1.17.2011

Homemade Laundry Soap 101


Homemade laundry soap is one of the simplest changes I have made that not only saves me money (it quite literally costs tenths of pennies per load), but also lets me live a little greener by elminating some not-so-nice chemicals from my weekly routine. This became extra important to me a few months ago when I realized that my skin had become very sensitive to regular bathroom soaps and detergent. Ouch. When I went to research my options for replacing our current products with something less aggravating to my skin, I couldn't find an option that was natural, and hopefully more gentle, while at the same time fitting my budget. Enter homemade.

 Homemade Laundry Soap
1 cup 20 Mule Team borax
1 cup Arm & Hammer washing soda
1 bar Ivory soap, finely grated
 Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Store in an airtight container. Use 1 tablespoon of laundry soap per load of laundry (2 for extra big or extra dirty ones).

That's it. Really.

 I do have one word of caution. Be sure to grate the soap extra fine. I use this grater and it works like a charm. Grating the soap very fine is important because if you don't the soap flakes won't fully dissolve and will leave little white flecks on your clothes (especially if you're a cheapy like me who loves to wash all her clothes on the cold/cold cycle).  Your clothes will be clean, just a little speckled.

Also, please feel free to use other brands of borax, washing soda, and 100% pure soap. I've included the exact brands that I use because whenever I try a new homemade cleaning recipe I'm always in a panic that it won't come out right unless I know the exact brands the original recipe called for. I've been known to stand in an aisle for twenty minutes debating the pros and cons of name-brand vinegar over generic (I mean, this is chemistry, right? Something could potentially explode). Hopefully, you don't overthink as much as I do, but if you do then go with the 20 Mule Team, Arm & Hammer, and Ivory. They work. I promise.

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