Homemade Laundry Soap
Okay, so I know fully that some of you will deem me crazy with this post. Really? Homemade laundry soap? Why the hassle? Does it really work?
I've been wanting to try to make laundry detergent for a long time. But then I think...I always buy laundry detergent with a coupon, so it's not really that expensive. And I always think, if I go through an extensive labor in the kitchen, then I'd like to be able to eat it.
Just randomly today, as I was shopping for laundry detergent, I decided I would give making it a go. I also picked up some commercial detergent in case my idea backfired. In typical Jackie fashion, I don't just give a recipe a try. Instead, I devise my own through researching. I perused the internet, looking for examples of ideas. I consulted 10 different recipes and then hid them all and devised my own, using ivory soap (which creates a bit of nostalgia for me, as my grandparents used ivory soap for guests at their Blue Top Motel).
Here's what I did:
Jackie's Homemade Laundry Detergent
3 1/2 gallons water
1 bar of ivory soap
3/4 cup washing soda
3/4 cup borax
1) Bring 1/2 gallon of water to a boil.
2) Grate the soap. I used my kitchen aid grader attachment.
3) Wisk in the soap in the boiling water. Simmer until completely dissolved.
4) Add the washing soda and borax. Wisk until dissolved.
5) Add it to 3 gallons of hot tap water (I had the 3 gallons of water waiting in a 5 gallon bucket). Stir.
6) Divvy up the detergent into smaller canisters if desired. Let set before use (it turns into a gel).
Use 1/2 cup of detergent for each load of laundry, 1/4 cup for HE washers.
This was very, very easy. Took 35 minutes from start to completion, and I was doing other things around the house while making it. And like with most things, the more you do it, the quicker you get at making it. And I think it works great! And as an added bonus, all of the supplies come in paper packaging. No extra plastic will need to be manufactured for our laundry needs from this point forward. How cool is that?!
Note...it does separate. You can prevent much separating by mixing it with a burr mixer once set. You can also throw a few marbles in the container and mix it up by shaking or 1/4 cup of gel and then one 1/4 cup of liquid per load. I've also used it for spot treatment...dipping the area that got a spot on it in the liquid to pre treat it before washing. I hope you're as impressed as I am with the results.
Cost: I spent $9.51 for all the supplies, and I can make 3 gallons of detergent 10 times with what I bought. Since I am a nerd, I did the math. That will equal 3840 loads of laundry, costing less than a quarter of a penny a load. Compare that with low to high end commercially available products- Purex was $0.20 load; Tide was $0.30 load. If you do one load of laundry a day for a year, making your own will save you a minimum of $70-$105.
Needless to say, I will be returning the $8.00 commercial laundry detergent that I bought.