08 July 2011

Frugal Friday: Laundry detergent

I'm always on the lookout for bargains on staples for my stockpile, but I usually come up empty-handed in the laundry department. I can never seem to find high efficiency detergent for less than about 15 cents per load, even on sale and with coupons. So naturally I wondered if it was something I could make myself. With Google's help, I discovered it's quite do-able! When I mentioned to my mother-in-law that I had started making my own laundry detergent, she told me she was going to buy me some Tide. My own mother just said, "Now that's interesting." Neither were convinced that a homemade detergent would work very well, yet both asked what I used to make it. It really couldn't be simpler. Just combine equal parts of:

Soap shavings (you could buy laundry soap, but I just used leftover scraps of Tom's bath soap. Hotel soaps would be good for this, too.)
Washing soda

And that's it! So far, the detergent is working really well, and I can't tell the difference between it and a commercial product. I also added OxiClean to the mix for extra whitening power, but that's optional. It's a low-suds solution so it's safe for front-loading washers, and it only costs a penny or two per load! You don't need very much - only need a couple of tablespoons per load. I use the scoop that came in my OxiClean container.

If you prefer liquid detergent, you use the same ingredients plus water. Basically you boil some water in a big pot on the stove, then melt your soap shavings in the water and add the washing soda and borax. Pour the mix into a 5-gallon container and fill with water, or until it's the consistency of your favorite commercial liquid. Use up to 1/4 cup per load.

1 comment:

Christina Banker said...

I might use this after I go through my 20 bottles of free detergent i scored a little while ago.