Monday, August 1, 2011

Homemade Detergents

So I did it... I made my own detergents and I'm pretty excited about it. I've used them and they work!

Laundry Detergent
For the Laundry Detergent, I loosely used the recipe on The Vintage Wren. I noticed that many recipes called for baking soda or washing soda. I used both.

  • 1 Bar Ivory Soap (or other plain soap)
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Cups Baking Soda
  • 1 Cup Washing Soda
  • 1 Cup Borax
I grated the bar of soap on my box grater. The recipe on the Vintage Wren said to use the course side, but I think in the future I'll use a finer side of the grater. I then added the rest of the ingredients into a large bowl and stirred/mashed it up with a big wooden spoon. I then filled a jar with it, threw in a cheapo measuring spoon and tied on a label. Done! 2 Tbs per Load or a little extra if it's a very dingy load. I fill the fabric softener compartment with 2 parts vinegar and 1 part water for a rinse. I've done 3 loads with this new detergent and our clothes have come out smelling so clean.

Dryer Sheets
I also used the Dugger recipe for dryer sheets. I don't need gallons of the stuff so I added about 1/2 a cup of Downy Fabric Softener that we've had for maybe 4 years (our old apartment didn't have a dispenser for the stuff so we just left it out) and 1 cup of water to a small tupperware container. To that I threw in a sponge I had cut in 1/2. Now all I need to do is grab the sponge, ring it out and throw it in the dryer to dry with my wet clothes. I used a vegetable cellulose sponge I purchased from Trader Joes. I can use the same sponge again and again.

Dish washing Detergent
In addition to a washer and dryer, our new apartment has a dishwasher. As such, I've also made my own dish washing detergent.


1 Cup of Baking Soda
1 Cup of Borax
1/2 Cup of Kosher Salt
2 Packets of UNSWEETENED Lemon Kool aid. This is added for it's citric acid. If you can purchase citric acid in your area, you can use this instead.

I mixed it all up in a jar and it was done. The next day it had hardened a bit so I jabbed at it with a spoon and now it's a bit grainy and perfect. I used it yesterday to do a load of dishes and they came out clean and streak free!

It was cheap, it was fun, and it was eco friendly because I used a lot of things I either already had or that I will use in many more projects.

I purchased a huge bag of baking soda from Costco. It's great. I found the Washing Soda in my local super market (Super Stop and Shop) and the Borax I found cheapest so far at Target.

I decided to fill a large jar with just plain old baking soda. I use it for so many things and like to keep it handy. It's great for cleaning out sinks, tubs and your fridge. It's great in household cleaning recipes. It's a great way to get your clothes cleaner (by adding a bit extra to an extra dirty load). And I even use it to wash my hair.

I also love how the jars look... love!


Katherine said...

I love this!! Can you put up a close-up pic of your labels? Did you make them yourself? Very eco and wallet friendly!!

Lilia said...

Thanks! If you click on the picture it gets bigger. I made them on word actually. I had downloaded that font a while back during the craft sale days and just wrote out the names of the items and some directions. I used a rooster clip art to match our rooster napkin holder and rooster paper towel holder. I had some cream colored card stock left from the wedding and cut them out and used some scrap ribbon on hand. It was super simple. I made similar labels for my jars of couscous, lentils, coffee, etc... with directions on the back for cooking if necessary.