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I made my own laundry detergent
KCAimee posted:
Last month I switched to an earth friendlier laundry detergent and decided to try my hand at making it myself. I made some on Sunday and was shocked at how easy it was......and how cheap!!! Here is the recipe I used:

3 cups grated Fels Naptha soap ( 1 1/2 bars. found this in laundry a laundry/stain bar)
1 1/2 c washing soda (also found in laundry aisle)
1 1/2 c borax (same)

My Wal Mart only had the borax but I found the Fels Naptha and washing soda at my local grocery store.

I stored it in a ziploc bag. The recipe said use 1 tablespoon per load for light dirt. I've been using 1 1/2 tablespoons. Did a few loads on Sunday and no big problem with stains (beyond what I usually have).

It takes getting used to because there is no smell on the clothes when they come out but they smell clean. I also use vinegar in my fabric softener thing and like it. This is also a low sudsing detergent so it is safe for front loaders and HE machines.

I think that all in all the detergent cost about $2 to make (have tons of borax and washing soda left for next batches) so I'm hoping I will keep loving it! I did buy some fragrance oils to add for a scent (even with the scent the clothes come out smelling like nothing...but the detergent smells nice) but the fels naptha has a nice smell so I didn't use the oils.
gemini5324 responded:
Thanks for the recipe! I am just about out of laundry soap & was debating trying my own. What is the brand of washing soda? Is is like arm & hammer baking soda or something else?
Megan, Kevin, Gabe
sarahaguirre responded:
If you happen to use this on CD's let me know. I'll be running out of my all natural soap and was wondering what to use next.
KCAimee responded: is not baking it is made by arm and hammer but it is a yellow box.

Sarah...I have big box of Tide that I'm using up on my CD's so I don't think I'll get to use it on my diapers....I might try it though to see how it does!

Here is the site I used:
MontanaMama2009 responded:

I, too, have made my own laundry detergent. It was very cheap to make.

1 bar of soap (grated)
1 cup Borax
3 cups baking soda

I used Ivory soap, which does leave a nice scent behind. No sudsing whatsoever, which was weird, but clothes came out very clean.

I used this on Nettie's cds (short time since she potty-trained a few loads after I made this) and she didn't have a problem.

I haven't heard of fels naptha, but I'm sure that would be an even better alternative to the bar of soap.

In the end, I bought "Method," all-natural products. It's a pump bottle, so I pump it 4 times for a regular load of laundry, and 6 times for heavily soiled or extra-large loads. And then I purchased all-natural dryer sheets, as well.

But I still have that leftover box of Borax (which I clean sinks with), and a HUGE box of baking soda...which gets rid of toilet bowl stains.
Me, DH of 16 years, DD1 (15yo), DD2 (10yo), DD3 (nearly 2), a labrador, a tabby cat, a lop-eared bunny, and goldfish! Life is grand!
MontanaMama2009 replied to MontanaMama2009's response:
I think I mixed up the recipe a bit...I'd have to go home and double-check...
Me, DH of 16 years, DD1 (15yo), DD2 (10yo), DD3 (nearly 2), a labrador, a tabby cat, a lop-eared bunny, and goldfish! Life is grand!
KCAimee replied to MontanaMama2009's response:
YEah, the fels naptha is an actual laundry bar and stain remover so I thought that would work great. Here's what it looks like:

I saw on the borax box that it is good for washing all kinds of things.

It did take me a bit to get used to the no suds...but they say the suds don't do any cleaning. Kind of like taking a bath vs a bubble bath. The bubbles don't clean you :)
katieb426 responded:
You might have convinced me to try it, Aimee. So it is cheaper than using a store brand? We use ALL and get it at Sam's. But I'm all for saving money. I don't care much about scent either. We dry lots of our laundry outside and there is no comparison to that scent!
sarahann1978 responded:
I used to use the Fels Naptha on diaper blow outs when DS was BF, you know the liquid yellow mustard poops. It took stains out wonderfully. I would be interested to try to make it into detergent, I bet it does a good job.
Sarah (31), DH(29), DS (Jan. 09)
gemini5324 replied to KCAimee's response:
I add borax to all my laundry- it works kind of like Oxiclean, but is more eco-friendly. It does great for stains as well if you make it into a paste & apply directly to the stain.
Megan, Kevin, Gabe
KCAimee replied to katieb426's response:
You can do it Katie!!!! It was so stinkin easy. The Fels Naptha was about $1.20 per bar and I used 1 1/2 bars in 1 batch. I don't recall the price on the borax or the washing soda but they were both cheap. Definitely under $4 for each and you only use 1 1/2 cup per batch (which is suposed to do 90 loads) so there is a ton for more batches. So, I would estimate it to be $2.50-$3 cost for 90 loads much cheaper!!!
KCAimee replied to gemini5324's response:
I'll have to try adding it directly to the stain. If I have a tough stain I usually make a paste of detergent and let it set on there and I have great luck with that.
jlc78 responded:
Alright. You might have convinced me to try it too. I'm almost out of detergent and need to buy some anyway. Maybe I'll give it a shot!
Me (31) DH (33) and our 2 beautiful babes DS (6/07) and DD (9/08)
KCAimee replied to jlc78's response:
Yay!!! You can do it! If you use this recipe just make sure to get washing soda and not baking soda. I'm loving it so far!!!

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