Sunday, September 9, 2012

A Year's Worth of Laundry Soap...I"ll give it a try!

I did it...I took the plunge. I jumped on the bandwagon...I made my own laundry detergent. And it smells so good that I could sniff that jar all day long (don't worry...I'm not!)

So far, I've done 2 loads of clothes...and I'm pleased with the results. The clothes came out smelling and looking clean.

I had been contemplating the liquid version for quite some time, but the thought of storing over 5 gallons of that stuff at a time seemed daunting. Not to mention, I would need a pot just for cooking/melting my soap. When I came across this powder version and heard some great reviews, I thought I would give a try.

The recipe I chose to follow includes oxyclean as well as some fabric softening crystals. I followed this post for the instructions. She claims that this lasts her family for close to a year. We do a lot of laundry in this house with all my husband's work clothes. So, I am curious to see how long this lasts us.

On my last trip to Walmart, I purchased my supplies. The original poster said this cost her $30. Without using any coupons and only purchasing my items at Walmart, mine only cost $24. All the items except for the Purex Crystals were even on the same shelf beside each other.

  • 3 Bars Fels Naptha, grated (see my tip below) -- $0.97 each (approx. $3)
  • 1 Box Borax (4 lbs.)  -- $3
  • 1 Box Washing Soda (4 lbs.) -- $3
  • 1 Big Box Baking Soda (4 lbs.) -- $4
  • 1 Bucket of Oxyclean (96 oz.) -- $6 (You can buy 16 oz. containers at the Dollar Tree, but the cost would essentially be the same)
  • 1 container Purex Crystals Fabric Softener (28 oz.) -- $5
Mix all the ingredients.. Use 2 tbsp. per load. 

In my research, I read in some comment somewhere a great tip to help you avoid the annoyance of grating those bars of soap. Cut your soap bars into large chunks. Put about a bar's worth on a paper plate (not Styrofoam...that will melt!) in the microwave for 3 minutes. The soap will puff up. Once the chunks have cooled, you will be able to crumble the soap into a powder. And it worked!

I decided to mix my ingredients in a 5 gallon bucket - also, I would recommend doing this outside. All that powder can create a little cloud. 

I purchased a 2 gallon glass jar from Walmart for $9.97. Using the empty oxyclean container as a scoop, I transferred the soap from the bucket to the jar. 

Then, I let my husband transfer the jar down to the laundry area in the garage. 

The recipe recommended pouring the soap into the water as the drum fills up. Once the water has filled, then add your items to be laundered. Also, the scoop in the oxyclean container is approximately 2 tablespoons. So I just kept that little plastic scoop in the top of my jar. 

I chose a tropical scented Purex crystal - and it smells soooooo good and clean! My husband even noticed the great scent today! 

According to my calculations (if this lasts for as many loads as it says it will), it comes to 8 cents per load. And that includes some fabric softener and Oxyclean! I will most likely still use dryer sheets, just to help with static. But I am excited to see how long this lasts us! 


  1. I am glad you are liking it so far. Might have to cave and upgrade to this recipe. Time will tell though!

  2. Any recipes for an HE machine?

    1. The original post (find the link in the post above) says this is perfect for HE machines as well!