Not sure why I picked today to make homemade laundry soap and natural hand soap (I will blog about that project soon). Sweet Baby has been sick and the last 4 nights have been some of the worst sleep in recent history. I think I needed to feel like I was accomplishing something outside of soothing a sick baby. I also think the 5 swallows of leftover Starbucks coffee this normally non-coffee drinker had might have been to blame.
Half of a bar of Fels-Naptha
1 cup-Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda (not baking soda)
1 cup-20 Mule Team Borax
2 gallons of water
Odds and Ends
Big pot OR small pot and bucket
Big spoon for mixing
Funnel (if putting finished product in something with a small opening)
Old laundry soap containers, clean bucket with lid, jar, etc. Something that is shakeable would be easiest since this tends to separate.
1) Cut bar of Fels-Naptha in half and grate. You can put other half in a zipper bag for later. Looks an awful lot like cheese…keep kids out of it!
2) Melt Fels-Naptha in a pot with 6 cups of warm water. Use low-medium heat and stir almost constantly.
3) Remove from heat. Add 1 cup of Borax and 1 cup of washing soda. Mix in and then add about 6 more cups of water. Mix again.
4) At this point you can poor laundry soap mixture into a big bucket if you have one and add remaining water totaling 2 gallons. If you already used 12 cups total you can add 4 more cups (16 cups in a gallon), and then another gallon of water. I used an old vinegar jug to measure my gallons and store some of my finished laundry soap. However you do it just make sure to mix or shake in your remaining water so that it all gets mixed.
Here is a shot of the mixing and melting of the ingredients before adding more water.
Hubs helped me funnel it into the big jug (old 1.5 gallon Costco laundry soap bottle) while I chowed part of a sandwich and took pics.
Ta DA! Over 2 gallons of laundry soap for super cheap!
Here is a rough idea of the cost to get started. I spent about $9 on the 3 materials and only used a small fraction of the Borax and washing soda. I have half of bar of Fels left to use next time and then I will need to buy more. It is only about $1.50 a bar.
I took a picture of the prices at the store on my camera and it is GONE. Sweet Baby might have had something to do with that. I saved the receipt, but the twins might have ripped it in half after carefully lifting it from the bag with their sweaty little toes. It is now on the floor in the back of the van. How is that for blog sabotage? When I care enough to dig it out of the van and do the math you will be the first to know.
I wanted to make an all natural batch, but could not find a recipe that got great reviews. I heard that using the castile soap might cause your clothes to fade and did not work well for some people. Let me know if you have found one you liked!
Now off to do some laundry and see how this stuff works! Thanks to my friend Vi for the sample of her batch and the encouragement to try it.
Have you ever made you own? Give it a try! It is super easy!