Homemade Laundry Soap

07/18/2012 7:02 pm · 2 comments

by Sarah A Thrifty Mom

This is a post my friend Lori did on her blog Moms By Heart. She has a great blog out of Texas, make sure you check it out. She has great ideas, she even makes her own laundry soap. I have many friends that do this. They all swear it works great, and it is super Thrifty!
Homemade Laundry Soap

With a family of seven, laundry is a big part of my life. Despite the fact that I have a huge high efficiency washer, I’m stillĀ  doing an average of two loads per day. So when it was time to trim the fat from our budget, laundry soap was one of the first things I looked at for savings.I found several recipes, and most sounded pretty messy. As much as I want to save, I have no interest in standing over a stove stirring big batches of soap. But finally I came across this recipe that sounded pretty easy and decided to give it a try. I’m happy to report that I’ve been using it now for 9 months, and I give it a two thumbs up!

Here’s what you need:

2 Cups finely shredded bar soap (about one 4.5 oz bar)
1 Cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
1 Cup 20 Mule Team Borax

Each batch makes 4 cups laundry detergent and costs approx $.95-$1.00 to make. I use 2 tablespoons per load – yielding me 32 loads per batch ($.03 per load). This is for a super capacity washing machine!!! I make about 8-10 batches at a time so I don’t need to bother with it very often.

THINGS TO REMEMBER:
– Stock up on bar soap when it’s on sale. My favorite is the Walgreens Gentle Bar. This goes on sale occasionally for $.25. It shreds nicely and doesn’t have an overpowering scent. I have also used Ivory and Fels Naptha.
– The Washing Soda and Borax are usually found on the top or bottom shelf in the laundry aisle (never at eye level). In my area, Washing Soda is $2.99 for 55 ounces. Borax is $3.59 for 76 ounces. I find both at Wal Mart.

Wanna save even more? Recently I sent an email to Borax HERE complimenting them on their product and asking for coupons. They sent me 10 coupons for $1.00 off! Doesn’t hurt to ask!

My 6 year old was put to work today shredding soap! This is the most unpleasant part of the process because it can be a bit messy. It also produces a strong soap smell – don’t worry, your clothes won’t smell like this. Luckily this detergent lasts so long that I only need to make it every 3-4 months.

Find a plastic container with a tight-closing lid to store your detergent. This one use to hold my household file folders!

If you try this, I’d love to have your feedback! I don’t miss the store brands at all!
Although I must confess that I do miss the smell of Downy Liquid fabric softener. It’s one of the things I miss the most since revamping our budget. If anyone has a recipe for this, I’m happy to give it a try!

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Leave a Comment: 2 comments

Filed Under: Cleaning & Organizing Tips, DIY, Thrifty ways to save

27 comments
CarolJMaia
CarolJMaia

love it! works for me-no more buying laundry detergent!

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This is my first time i visit here. I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here! keep up the good work.

Lindsay
Lindsay

can you use this recipe in an HE washer????

Ingard
Ingard

I have used homemade laundry soap in mine.

Stacy
Stacy

It costs about the same (if not cheaper) to buy laundry detergent with coupons, but I want to try this for fun :)

Rupi
Rupi

I wish I had seen this recipe earlier as I just did a blog on My 4 Favourite Ways to Stay Clean and Be Green! I did not include laundry detergent as I was focused mainly on the many uses of white vinegar and did not see anything about using it in the laundry other than as a bleach and softener replacement. I guess that means I'll just have to do a follow-up and quote Lori's recipe. :) Also I would love to know about the all-natural soap as well as that would be preferrable...

Kristina
Kristina

I would like to use an all natural bar soap. Is there any one you would recommend that would wash clothes great?

johnvikram48
johnvikram48

HI, I actually loved the post. Im certain its going to be very helpful to me. Its always a pleasant surprise whenever a post is both beneficial and enjoyable! Thank you for bothering to explain all this out for folks.

Vickie
Vickie

I'm going to try this tomorrow. I bought all the stuff tonight. Mandy how do you mix the dawn in with it? Does it not make a big blobby mess? I'm very new to this and am trying to learn all I can. Thank you for your blogs!

Rhonda
Rhonda

If you have a septic tank, do not make the dry powder recipe. Use the liquid recipe!! I had to have mine pumped today!! The first thing he told me was no dry laundry or dish water powders! LIQUID ONLY!!

Patty momof5
Patty momof5

I've thought about making my own ..for years..I just think its much easier Comping n using coupons ..I get mine almost free or free a lot.I'm afraid of having the borax around with my younger kids too.

Robin
Robin

I just checked out the Duggar recipe for laundry soap and she says that "-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil.".

Holly
Holly

Thanks Glenda for the reply!!! I may try a batch just to see....An expert at something was also a beginner!! lol

Chrystal Thompson
Chrystal Thompson

I have been making laundry soap for over a year now. I also have a family of 7 and buying baby detergent or free and clear detergent was quite pricey and still had chemicals in it that I didn't want. I use a similar recipe except I buy a natural soap in bulk and I also add citric acid. I would also recommend using baking soda, borax and citric acid for the dish washer and hand washables.

Glenda
Glenda

Holly, I don't think the Olay soap will work. I think it has too much oil or lotion or something. I thought about using it too, but I don't think it would work. I would like to know if anyone else has tried it.

Glenda
Glenda

I have been making laundry soap for a couple of years now. I use 1 bar of Ivory soap (I cut it up and put it in a microwave safe bowl and cook it for 90 seconds)It will fluff up, let it cool and mix with 1/2 cup Washing Soda and 1/2 cup of Borax. I make 4 or 5 batches at a time. I use 1 tablespoon for each wash load.

meme
meme

As far as a laundry softner. I saw a post where you use watered down cheap conditioner.

Holly
Holly

I plan on making this this weekend....Does it matter what type of soap you have??? I stocked up on the Olay moisture bar and was curious if I cold use that??? Sounds so simple and easy to make....Can not wait!!!

Becca
Becca

I make my own laundry soap all the time. But I make it liquid instead. If you don't make it liquid, you have to use hot water to wash your clothes in order to melt the grated soap! Not very efficient at all. You would spend as much money on hot water as you would buying liquid laundry soap! Here's my recipe: 1 Bar of laundry soap (I like Fels-Naptha) 1/2 Cup Borax 1 Cup Washing Soda 1 Bottle Dawn Dish Soap Grate the Bar of soap (I use my Kitchen Aid with the grater attachment) and boil in four cups of water until dissolved- Take off heat. Stir in Borax and Washing Soda until Dissolved. I then pour it into a 4 gallon bucket (I think the original recipe said 5 gallon bucket, but I only had a 4 gallon)and add Hot water until fairly close to the top of the bucket. Then add the Dawn Dish Soap. Stir well. I like to use old laundry soap containers and refill them up with my homemade soap and store them that way. Also, as one little note...I don't add the Dawn until last, because of experience. I once added it earlier and when I added the rest of the water to the bucket it bubbled up like crazy! It was very messy. This way there is no mess. I don't use very much of this soap, and it lasts me several months, and saves me a lot of $$.

Connie
Connie

Just wondering if you can use your recipe for laundry soap for the clean and clear type laundry soap ?

Terri
Terri

I can't wait to try this! Although my kids are grown and gone, saving money is saving money! I am a little confused with some of the posts. I see where some have said they use the same recipe as above, but add Dawn dish soap. If the recipe is for a "dry" cleaner how does the Dawn fit in it??

ALI
ALI

I use the Duggar family (19 kids and counting) recipe. It is similar but it makes 5 gallons of liquid soap. Homemade laundry soap is a huge money saver!

Jennifer
Jennifer

I make our laundry soap too. With 4 boys we were going through a ton of it and the savings has really added up. I use the same recipe you posted above, but I also make the liquid/gel version. I think I am going to try adding the Dawn to it as well next time I make some.

Tara
Tara

I make my families laundry soap. I actually turn it into a thick gel type and it makes 5 gallons. I only have to make our soap every 3 to 5 months. I use all the same ingredients as you except I substituted the borax with White Vinegar.

Lorrie
Lorrie

Great! Another use for Borax. I use about a half cup in my dishwasher because of hard water to actually get my dishes clean. I will try this. Thanks!

Suzy
Suzy

I also use this. I use a food processor to grate the soap. It's SUPER FAST! I'm curious about he dawn dish soap addition Mandy? This homemade recipe is great to use in all "HE" washer also.

Mandy
Mandy

This is the recipe I used..but I also added a bottle of Dawn dish soap...it helped get the clothes even cleaner!

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