Whether you’re looking to save a few bucks on your grocery bill, can’t find a laundry detergent you really like without all the harsh chemicals or just like experimenting with homemade DIY items you can do yourself, this all-natural laundry detergent is the perfect solution!
A lot of laundry detergent recipes include the use of Borax, a natural mineral which is the cause of much debate over whether it’s actually safe or not. There are studies to support both sides, but I wanted to make a detergent that errs of the side of caution for those of you who are on the fence or choose not to use Borax. And I didn’t have any at home anyway when I needed to make some detergent, so I didn’t really have a choice.
I found this recipe from Cassie @ BackToHerRoots.com and loved the simplicity of it. Having made my own laundry detergent before, I thought it looked like a good recipe that would really work. The only thing I changed was using washing soda, instead of baking soda. Homemade washing soda is simple to make and only takes one ingredient- baking soda. To turn baking soda into washing soda, you simply have to bake it in the oven. Check out this post from Jillee @ OneGoodThingByJillee.com for further instructions.
This detergent works great, although the true test will be when my husband goes back to landscaping this spring. I’m hoping it will still be just as good when his clothes are covered in mud and smell like cow poo from all the mulch. I may have to up the amount of essential oils and add some lavender in the future, but the Purify oil in this mix helps to elimate odors and cleanse, so I think this recipe should still work just fine. The lemon oil does the same as well as helps to remove stains and kill bacteria and other microorganisms that may be on the clothes.
Here is the super simple recipe:
- 1 gallon of water (2 cups of this will need to be very hot
- 1 cup Dr. Bronner’s Baby Mild Liquid Castile Soap
- 1 cup Baking Soda OR Washing Soda (made from baking soda in the recipe above)
- 1/3 cup Salt (not pictured)
- 5 drops Purify Essential Oil Blend (Listed under Oil Blends)
- 10 drops Lemon Essential Oil (listed under Single Oils)
- 1 gallon jug
- Printable label (you can print from BackToHerRoots where this recipe came from)
- In a large mixing bowl, stir the baking soda into the hot water.
- After the baking soda has dissolved, stir the salt into the mixture.
- Add the castile soap and stir until all of the ingredients are mixed together well.
- Pour the liquid into your gallon container and fill until the container is nearly full, adding water slowly so you don’t lose all of the lighter ingredients out of the jug.
That’s it! You have your very own homemade laundry detergent! Simple give it a good shake before each use.
The cost of this detergent per load equals about 12 cents which breaks down like this:
- Dr. Bronner’s Soap: $2.50
- Baking Soda: $.40
- Salt: $.20
- Essential oils: $.80
- 1 gallon tap water: >1 cent
TOTAL – $3.90
LOADS PER GALLON- 32 (use 1/2 cup per load)
You can probably get more than 32 loads out of each gallon. I would probably start with just 1/4 of a cup per load (which would give you 64 loads per gallon, making each load just 6 cents) and use more if you find your clothes aren’t getting as clean as you’d like. Considering that detergents range from about $.06 per to load to over $.30, this homemade detergent is on the cheaper end and even if it comes out to about the same price of your current detergent, there is a lot to be said for knowing exactly what ingredients are going into your detergent- especially if you have kids with any skin sensitivities.