I never knew what it meant to do laundry (I mean real laundry) until I had kids!
I remember being able to do a couple of loads on my day off when I was in college and I would be set for the rest of the week, maybe longer. At that point spending $8-$15 per container of laundry detergent was no big deal because it would last me a long time.
Once you have kids – whether babies or toddlers (and I am sure teenagers and on up, I am just not there yet) you will never again be caught up with laundry! It doesn’t have to be overwhelming – do a load every day and set a day each week or every other week to wash all the bed sheets and big stuff. But – it does get expensive. I prefer to use detergent that is fragrance free, and as natural as possible – so that means it usually costs even more.
Living on a frugal budget I needed to find a solution – and I have! It doesn’t help find socks lost in the dryer – but it does help save money and clean my clothes all naturally!
I make my own liquid laundry detergent (and have made powdered as well)! It ends up being less than .10 cents per load and cleans my clothes marvelously without any harsh fragrances or chemicals!
Ingredients and Supplies needed:
- Bar of Soap (I used Dr Bronner’s Citrus this time!)
- Washing Soda
- 5 gallon bucket
That’s all folks!
Put 4 cups of water into the saucepan and start to heat up while you take your bar soap and either grate it or cut off shavings with a knife (I did the shavings, easier than grating for me!)
Once the water just about boils add your soap and stir it steadily (without boiling) until all soap has dissolved.
*Caution – If you walk away and forget about this and it gets too hot it will OVERFLOW SUDSY WATER all over your stove (not that I know this from experience or anything….)
Once the soap has completely dissolved remove from heat.
Add 3 gallons of hot water (I just used hot tap water – didn’t have to be boiling hot) to your 5 gallon bucket.
Pour the soapy water in and mix well for several minutes.
Next add 1 cup of washing soda – mix well until completely dissolved!
Finally add 1/2 cup borax (this can be omitted if you do not want to use borax – but it does help with set in stains and really dirty camping clothes) – mix well until completely dissolved.
Cover your bucket and let sit overnight.
The next day you will have a mixture of slimy awesome goo. I use about 1/2-1 cup of this liquid detergent per load.
Have fun and enjoy your laundry!
*This post was shared on my Gather Page on 9/10/2011!