Monday, September 6, 2010

clean as a whistle: DIY laundry soap

Laundry soap can be expensive and filled with unknown chemicals and fragrances.  Why waste time in the grocery store cleaning aisle, when you can make your very own laundry soap!

It's crazy simple (only 3 ingredients!) and works like a charm.

What you need:
  • 1 cup borax (naturally-occurring mineral; cleaning agent)
  • 1 cup washing soda (sodium carbonate; water softener)
  • 2 cups finely grated soap (use up an old bar or castile (olive oil) soap bar)
  • mason jar (or other) and airtight lid to store finished soap

Borax and washing soda can be found alongside your laundry detergents in your grocery store.

I've used both Ivory soap (which grates nicely, but has additives) and Kiss My Face pure olive oil soap (produces curly green soap strings which look odd) and both work well.  Amanda Soule of Soulemama uses Dr. Bronner's castile soap bars with success (see her laundry soap recipe here).  Her recipe is the same as the one I used from David Suzuki Foundation's Queen of Green.

What to do:
Grate soap bar using your cheese grater.  Don't worry about getting soap on your grater - it's soap and will clean your grater before washing off.  Measure and mix three ingredients together in a jar.  So fast and simple!

Washing instructions:
Shake before use to make sure all ingredients are mixed.
  • 1 Tbsp for small load
  • 2 Tbsp for large load

Honestly, you don't need more!  Laundry detergent companies want us to use more so that we'll buy more!

We're several loads in, and I'm loving it!  Who doesn't love to save $$ and feel good knowing you made something yourself!

Optional: fabric softener
Throw in a cup of vinegar into the rinse cycle.. I have yet to try this, but apparently it does not leave a vinegar smell on clothes.


  1. Hi Treetop! I left a message for you on RAV.

  2. Hi Again treetop, I left you another message on RAV! Prairiegirlknits!

  3. Prairiegirlknits cyber stalking again! this time I know the message went I checked it! lol