Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I'm a believer

(photo via martha stewart)
I finally did it. I have been wanting to try homemade laundry detergent forever, and I finally took the plunge! It was insanely easy and cheap. And it works SO well! I have always used Tide for the stain fighting power, and this is just as good. Oh my goodness, it is truly fabulous. I am not kidding when I say that I was giddy as I was making this recipe.

Here's the recipe:

Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap

4 Cups hot tap water
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar or Ivory soap bar
1 Cup Washing Soda
½ Cup Borax
- Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.
-Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.
-Stir and fill a used, clean, laundry soap dispenser half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use. (will gel)
-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, lemon.
-Yield: Liquid soap recipe makes 10 gallons.
-Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)
-Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)

1 gallon of Tide = $15.00 avg.
10 gallons of homemade = $10.00 (and I had to buy the bucket for $2.94), oh's much less than that because I still have the box of borax and washing soda left minus 1 and 1/2 cup. So you can figure it out:)

*I didn't use any essential oil in mine because I can just do that per gallon when I refill the container and mix it up. It smells fresh just as is anyway. Plus, I am still devoted to a certain downy fabric softener smell, so I will continue to use that.

*I couldn't find the arm and hammer washing soda or fels-naptha bar at Wal-mart or Target, but I did find it at a nice grocery store (ours is Publix). However, I've heard that Ivory soap does work just as good.


staceyj76 said...

I'm so glad you like it too. Were you able to find Fels Naptha at Publix?

Rachel said...

Is that really your laundry room?! I'm green with envy!

What do you think of Publix, by the way? Is it really considered a "specialty" store? I wasn't able to find *anything* I wanted there when we were in Tampa.

I'm totally going to make this, too - thanks for the recipe! I miss you something fierce!

iamwoman said... it's not a specialty store, althouh ours is a good one here. I just couldn't find it at alberton' I guess it's a step up?

and no..not my laundry room either... I'll fix that on my post:)

Jenny said...

Awesome! I am so going to try this!
I was just thinking the other day of how expensive laundry soap is. Now I have an alternative.

Jen O said...

What is washing soda, and how is it different than baking soda? Is it in the detergent aisle at the store?

iamwoman said...

It IS different than baking soda. It's used as a detergent booster/household cleaner. I was unable to find it anywhere here except this one grocery store. I bet in WA you could find it at McLendon's or perhaps the big Safeway. It's in the laundry aisle usually by the Borax.

Mary Seals said...

I would try this if I could purchase any of those things here... as it is I order melaleuca 'cause you wouldn't BELIVE how obscenely perfumy the asians seem to like their laundry soap, whew!!

Cortney said...

Very Cool! I just bought a whole new thing of laundry detergent...but in a few months when it is gone, I'll be back to this post for the recipe! Thanks for sharing! :)

Sarah in the Middle said...

Yay, it works! I am sooooo going to try it.
Hey, I was thinking we should get together today - wanna meet up at your mother-in-law's house this evening? Let me know :)

Mama Brown said...

OH MY HECK!!!! After all of the laundry soap I have bought over the years!!! 50 a month at least!! WOW!!!! I am going to do this!!!!!!THANK YOU!!!! I am sooo excited!!!!! just copied out the recipe!!! Love you!!

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