I finally made my own laundry detergent. I used the recipe from Hillbilly Housewife. Here is the basic recipe: Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe 1 bar of Fels Naptha soap, shaved 4 cups of hot water to melt the soap 3 gallons of hot water 1 cup of borax 2 cups of washing soda 1 cup of baking soda 1 large Rubbermaid container about 4-5 gallons size The full instructions are here: Homemade Laundry Detergent | Hillbilly Housewife So far so good. The detergent leaves a nice smell to the clothes (including my Sons socks). And my towels are much softer, even with line drying (I do not use fabric softener on towels, just vinegar in the rinse). I have enough of the Borax and washing soda to make at least 2 more batches so it seems that this will be very cost effective. Plus the borax and washing soda can be used to clean other things in the house.