How To Make Your Own…

Happy Friday everyone!!   We made it :)  With almost 1 week of 2013 under our belt, I started reflecting on things.  A week from tomorrow marks the 5 year anniversary when my family uprooted and moved from Oklahoma to Virginia.  What an adventure it has been.  My hubby originally came to be the Involvement and Small Groups Minister and that position has evolved into the full time Pulpit Minister.   God has an amazing way of working His plan.  

When we first moved here, I noticed a few things there were different in Virginia. There’s one conversation I had with some mom’s that stands out in my mind.  We were on a playdate with our kiddos (I only had one at the time) and a couple of moms were discussing laundry detergent and cleaning supplies.  Now, that might sound boring to you, but what caught my attention is that they were making their own laundry detergent and other cleaning supplies.  This was a totally foreign concept to me.  At the time, I believe I might have even inwardly rolled me eyes!  It sounded like a lot of work & for me, it was just easier to drive to the store & pick it up.  It was a little too hippy, granola-y  :)

Fast forward almost 5 years.  I’m surfing Pinterest and I find this pin.  I’ve seen other “recipes” for laundry detergent on Pinterest before, but this was the first powdered kind I’ve seen.  Reviews of the liquid detergents haven’t been too great, but this one seemed different.  I checked it out and thought, why not??

I took a look at the ingredients.  I already had a partial box of OxyClean and Borax from another “project” (Check out “You Gotta Check Your Pockets!”).  The blog with the recipe shows that it makes a lot of detergent, so before I made full batch, I thought I’d better make a little, just to make sure I liked it.  I cut the recipe in half, and this is what I got:

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It filled an entire OxyClean box, the bottle that the Purex came in & part of a gallon size ziplock baggie…and this was half!!  I figure the costs (keep in mind, I already had 2 of the more expensive ingredients) were about $8, give or take a few.

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This is the amount I use for a large load.  You can use the Purex bottle cap to measure out the detergent.  I’m also using the scoop that came with the OxyClean.  Keep in mind, this won’t produce suds…and that’s ok…it’s not supposed to!

So far, I have done at least 10 loads of laundry…some big, some small.  I started out using the soap in the ziplock baggie.  There is still a lot left in it, so I imagine this will last me a long time.  

I waited to write this blog, because I wanted to see if anything reacted to our skin, and so far, nothing.  The laundry is coming out clean.  I don’t know if I’m imagining things, but some of the white wash rags I have seem brighter (maybe due to the OxyClean?).  I even washed my hubby’s stinky gym clothes & they came out clean and non-stinky :)

When I was hearing these moms talk about making their own cleaning supplies, I thought “who has time for that?”  Well, when I went to prepare the laundry detergent, I timed myself.  I did take a short cut.  Instead of grating the bar of soap, I used my food processor.  Note:  If you do that, you will want to cut the bar into small pieces…about the size of fudge.  That really made the job a lot easier.  The whole process to make the detergent took me about 20 minutes or so.  I did mix it in a big, 5 gallon bucket.  At first, I was trying to stir with a large wooden spoon, but later, I decided to just dig in and use my hands to mix it up.  I felt that worked really well.

My only complaint is that I wasn’t too crazy with the scents that Purex has available.  I did read some comments where some were thinking about using Downey Unstoppables or the Gain version.  I think those smell better (although, they’re a bit more pricey).  

So, my verdict right now??  Keep using it…see how long it lasts…and how our clothes look over a longer amount of time.  I have to say, I do feel a bit of Domestic Engineer pride…knowing I MADE my own laundry detergent :)

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4 Comments

  1. Connie McClenny

    What is your recipe for making your dry laundry detergent? Thanks

    • I got the recipe from this website: http://www.howdoesshe.com/cheaper-and-better-diy-laundry-detergent/

      This is what she (and I) used…my batch was 1/2 of everything & it made a lot!:

      1 (4 lb 12 oz) Box of Borax- Found in the detergent aisle
      1 (3 lb 7 oz) Box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda- Found in the detergent aisle
      1 (3 lb) Container of OxyClean- Found in the detergent aisle. (This is optional but I highly recommend adding it)
      2 (14.1 oz) Bars of Zote Soap- Found in the detergent aisle (I couldn’t find Zote, so I used Fels Naptha). This is what you have to grate. I used my food processor. If you don’t cut the bar of soap up into small pieces, they will get stuck on your blades and it won’t work. If you use a cheese grater, they recommend using the fine side.
      1 (4 lb) Box of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda- Found in the cooking aisle (You could also get two 2 lb box, we couldn’t find the larger 4lb box when we went)
      1-2 (55 oz) Bottle of Purex Crystals Fabric Softener- Found in the detergent aisle (This is 100% optional).

  2. Awesome!!! I have wanted to try this but have not yet! I have heard the fels naptha or even ivory is good.

    • Yeah…from other comments I read, it looks like you can use almost any type of bar soap you want/prefer.

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