Monday, July 5, 2010

Good clean fun

I know what you're thinking. Homemade laundry detergent? Is that really necessary? Of course it's not, but it is kind of fun, and very inexpensive. I found basic recipes here, and liked the powdered recipe. Because who really wants to cook soap when you could use dry? I like to make stuff, but it shouldn't be hard. Here is the recipe I used, with ingredients I could find. 1 bar Zote laundry soap (14 oz.) grated -about 4 cups 2 cups Borax 2 cups washing soda (sodium carbonate) also called soda ash or "ph Up" in the swimming pool section. NOT baking soda. Mix together well. You may want to pulse a little at a time in a blender or food processor so the Zote is very fine. Then, that's it! Use 2 TB per large load of laundry. I've seen lots of additions to the recipe, such as adding salt if you have hard water, Oxyclean for extra whitening, using Fels Naptha soap or Ivory soap instead of Zote, baking soda, essential oils for scents. Do what works for you!

The Zote soap does have a citronella scent, but it does not transfer to clothes. My clothes come out smelling like... cotton? No artificial smell at all, just clean.

So here is the price breakdown. My old laundry detergent boasted that each box could wash 95 loads, but reading the fine print I discovered that meant 95 small loads. I don't know many mothers of young children who wash small loads of laundry. So after doing some math, I determined that my old laundry detergent cost 25 cents per large load. My new laundry soap costs 8 cents per large load. And, I can get the price down even more if I find a better price for the sodium carbonate - I think my local Ace Hardware will order Arm and Hammer washing soda for me. I had to use "ph Up" in the swimming pool section, and it was a little more pricey.

I have found this recipe works just as well as my old brand. So want to give it a try?


Maxmomma said...

LOVE it! From peaches to homemade soap- great stuff. I am impressed by the price difference on the detergent- 1/3 of the price... pretty amazing. How did canning the peaches go?

mindyluwho said...
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mindyluwho said...

I ordered my Arm and Hammer through Ace, it is much cheaper that way. Also, I have done both the powdered and the liquid and like them both. The liquid is not hard to make, it only takes about 10 minutes and actually is cheaper than the powdered, about 1 cent per load. The recipe I use makes a little bigger batch so I have a food storage bucket that I keep it in, then have a little pourable container that I refill.

liza said...

I have been making homemade laundry soap for a few years now. My parents travel alot, so I get lots of little hotel soap bars for free, and I use them all! Almost any soap will work! In fact I wash my hand-knit woolens in Borax only.
I am so excited to find your blog, Tamlynn, we have lots of common interests.
Love and light to you
Kate Talley