Several years ago I made homemade laundry detergent, and I really liked it. The clothes came out clean, and fresh smelling. They didn’t have a strong perfume-y smell, they just smelled…clean. After that batch was done I never made it again, mainly because my family wasn’t into it. Wanting a cheaper, and safe detergent I am back. The first detergent I made was liquid and very soupy. This time I made a powdered and a thick liquid batch.
When it comes to the bar of soap, it is really up to your preference. I have used Dr. Bronner’s castille soap before, and I have heard good things about Zote and Fels Naptha. I decided to use Sappo Hill almond soap for these batches.
For the powdered batch, all you have to do it grate the bar of soap and mix in the borax, washing soda, and baking soda. I did put all of the ingredients into the Blendtec, but this step isn’t necessary. Once in the Blendtec, pulse it for about 15 seconds and your finished. Store the powdered detergent in any container with a lid.
For the thick liquid batch you will need 1 bar of soap, 1 cup of borax, 1 cup of washing soda and about 3 cups of not quite boiling water.
I didn’t add the baking soda this time. I call this a thick liquid, because when it’s done the consistency reminds me of thawed frozen Cool Whip, you know the kind that comes in a tub. I also used the Blendtec to mix this batch up, but I am sure a regular blender would do just fine.
For this batch you can either grate, shave, or chop up the soap. I shaved my soap up with a knife, because it was faster than grating. Put the soap in the Blendtec, and add 2 cups of the very hot water. Pulse it for a few seconds, until the soap is mostly dissolved. Add the washing soda, borax, and 1 more cup of the very hot water. Pulse this together for about 25 seconds, and when it is done it is thick and ready to store.
How much should you use? 1-2 tablespoons, per load of laundry. If it is a regular load, 1 tablespoon should be fine, but if it is a heavy soiled load I would use 2 tablespoons. I happen to do laundry at our local laundro-mat. I use 1 tablespoon in the regular top loaders, 4 tablespoons in the double front loader, and 6 tablespoons in the triple front loader. The powdered detergent can be added to the detergent compartment. The thick liquid needs to be added directly into the drum. Place your dirty laundry into the washer and then add the detergent right on top. When the washer cycle starts, it will be distributed. The detergent compartment in the laundro-mat machines has a very strong water flow, strong enough to break up the thick liquid detergent. At home machines do not have a strong enough water flow to break it up, and may possibly clog up the detergent compartment.
If you decide to DIY and make your own laundry detergent, let me know what you think.