Sunday, January 6, 2013

DIY Laundry Detergent

Earlier this week I finally got around to doing what I have been saying I was going to do for months; I made my very own laundry detergent! I feel so domestic and frugal, but I also feel embarrassed that I have been wasting my hard earned money on store bought detergents when it was so easy (and kinda fun) to make my own. I will be honest though; I did a little research and my very own experiment to make sure I was doing this the fastest and easiest way possible. So, you're welcome. Here it is...

You will need:
-1 Fels-Naptha Bar Soap ($1.99)
-1 Ivory Bar Soap ($0.46)
-2 cups Super Washing Soda ($2.25)
-2 cups Borax ($2.00)
-A little helper (optional but way more fun!)

All the recipes for detergent I found said to sit and grate the bars of soap by hand. ...Uh, no thanks. I found alternative ways that were quicker, easier and way more fun!
 I started with the bar of Ivory soap and my little helper. After seeing this cool mom trick on pinterest, I thought this would be the perfect time to try it out. We put the bar of soap in the microwave for two minutes on a sheet of wax paper. I let my helper guess what would happen to it. He guessed it would melt and turn into liquid. He waited for it patiently...
 ...but he was wrong! It expanded into a big soap cloud and we were both thoroughly impressed.
 Lucky for us, our Ivory cloud crumbled easily with our fingers.
 While my helper finished up with the bar of Ivory soap, I got out my chef's knife and diced up the Fels-Naptha bar into one inch cubes.
 I dumped both bars of soap into the blender (Depending on the quality of your blender/food processor you may only want to add a couple cubes at a time.)
 along with the two cups of borax and two cups of Super Washing Soda. I pulsed the mixture until the bars were well chopped and then blended until the soaps were evenly distributed throughout.
 Transfer the detergent to a container with a lid. I found this one at Garden Ridge and it was the perfect size for a double batch. It even came with a 2 tbls scoop and flip-top lid!
For small to regular loads I use 1tbls and for larger or heavily soiled loads I use 2tbls. This recipe makes 6 cups of detergent (64ish loads) for less than $7. I doubled the recipe and made enough to last our family of three about 6 months. I can't help but think about all the money I am going to save, not on only on detergent, but also on all the other crap that I end up buying when I go to Target to buy the detergent. 
Happy savings everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Do you know if you can use this in a HE front loader?