How To Make Your Own Laundry Detergent and Save $$!

As I was checking out at Wal-Mart today with all of my goodies to make my very own laundry detergent from scratch, I held an impromptu mini-seminar for the checkout lady and the customers in line with me! They were all shocked that you could really make your own detergent. Not only does it work just as well as store-bought detergent, it saves you big bucks! Here’s how I make mine:

1 bar Fels-Naptha soap

1 cup Washing Soda

1 cup Borax

1 cup Baking Soda

extras: OxyClean, Tea Tree Oil

First, gather your ingredients:

You’ll for sure need Borax, Washing Soda, Fels-Naptha, and Baking Soda. The OxyClean is for a bit of a booster if you have a particularly nasty load, and the tea tree oil is a great disinfectant, antifungal, antibacterial agent.

Grab a big ol’ bowl and start grating your Fels-Naptha bar down. Use the teeny side of your cheese grater for this.

You’ll end up with a bunch of soap that looks like grated cheddar cheese. Do not top your nachos with this, my friends!

Throw in a cup of washing soda.

Then pour in your cup of Borax.

And top it off with a cup of baking soda. This is an extra, and isn’t super necessary, but I add it for its cleaning and deodorizing properties.

Now whisk that bad boy up! Make sure you blend it in nicely. Your soap shavings wont break down, but just make sure they’re incorporated evenly.

BAM! Done. Yep, that’s it! This recipe makes about 4 cups of detergent, totaling 32/64 loads. If you have a top loader, use two tablespoons. HE front loader? No prob! Just use 1 tablespoon. Like I said above, I put in a few drops of Tea Tree Oil into the water stream of each load to get rid of germies and gunkies, and throw in a scoop of OxyClean if I have a seriously funkatory load of laundry (potty training … enough said).

Want to know how much money I save by using this as opposed to, say, Original Tide?

Cost of smallest box of Tide available (40 loads): $9.24

Cost per batch of homemade detergent as pictured above: $1.93

That averages out to just $0.03 per load when using 1 tablespoon! THREE CENTS. That’s just crazy talk. Crazy MONEY SAVING talk!

Comments

  1. Does this work for hard water? any idea?

    • Well, I have well water and a water softener, and it works well for me. If you have hard water, maybe experiment with adding a bit more Fels-Naptha. This recipe is super adjustable — you can use more or less of pretty much any ingredient to get the perfect blend for your water and preferences!

  2. Do you know if this is safe for cloth diapers?

  3. What a coincidence- we just made laundry detergent at my house yesterday! My recipe was similar, but it is a liquid detergent.

  4. I have been wanting to make my own laundry detergent, but never had a recipe and hadn’t gotten around to searching for one, glad I saw your post :)

  5. What is Fels-Naptha soap? Where would it be found in the store? With the laundry soap or body soap? I think I’ll give this a try, what a great way to save money!

    • I have seen the soap in both places at Kroger. It is a soap that I can remember my Grandmother using. I make this recipe but with water so it is a liquid.

    • It’s in the laundry aisle. Mine was near the OxyClean, Washing Soda and Baking Soda. And it’s only $.97 at my Wal-Mart! Cheapsies, for sure.

  6. I couldn’t find the Fels-Naptha any where here in kansas, but I did finally stumble upon it at Ace-Hardware :) Ive also heard you can use Zote Soap, but thats another one I cant find, some one told me to try online at Amazon. Might have to!