Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Very Low Cost Easy Homemade Laundry Soap

The last time I bought laundry soap I went to Costco and, as usual, bought three jugs.  Two are Tide HE for my front loading washer and one is Tide Cold Water Wash for my top loading 2nd washer (yes I have two washers but if you know the washer troubles I’ve had you’d have two too, and remember the nearest Laundromat is a looooong ways from me.)

Total cost for those three jugs was just over $75.00!  And then you have to lug the three bottles home all the while taking up precious space in the truck for other groceries.  What’s a girl to do?

The first thing I do is go to Tipnut.com.  There are so many tips and tricks there you’ll surely find something that will make your life easier and I knew I’d find something. :)  I found this: http://tipnut.com/10-homemade-laundry-soap-detergent-recipes/

The post was very long and detailed, especially with the amount of comments, but well worth the read.  I didn’t use a specific recipe but rather combined a few different ones to come up with an inexpensive homemade laundry soap.

Here’s what I did:

Grate one bar of pure soap into a pot.  MUST be pure soap, not Dove or a body soap.  I found Sunlight in the detergent aisle of our grocery store; 2 bars for $2.79.  I’m betting you can pick it up much cheaper than I can.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

Grate one bar in the pot, saving the other bar for next time.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

Finished grating.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

Add enough hot water to cover it and place on the stove MEDIUM-LOW heat.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

Eventually it will all melt, don’t worry about the little bits still in there.  Just before adding it to my jug I used my Braun hand mixer to whirl it smooth.

You’ll need 1 cup of Washing Soda (NOT baking soda).  In the detergent aisle it was $6.99.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

And 1/2 a cup of Borax. I’ve had Borax forever and I don’t have a clue what a box costs??

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

I also put in 1 tablespoon of Mrs. Stewart’s Liquid Bluing to whiten whites and makes clothes brighter.  Detergent aisle: $2.99.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

I recycled a cleaned out 5 gallon vegetable oil jug and filled it about a quarter way full of hot water.  Add the Washing Soda, Borax, and Bluing and shake until all powder is dissolved.  Add the melted soap, and shake again.

Fill with hot water.  This will be heavy!  I had an extra empty jug of Tide and poured off one bottle to keep at the washer and I’ll store the big jug away.  I think I’ll get at least four Tide jugs from this one jug.

Homemade Laundry Soap recipe (by KansasA)

I now have five gallons of laundry soap for well under $10!!  1/2 a cup is all you’ll need in your washer.  It’s low sudsing and it will be perfect in my front loading washer which requires that expensive He soap but I’ll also use it in my top loader as well.  This will gel over time so be sure to shake it every once in awhile.

I’ve done two loads of laundry in my front loader and the clothes smell ok and look clean…. I’m sold.  Your results may vary depending on your water, experiment and save lots of dollars.  Come back and let me know how it works for you. :)



Anonymous said...

Kansas...I have got a lot of GREAT tips from TIPNUT.COM and I'm sure your soap will be great....Pat

DK said...


tanita davis said...

Growing up, we never had "normal" detergent; we used Borax and/or baking soda, since they came in bulk boxes. Our clothes were unscented but clean.

The bluing is interesting; I don't think I've ever used that for actual washing. (I'm sure there's an art project somewhere in elementary school that used it, however!)

ennadoolf said...


...by the by, our previous washing machine was the same make/model/colour as the one in That 70s Show and guess where it is now? in the Museum of Science & Technology in Ottawa! :D

Crafty Gardener said...

Great idea. I like visiting Tipnut too, lots of interesting ideas there.

David T. Macknet said...

Awesome idea! Now, if only we had someplace to store a monster jug of soap....

Anonymous said...

i have a front loader and the salesman said i don't have to use the special "he" soap just use regular and a lot less of it. 5 years later and the washer is still going strong. a large box of tide (the maytag man said that dry soap is better) lasts almost a year.