Laundry detergent

We made our own. Yes. We. Did. And, it was fun! I got the recipe from a friend who has done so for a long time. Here is her post with the recipe which is probably much better as my post is geared more to the hilarity of the fact that Adam and I even did this. And, that I think we honestly will keep doing so. Just wait, people. You haven’t seen nothin’ yet. We are going to do great things in our future!

First, you may ask…what brought this on? Initially I was thinking of making our own soap. As in bars of soap. Primarily because my own skin is so freaking dry and I have been told at medical conferences that castile soap is the best soap for skin as far as bacteria goes and when I researched that I found that it, indeed is the oldest soap and in its purest form is also very good for dry skin. That, my kind friends is the key: “purest form”. I quickly decided making soap looked too hard. Then looked at Dr. Bronner’s soap (which is castile) and decided it was a bit pricey for as many bars of soap Adam and I go through…yes, yes I know there are only two of us but he takes two showers a day usually and we just go through a lot of soap. While in Lincoln, Adam found some soap at a natural food store and happily came home with his prize but couldn’t keep a grip on it in the shower….again “purest form”. Besides, I think he got glycerin soap. Lo’ and behold I find this for a mere buck.30 at our lil’ grocery:

Now I haven’t had a chance to try it yet because I’m finishing up my current bar so we’ll see. My point is that once my soap making tangent finished I was off on another tangent: laundry detergent.

I guess I still haven’t gotten to the whole point of this. Here it is. Adam and I have been doing a lot of thinking, discussing, reading….while we know we can’t change everything we are exposed to environment-wise, we would like to somewhat control what is within our own four walls. Well, as much as we can anyhow. When we leave the confines of our home each day we are placated with whatever it is they are needing to help the alfalfa and corn fields grow here locally, and much much more. We can never ever stop exposing ourselves from EVERYthing. But we can limit some things. For instance I learned recently that there are a few ingredients in the Mary Kay that I have used for years (and nothing against Mary Kay because they are in almost every other major brand too) that may cause miscarriages and birth defects if used for a prolonged period of time, of which I have for 15 years. So we are a little lost right now, that is all. Therefore we made laundry detergent. Detergent that isn’t even completely natural but it sure as heck is more natural than what we were using! And is way cheaper. In fact is only 4 cents per load!

Recipe-makes 5 gallons (you should be able to buy all four ingredients at your average grocery store unless you live where we do and then you will need to go to two or three places but never fear….you will succeed!).

  • One bar fels naptha soap (this CLEARLY says for laundry on there but you know how sometimes you just wonder about some people? Yeah, well some of those people stock shelves and put it with the body soap so if you can’t find it in the laundry aisle…check with the body soap)
  • One box borax (this will yield you 9 batches of this recipe)
  • One box washing soda (this will yield you 7 batches of this recipe and for peter’s sake do NOT go getting baking soda even though it is made by the same people!)
  • One bottle of plain (this is the key-must be plain-don’t go getting fancy schmancy) Dawn liquid dish soap.

You will also need a 5 gallon bucket with a lid, something long to stir with (hopefully something longer than a kitchen spoon which my stubborn Husband was determined was long enough and therefore used through the entire freaking process), a grater thingy of some sort-we just used an el-cheapo cheese grater and about 20 minutes total. Oh, and for us an old laundry detergent bottle because we don’t want to use the detergent out of the 5 gallon bucket! After we made this we looked on-line and found a zillion other recipes and ways you can alter this so go for it if you want but we love it so far. Alas, our adventure in photos…

Our Supplies Await Us!!!

Once this is grated, mix this in 4 cups of water in a saucepan...NOT boiling water. Must be hot but NOT boiling, otherwise you'll get a few chunks that are hard to break down. Yeah, uh huh...we learned the ol' hard way. You stir in the pan until it is all melted.

 While your fels-naptha is melting in the pan of water fill your 5 gallon bucket up half way with hot water. Dissolve 1 Cup Borax and 1 Cup of the Washing Soda in this. Then add the melted Fels naptha, mix. Then, fill the remaining way with hot water like the picture below but leave some stirring room for in the morning.

You mix everything together EXCEPT for the Dawn and then leave it sit this is right before we put the lid on and said "nighty night!"

It coagulates over night. This was totally AWESOME-it was like that goop stuff that you can buy for kids. I'm all about this kind of stuff. Kind of like this fantasy I have where I want to swim in a pool of M&Ms or jell-o. Anyway you stir and stir and stir until this is smooth again.

Mix in 1/4 cup dawn

We could have been done butttt, we want to use our old container so here we are....and it was easy to do.

I love being able to still use the same container! The only thing is that before each load we have to take it out and rotate the container a couple of times to re-mix things and then put it back but that is okay. Otherwise, you would normally use 1/2 cup for a top-loader washer, 1/4 cup for a front-loader. Or for us it is counting to three Mississippi


3 thoughts on “Laundry detergent

  1. This brought back a memory from when I discovered a bar of lye soap in my grandmother’s attic. She’d made this lye soap 50 years previously and saved it all those years as it was her last one.

  2. You two are so funny but if it works for you who am I to judge.
    It amazes me what you two do to entertain yourselves!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Love and Miss You Both

  3. Tyler sold his soap to department stores at $20 a bar. Lord knows what they charged. It was beautiful. We were selling rich women their own fat asses back to them.

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