Make Your Own Laundry Detergent
Don’t laugh! Making your own laundry detergent is quick and easy and will save you tons of money. I first made this laundry detergent here, but I have refined it a bit and I love my new concoction.
- One 55oz Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (Walmart) (you will use one cup)
- One 76 oz box of Borax (Target) (you will use one cup)
- One 14.1 oz Bar of Zote Soap (Walmart) (you will use 1/4 of the bar)
- One small bottle of lavender essential oil (I had some on hand) (optional)
- Downy Unstopables (1 cap full)
- One large pot (it should hold at least one gallon of liquid)
- Cheese Grater
- Two – One gallon buckets with lids – Argee Corporation Versa-Tainer (Smith’s)
- Cut the Zote Soap bar in half and grate with a cheese grater. Place gratings in bottom of large pot.
- Measure in 128 oz (1 gallon) of water into the large pot.
- Turn on the heat to medium high. Stir occasionally until the soap is completely melted.
- Add 1 cup of the Borax and 1 cup of the Washing Soda to the pot.
- At this point, I also added the 1 capful of Downey Unstopables (I used Glow Scent). I wanted my detergent to have a little more “smell” and I thought I would try this. This is OPTIONAL.
- Stir until the mixture boils.
- Remove from heat and add about 20 drops of the lavender essential oil if you wish. DO NOT ADD if you added the Downey Unstopables.
- Let cool a little if you want (I didn’t).
- Measure 64 oz of detergent into each of the one gallon buckets. Add 64 oz of water to each bucket and stir well.
- Let the mixture cool overnight.
- In the morning, use a hand mixer or wand mixer to mix the laundry detergent again (or you can mix by hand). I found that using a mixer helps the detergent not to separate as much.
- The laundry detergent may separate a bit, but I keep a big spoon in my laundry room and stir as needed before using.
- I use about one half cup per load of laundry.
TIP: Save the lid from an old bottle of liquid laundry detergent and use this to scoop out your laundry soap. I usually pour the soap into the washing machine and then toss the lid in as well. I remove the lid from the laundry before putting my clothes in the dryer.
Here is what I spent on the products that I bought:
Zote Soap – $4.99 (use 1/2 – $2.50)
55oz Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda – $10.25 (use one cup – $1.49)
76 oz box of Borax – $11.35 (use one cup – $1.20)
Downy Unstopables – $7.49 (use on lid full – $0.36)
This translates into $5.55 for 2 gallons of laundry detergent. You only need to use 1/2 cup for each wash which means that it costs:
.08 cents per load!
Originally, I made this laundry detergent for only $0.06 cents per load, but this recipe calls for more Zote Soap and the Downy Unstopables adding to the cost. Compared to approximately $0.80 to $1.00 per load when you buy your laundry detergent. If you do 5 loads of laundry per week, you will save over $215 per year!
I am really happy with the results. The clothes come out just as clean as with store-bought detergent and the smell good too!