I’ve made homemade liquid laundry detergent for a few months now and I wanted to share how easy it is.
What You Will Need
- Borax 4.99
- Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda 3.99
- 1 bar of Fels-Naptha .97 cents you can also use Zote. Both Zote & Fels-Naptha are sold as “laundry bar soaps”. It’s okay to us ivory bar soap as well.
I found all of the above items at my local Super Wal-Mart in the laundry aisle.
- 5 gallon bucket FREE (already had on hand)
- Cheese grater FREE (already had on hand)
- Large wooden spoon or spatula FREE (already had on hand)
- Lots of old milk containers or whatever you have around FREE (already had on hand)
- Drill with paint mixer attachment (optional) FREE (already had on hand)
- 1 bar shaved Fels-Naptha, Ivory or Zoote soap
- 1 cup Washing Soda
- 1/2 cup Borax
1. Use a cheese grater and shave down 1 bar of Fels-Naptha. No need to grate it super fine, You’ll find it takes a lot of elbow grease to grate down this bar so a larger shave is perfectly fine.
2. You’ll need to heat 4 cups of water on medium heat in a large sauce pan. Add the shaved bar of soap and stir until completely dissolved. Usually takes about 5 minutes.
3. Fill a 5 gallon bucket half way with warm water. Add in the soap mixture.
4. Add 1/2 cup Borax and 1 cup Washing Soda to your soap and water mixture.
5. My husband had this handy paint mixer attachment for his drill so that’s what we used to mix the soap. I highly recommend using the drill on slow speed. I speak from experience, belive me. You don’t necessarily need a drill or a paint mixer attachment to stir your soap but I recommend it. The key to a good mixture is stirring and stirring again.
6. Fill the rest of the way with warm water. Cover securely and leave overnight so your mixture has time to congeal.
7. You’ll find the next day that your mixture has a congealed top layer. No need to worry, that’s expected. You’re going to stir your mixture again with the paint mixer.
8. The concentrated mixture will need to be added to equal parts water. I filled each of my containers a head of time half way with warm water. I found a nifty gallon pitcher and poured my concentrate into it. I used the pitcher to pour my concentrate into each container. Shake each container really good so the concentrate cam mix in with the water and you’re done.
I made nearly 10 gallons of soap for less than $9.95. I’m not sure of the exact amount but that’s nearly pennies per load. My next batch of detergent will only cost me .97 cents because I already have the borax and washing soda on hand. You definitely can’t go wrong there.
Want your detergent to smell sweet and fresh? You can add a few drops of essential oil to your detergent.
I have a front load high-efficiency washer and I find that 1/4 to 3/8 of detergent work good for washing a full load. If you have a top load washer I recommend using 1/2 cup of detergent per load. I make detergent for my mom as well and she uses a regular top load washer and that’s what works best for her.
If you’re worried you can’t use this detergent in her front load HE washer here are the facts. That special HE detergent you’re spending an excessive amount of money on has low suds. This homemade liquid laundry detergent also has low suds. You’re good to go! It’s suggested to use detergent that has little to no suds for HE washers. If you want you can always call or e-mail customer service to find out for yourself. That’s what I did. I have a LG model and I simply e-mailed them with my question. I wanted to be sure before I used my homemade detergent.