How to Make Homemade Laundry Soap
You'll need 3 products, all found in the laundry section of the grocery store:
- Fels Naptha Laundry Soap (1 bar grated)
- Borax (1 1/2 Cup)
- Washing Soda (NOT to be confused with Baking Soda) (1 1/2 Cup)
You'll also need 2 empty gallon sized containers to store your laundry soap in. I used 2 left over, "family sized" plastic ice cream pails, which are just a little over 1 gallon each.
|Ice cream pails. . .of laundry soap!|
Don't worry about exact container sizes or precise amounts of water. What I've learned is that the process isn't an "exact science," which is something that frustrated me when I first tried to make it. I am so glad I found this recipe because for some reason, it all made sense! So, the only thing I changed was the container size. The original recipe makes 5 gallons and I don't have a 5 gallon bucket, so I used what I had. That simply means mine is more concentrated.
- Grate a bar of Fels Naptha, just like you would a block of cheese (or use your food processor if you'd like).
- Fill a dutch oven type of pot half way with WARM water (about 2-3 quarts) and put on medium heat; add grated soap.
|This is the pot I used. . . nothing fancy.|
- Stir until the soap is melted. Then add the Borax and the Washing soda. Stir just enough to combine the ingredients evenly. *Keep a watchful eye to prevent the overflow of suds all over the place. If it starts to bubble up, lower the heat setting.
- Once the soap has melted, turn the heat down to medium-low and let the pot of soap sit on the stove for 20-30 minutes so that it thickens.
- Meanwhile, BOIL a tea kettle full of water. Again, no exact measurement, but I filled mine up to just under the spout. (Turns out it's about 6 cups, or 1.5 quarts.)
- Place your empty containers in the sink for safe pouring and mixing. Pour the boiled water evenly into the 2 containers, then add the soap in equal amounts to each pail. Stir well.
- Next, fill each pail up gradually with COLD water from the faucet, continuing to mix well as you fill. It will make a few suds, but just stir the suds right back into the soap mixture.
- You should end up with a thick, almost gel or custard-like consistency. Let the soap sit uncovered overnight (24 hrs.) to set.
|Custard look of the finished product.|
Again my "recipe" is more concentrated but so far, so good. It works well, even on my husband's stinky exercise clothes! (Sorry, honey--LOL!) I use 1/8 to 1/4 cup per load, depending on size and how soiled the laundry is. I still use my other laundry additives as I always do (such as bleach, ammonia, dryer sheets, etc.). I'm working on homemade alternatives for those! :o)
I was intrigued by making my own laundry soap simply because I found the whole process interesting! Who knew? I'd been walking past these items for years in the store and never knew what they could be when mixed together. Also, making your own soap is cost effective. Laundry detergent can be extremely expensive, especially when you have kiddos and loads that seem to never end! If you go to the original recipe, you'll find a general break down of how much it costs per load--I'm talking cents per load!!
|My daughters decorated the lids. :o)|
I'm not an expert at this, but I'll be glad to answer as many questions as I can.