Homemade Laundry Detergent

Discussion in 'General Chit-Chat' started by mdprepper, Oct 13, 2010.

  1. mdprepper

    mdprepper I sold my soul to The_Blob. He had candy...

    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:eek:). 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.:D
  2. Genevieve

    Genevieve I'm done - gone

    Yea, there are lots of different recipes using those same ingredients. Some use a different soap, and some add essential oils. You can even use some oxyclean in the washer if it doesn't clean your whites that well.
    It all depends on your water.
    I like pretreating with the fels naptha first also. Love that soap.

  3. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

    Your recipe is like mine ... all but I do add oils.

    essential oils - :2thumb:

    Lavender ... my favorite...:D
  4. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

    found these online, anybody use em'?

    Recipe #1

    1 quart Water (boiling)
    2 cups Bar soap (grated)
    2 cups Borax
    2 cups Washing Soda

    ■Add finely grated bar soap to the boiling water and stir until soap is melted. You can keep on low heat until soap is melted.
    ■Pour the soap water into a large, clean pail and add the Borax and Washing Soda. Stir well until all is dissolved.
    ■Add 2 gallons of water, stir until well mixed.
    ■Cover pail and use 1/4 cup for each load of laundry. Stir the soap each time you use it (will gel).

    Recipe #2

    Hot water
    1 cup Washing Soda
    1/2 cup Borax
    1 Soap bar

    ■Grate the bar soap and add to a large saucepan with hot water. Stir over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.
    ■Fill a 10 gallon pail half full of hot water. Add the melted soap, Borax and Washing soda, stir well until all powder is dissolved. Top the pail up with more hot water.
    ■Use 1 cup per load, stirring soap before each use (will gel).

    Recipe #3

    Hot water
    1/2 cup Washing Soda
    1/2 cup Borax
    1/3 bar Soap (grated)

    ■In a large pot, heat 3 pints of water. Add the grated bar soap and stir until melted. Then add the washing soda and borax. Stir until powder is dissolved, then remove from heat.
    ■In a 2 gallon clean pail, pour 1 quart of hot water and add the heated soap mixture. Top pail with cold water and stir well.
    ■Use 1/2 cup per load, stirring soap before each use (will gel).

    Powdered Laundry Detergent – Recipe #4

    2 cups Fels Naptha Soap (finely grated – you could also try the other bar soaps listed at the top)
    1 cup Washing Soda
    1 cup Borax

    ■Mix well and store in an airtight plastic container.
    ■Use 2 tablespoons per full load.

    Recipe #5

    Hot water
    1 bar (4.5 oz) Ivory Soap – grated
    1 cup Washing Soda

    ■In a large saucepan add grated soap and enough hot water to cover. Heat over medium-low heat and stir until soap is melted.
    ■Fill a large pail with 2.5 gallons of hot water, add hot soap mixture. Stir until well mixed.
    ■Then add the washing soda, again stirring until well mixed.
    ■Set aside to cool.
    ■Use 1/2 cup per full load, stirring well before each use (will gel)

    Recipe #6

    2.5 gallons Water (hot)
    1 Bar soap (grated)
    3/4 cup Washing Soda
    3/4 cup Borax
    2 TBS Glycerin

    ■Melt bar soap over medium-low heat topped with water, stir until soap is melted.
    ■In a large pail, pour 2.5 gallons of hot water, add melted soap mixture, washing soda, borax and glycerin. Mix well.
    ■Use 1/2 cup per full load.

    Recipe #7

    2 cups Bar soap (grated)
    2 cups Washing Soda
    2 – 2.5 gallons hot water

    ■Melt grated soap in saucepan with water to cover. Heat over medium-low heat and stir until soap is dissolved.
    ■Pour hot water in large pail, add hot soap and washing soda. Stir very well.
    ■Use 1 cup per full load.

    Recipe #8

    2 gallons Water (hot)
    1 bar Soap (grated)
    2 cups Baking soda (yes baking soda this time–not washing soda)

    ■Melt grated soap in a saucepan with enough hot water to cover. Cook on medium-low heat, stirring frequently until soap is melted.
    ■In a large pail, pour 2 gallons hot water. Add melted soap, stir well.
    ■Then add the baking soda, stir well again.
    ■Use 1/2 cup per full load, 1 cup per very soiled load.

    Powdered Laundry Detergent – Recipe #9

    12 cups Borax
    8 cups Baking Soda
    8 cups Washing Soda
    8 cups Bar soap (grated)

    ■Mix all ingredients well and store in a sealed tub.
    ■Use 1/8 cup of powder per full load.

    Recipe #10

    1 cup Vinegar (white)
    1 cup Baking Soda
    1 cup Washing Soda
    1/4 cup liquid castile soap

    ■Mix well and store in sealed container.
    ■I find it easiest to pour the liquid soap into the bowl first, stirred in the washing soda, then baking soda, then added the vinegar in small batches at a time (the recipe foams up at first). The mixture is a thick paste at first that will break down into a heavy powdered detergent, just keep stirring. There may be some hard lumps, try to break them down when stirring (it really helps to make sure the baking soda isn’t clumpy when first adding). I used 1/2 cup per full load with great results.

    Liquid Detergents Note
    Soap will be lumpy, goopy and gel-like. This is normal. Just give it a good stir before using. Make sure soap is covered with a lid when not in use. You could also pour the homemade soap in old (and cleaned) laundry detergent bottles and shake well before each use.

    You can add between 10 to 15 drops of essential oil (per 2 gallons) to your homemade laundry detergent. Add once the soap has cooled to room temperature. Stir well and cover.

    Essential oil ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil
  5. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    All I use is baking soda in the wash water, vinegar in the rinse water.

    Everything gets clean. Smells great after drying on the line, but then living in a pine forest adds a really nice scent.
  6. HozayBuck

    HozayBuck Well-Known Member


    And the Owl poop?? :D:D:D
  7. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer


    Only if I leave the laundry hanging out over night! :)
  8. mdprepper

    mdprepper I sold my soul to The_Blob. He had candy...

    I plan to add oil to my next batch, but I wanted to try it out as written first. How much oil do you add to each batch when you make it? At what point do you add the oil? Could I take a small amount of my already made detergent and add oil to it now to see how I like it?
  9. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

    I add about 20 drops at the end of the recipe and mix ... My recipes calls for 1/2 cup per load ... so you may try adding a few drops (more or less) per load ... to see if you like it.

    I also add about 10 drops to my vinegar rinse water. It's not 'strong' and it comes out with just a "hint" of lavender.
  10. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

    I could use baking soda for some of the wash but when it comes to anything that has 'Virginia red clay :gaah: on it ... that stuff is a pain and needs something with a little more power. ;)

    (Where did I miss the part about the owl :scratch) lol
  11. Emerald

    Emerald Well-Known Member

    Bumping this up!:threadbump:
  12. partdeux

    partdeux Senior Member

    Thanks for the bump...

    What is your personal twist to the recipe?
  13. neldarez

    neldarez Supporting Member

    I just made laundry detergent for the first time but I made the powdered kind, it also has the fabric softener right in it...smells like lavender. Makes a huge amount....here it is:

    1 ( 3 lb) box Arm & Hammer washing soda
    1 (3 lb) container of oxyclean ( this is optional but I used it)
    2 ( 14.1 oz) bars of zote soap, or fels napa, I used the pink fels
    2 (2 lb) boxes of arm & hammer baking soda
    1-2 55 oz ( I had to get 2= 26) bottle or Purex crystals fabric softener. This was the hard thing for me to find, I bought the wrong stuff the 1st time, I bought fabric enhancer! not softener

    grate the soap, I put mine through my processor but it grated the pieces too long.
    Get yourself a bucket and take a small amount of each ingredient and layer it on top of each other then mix, this makes it so much easier. If you put the purex crystals in your mix, the cap is perfect for measuring, it has 3 lines on it, middle line is for reg. wash, about 2 tbs.
    I put a batch in the empty oxyclean container and the rest I stored in the bucket, I've shared with 2 people so far and they've really liked the smell!
  14. Emerald

    Emerald Well-Known Member

    I just found the pink zote soap and love it. the Smell is so nice and citrusy so I am buying a few here and there and storing them.
    I use one cup washing soda
    one cup baking soda(helps with hubs body odor
    one cup water softener salt
    one cup borax
    and 1/2 bar grated zote or grated fels. I've never heard of pink fels before.. gonna go and google!
  15. neldarez

    neldarez Supporting Member

    Emerald, I could have been mistaken and maybe it was pink zote...wow, now I don't know. It was one or the other and it was definitely pink!! It's heck to get old..........:eek:
  16. mamabear2012

    mamabear2012 Well-Known Member

    I've been making my own laundry soap for the last few months. I've only used a powdered form: 4 cups borax, 2 cups washing soda, 2 cups baking soda & two bars grated soap. I've used different types of bar soap. So far I like Ivory the best. I've also used rose scented Dove but the hubby thinks it smells too girly.
    I've really tried hard to make all of my own cleaning products lately. Pinterest has a TON of recipes.
  17. lazydaisy67

    lazydaisy67 Member

    I put Gain fragrance oil in mine. Smells just like the real stuff!!! It's all about the smell for me, but it cleans well too and my hubby's socks don't stink any more.
  18. Possumfam

    Possumfam Well-Known Member

    Hmmmm....I've been making my own laundry soap for a couple years now. Started w/ the powdered version, but it left a white residue, so I switched to a liquid/gel version. But mine only has 3 ingredients plus the water. Now y'all make me wanna try something else. I wonder if the baking soad or salt makes that much of a difference. I just made a 5 gal bucketful day before yesterday, so w/ my luck, in 6 mos, when I need more, I will have forgotten these recipes. Hmmmmmm......
  19. Possumfam

    Possumfam Well-Known Member

    Gain fragrance oil???? Where'd you get that? My DH loves gain and talks about switching over to the commercial stuff. If I could get this, she'd stay w/ the homemade.
  20. Emerald

    Emerald Well-Known Member

    Well poo.. here I was looking all over and didn't find it..
    So I am gonna have to say.. zote pink.. fels yellow! ;) and I am so having those senior moments lately. Could be the nasty antibiotics that I got to take.. I think the cure is worse than the cause..:eek:
    zote comes in different colors but we only have the pink around here. I think the zote is twice the size of the fels bar tho. but if I was doing to do the dry soap powder I would grate it as fine as I could and then try to dry it for a long time and then crumble it finer.. fels crumbles very fine for me but the zote is almost "greasy" or "waxy" and doesn't seem to melt into my water easily so I do the liquid soap route to make sure it is all melted properly and will disperse in the washer properly.