-Naptha bars:

Then put all the ingredients in a large bucket, mix it all up, but the lid on the bucket and give it some good shakes:

And that's it! You can store the extra detergent in a different container, or do what I did- keep it in the bucket! I just put some in the empty Oxi-Clean container to take with me when I go do laundry. You only need to use 2 Tablespoons per load (and just f.y.i- the scoop that comes in the Oxi-Clean is 2 Tablespoons, so I just use that for measuring!).

I used it today for the first time and it worked really well. Our clothes were clean and smelled great!

Here is a cost breakdown of what I paid for everything:

Quantity        Size                       Item                                                Price
    1             5 Gallon                 Bucket + Lid                                   $3.88
    1             4 Lbs. box             Borax                                              $3.38
    1             3lbs.7oz. box         Super Washing Soda                       $3.24
    1             4 lbs. box              Pure Baking Soda                            $2.24
    2              bars                     Fels-Naptha Laundry bars                $1.94 (.97/each)
    1             1.3 lbs. container   Oxi-Clean                                        $3.86
    1             container               Purex Crystals                                  $4.76
                                                                                            Total:  $23.30

This bucket-full of detergent I'm sure will last us a year, probably even longer. One blogger I came across said it lasted her a year with her family of four. So this will definitely be more cost-effective and economical-- always a good thing!

{**Update 11-3-13: I pinned this on Pinterest and a pinner commented the following: "Totally made this last September and am just now having to make it again! $30 for a years worth of detergent is AMAZING!"**}

These laundry detergent recipes are really forgiving and you can customize them any way you want to. You can choose whatever soaps and scent crystals you want and/or need. For example, some recipes use Zote or Ivory soap instead of Fels-Naptha. Some recipes use the Downy Unstopables Laundry Scent Boosters instead of the Purex Crystals. This is what I made and works really well!

Homemade Laundry Detergent
{printable recipe}


- 1    large bucket with lid (5 gallons)
- 1   4 lbs. box Borax
- 1   3 lbs. 7 oz. box Super Washing Soda
- 1   4 lbs. box Pure Baking Soda
- 2   bars Fels-Naptha laundry bars
- 1   1.3 lbs. container Oxi-Clean (optional)
- 1   bottle Purex Crystals (optional)

- Grate the bars of Fels-Naptha
- Put all ingredients into bucket
- Mix/shake ingredients together well.
- Use 2 Tablespoons per load

Let me know if you have made or plan on making some laundry detergent-- I'd love to hear from you. Any more tips or recommendations?

Other DIY-ness from Latitude Adjustment:
- DIY Self-Watering Seed Starter Pots (made from plastic bottles)
Homemade Deoderant
- Recipes
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1 comment :

  1. Good morning Leia, I've passed some sunshine on to you this morning at Femme au Foyer... bisous!


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