Homemade Laundry Detergent

I’ve been making my own laundry detergent for a couple of years now. I found the recipe for it on Modcottage – a site that sadly rode off into the sunset – so I thought I’d share. Making your own laundry detergent costs a fraction of what you’d pay for liquid detergent, there are no plastic bottles to recycle, and the best part – it cleans like a charm!

You will need:

  • 1 cup of Borax
  • 1 cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
  • 1 bar of Fels-Naptha soap
  • 1/2 cup of Oxy-Clean (I used a generic brand)

Grate the Fels-Naptha with a box grater or a food processor. If you can find a Salad Shooter on eBay, that’ll work too. Add the borax, washing soda, and Oxy-Clean – shake to combine. Use a tablespoon for small loads and two tablespoons (a coffee scoop) for large loads. Depending on the size of your loads you should get 25 to 50 loads from a batch. Warning – this detergent doesn’t produce any suds, but that’s okay, it will still get your laundry clean! No suds means it will also work in High Efficiency washers.

A few notes – you can find Fels-Naptha in most grocery stores, it’s usually in the detergent aisle, I’ve found some stores keep it with the bath soap. You can pre-treat by rubbing a dampened bar on stains. If you can’t find Fels-Naptha, try Zote or Kirk’s Hardwater Castile.

Update: Go here for a grate-free way of making detergent.


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4 Responses to Homemade Laundry Detergent

  1. Lori says:

    Hippy. 😉

  2. Tina says:

    * dabs patchouli on wrists *

  3. deb says:

    I have also used Ivory or Castile soap. What ever you do DO NOT add water to this and try to make it a liquid detergent – the oxy clean will not dissolve and just makes a boiling bubbling mess.
    If you want a liquid leave out the oxy clean

  4. Tina says:

    Thanks for the tip! I’ve researched other methods of making laundry detergent, and the liquid ones seemed too messy and time consuming to make.

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