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homemade laundry soap

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by cookinmom, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. cookinmom

    cookinmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2007
    Saint George GA
    Hi, Several people have emailed me for this recipe, so I figured I'd just go ahead and post it here for anyone that wants it. I have made it now, and am using it and I'm pleased with it. I found all the ingredients at Publix, which in this area is one of the more upscale grocery stores, having out-of-the-ordinary items. Hope y'all like it!

    OK here it is. I gotta say though, that some of this stuff is not in many of the stores here either. This was sent to Countryside Magazine by Dorice Baty of Monett, MO

    1/3 bar of Fels Naptha, 5.5 oz bar
    1/2 cup washing soda, not baking soda
    1/2 cup borax powder
    1 Tablespoon essential oil (optional) **my note: apparently the cost of the essential oil was not figured into the 68 cent thing, because those things are STEEP!
    2 gallon jugs, such as white vinegar jugs

    Grate the soap and put it in a large saucepan with 6 cups of water over medium heat. Heat until the soap melts. Add the washing soda, borax, and essential oil, stirring constantly until all has dissolved. Let it sit for 5 minutes over the heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let sit for another 5 minutes. Using a funnel, pour half into each gallon jug. Fill each jug halfway with hot water and shake well. Continue to fill the jug to the top with hot water. Shake again, then put aside for about 24 hours. It will gel up and look like egg whites.

    Use 1/2 to 2/3 cup per load. It won't suds like most detergents but the clothes smell wonderful. You can also add 1/2 cup white vinegar to each load to soften the clothes.
     
  2. Barnyard Dawg

    Barnyard Dawg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 7, 2007
    Northern California
    cookinmon reading your post reminded me of one of my early trips to China. I would take a shower I would use a bar of soap I actually thought smell very good, then my wife asked me if I was using it, I said yes she then told me it was for clothes.[​IMG]
     
  3. cookinmom

    cookinmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2007
    Saint George GA
    Barnyard Dawg, that is funny because when I was telling my mom that one of the ingredients was Fels Naptha soap, she said, "Oh I love that soap. Mama used to bathe with it." It says on the package that it's for clothes, but apparently Grandma figured, hey it's soap, it smells good, let's use it! [​IMG]
     
  4. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2007
    I use that recipe, too! And sometimes when I'm lazy I just mix the ingredients all up dry and use it that way (works fine, though the gel is probably better in cold water). Also, you can buy essential oils pretty inexpensively at http://essentialoils.org/ and some other places online. What I like about that site is you can buy lower grade oils for cleaning products and the like (as opposed to the very expensive aromatherapy grade stuff).

    I wish I could figure out a homemade dishwasher soap - ideas?

    eta: I don't use Fels Naptha, though. I use castille soap, like Dr. Bronner's bar soap. I like the ingredients better, the smell, the way it works. I think it's actually cheaper, too.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2007
  5. SunChick

    SunChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 23, 2007
    Bel Air, Maryland
    What is washing soda? I would love to try out this recipe! I've made lots of soaps in the past--from hot process method to cold-process. I have lots of EEs left over so I like the idea of havin a good smelling laundry soap!
     
  6. cookinmom

    cookinmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2007
    Saint George GA
    I don't know the chemical composition of washing soda, but Arm & Hammer makes it and they sell it in the laundry detergent aisle of the grocery store. It smells really good!

    coocooforcocoapuffs, (wow that's long! [​IMG] ) thanks for the info re: essential oils. I paid $8 for a bottle of lavender e. oil at the health food store. It was that expensive aromatherapy grade. The vanilla was $26!

    I think I'll try the Castile soap next time. See which one I like best. I have to say, when I bought groceries the other day, I grinned to myself going up the laundry row and knowing I wasn't paying $7 for a thing of Tide! I figure I can save approx $150/year just by making my own. [​IMG]
     
  7. Llysse

    Llysse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 11, 2007
    Do you know if this product would be appropriate to use in HE (high efficiency) washers? I notice you say it doesn't suds up as much--we have to get a special HE formulation of laundry detergent because our washer uses so little water compared to most regular washers. I'd love to make my own, but I also don't want to use something that won't work for my washer. [​IMG]
     
  8. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2007
    Quote:Washing soda is just a little different than baking soda? Like baking soda is sodium bicarbonate and washing soda is sodium carbonate. Or something like that. It's still a completely natural, environmentally friendly substance. I think it dissolves better?

    I have bought gigantic bottles of lavender from essentialoils.org for $8. Seriously, they have great prices. I have a lot of oils because I used to make my own soap, but the ones I use most in my cleaning products are lavender, tea tree (amazing disinfectant), peppermint (because it smells good) and citrus oils (good cleaners and smell heavenly).

    And, Llysse, we have had a HE machine for 5 years and never used the HE detergent in it. The Sears guy who delivered it told us that you don't need to, basically it's a ploy to get you to buy expensive detergent. You can just use less of whatever detergent you choose (including the homemade). [​IMG]
     
  9. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2007
    Oh, and you can just call me coocoo. [​IMG]
     
  10. Llysse

    Llysse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 11, 2007
    Quote:Gosh, we don't pay more for HE detergent. Does it actually cost more is your area? It's the same price here. Because HE suds less, our washer is able to rinse out out of the clothes with the little water it uses in its cycles (because the suds don't rise above the level of the water in the wash the way they would if we used regular detergent).

    I can stick my nose into a bouquet of ragweed and inhale the pollen with no problem, but my my skin is pretty sensitive, so I don't know how well I'd do with regular detergent in an HE washer since it wouldn't rinse out properly. In addition, with more suds, the clothes don't get as clean in a tumbling washer as opposed to an agitating washer, because the suds actually sort of cushion the fall... that's what does the work of the agitator in my front loader. You may have one of the top loaders, though.

    You may be interested in this:

    http://cleaning101.com/laundry/HE.pdf
     

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