As moms, laundry is always on our mind. The expense, how safe is it, and how can we store enough for emergencies in better ways than the bottles and easily ruined cardboard boxes are issues that come to mind. Commercial laundry soap can be very expensive, leave harmful/irritating chemicals on your clothing, and can have a harmful effect on your environment and don’t store all that well. But I’ve found a great way to get my clothes clean, for about 3¢ per load, that is safe for the environment, doesn’t leave tell-tale smells in our clothes, and best of all – really cleans!
Do It Yourself Laundry Soap Powder
- 1 Box of Borax
- 1 Box of Washing Soda
- 2 bars of Fels Naptha
- 1 medium box of Baking Soda
Grate the laundry bars to a fine grate – I happen to use my Kitchen Aid grating attachment, but I’ve seen some chop up their bars and put them into their blender, but a box grater will work, too. I then put all of the ingredients into a large bucket, shake until well blended, then store in my laundry soap container. I then use about 1 Tablespoon per large load* (2 TB if we’re extra dirty or stinky). Because this is a low-sudsing formula, it’s perfect for front loading machines, too! There are a few different formulas for creating this powder, but this is the version we’ve created for ourselves that we love. You can add a few drops of your favorite essential oils for a fragrance if you wish – we just prefer not to have our clothes stink pretty 😀
As a note, some folks do find that this may not work great on whites depending on the kind of water they have. I tend to toss in some oxyclean for my whites about once a month, so I don’t have that issue – your mileage may vary.
DIY Liquid Laundry Soap
Do you prefer a liquid blend instead? Or do you need an idea for homemade stain sticks, etc. ? Here are some other great ideas that I found on Pinterest!
Soap Nuts Laundry ‘Soap’
If you haven’t tried Soap Nuts or Soap Berries, yet, here’s a great tutorial on them. Soap nuts are tree nuts found in South America that, when soaked, create a great cleaning agent that is safe! It’s also got a lot of great applications for cleaning around the house and personal care! It’s a little more expensive than my powdered blend, which is why I don’t use it, but we’re thinking of future ‘food storage’ implications and wanting to begin investing in it for long-term, emergency storage as it will be easier to store & use in that case.
I happen to keep an extra bar of fels naptha cut up into chunks for specific stain fighting – I just wet it a little, rub on the stain, and it works wonders when washed. However, if you’re wanting to make something more specific, here’s a great idea – homemade laundry stain sticks
Wanna see how the liquid soap works? Watch this video!
How do you tackle the storage issue of laundry soap?
Tom is a Marketing & Communications graduate interested in nature, gardening, agriculture, and traveling. For the last decade, Tom has turned his hobbies into a full-time job, creating useful resources and guides for all our readers. If he is not working on his next article, you will find Tom spending quality time with family or taking care of his own back garden.
In you dry laundry detergent recipe you say “one box or one medium box”, it would be so helpful to know the ounces of the size box you use. There are so many different sizes.