Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Homemade Laundry Detergent

In an effort to be "greener," and because I just simply wanted something to do on Sunday night, I made a batch of homemade laundry detergent. The recipe is as follows:

Equal Parts of:
Arm & Hammer Washing Soda (NOT baking soda)
OxyClean Free
Bar Soap (I used half Fels-Naptha and half Kirk's Castille, but I think you can use just about any brand), finely grated

*I was able to find all of these ingredients at Rainbow Foods. WalMart only had Borax and OxyClean Free.

*You can store it in a hard-sided container you have around the house (coffee canister, OxyClean bucket?) or in a Zip-Loc bag, like I did.

*Each large load of laundry takes just 2 tablespoons of detergent in a regular washing machine, or 1 tablespoon in a high efficiency washer.

*If you are washing in cold water, I recommend dissolving it with hot water first, then switching the water to cold.

*Instead of using fabric softener in the rinse cycle or dryer sheets, adding 1/2 cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle will leave your clothes super soft! Don't worry, they won't smell like vinegar.

I've used this on several loads of laundry already and am loving the results! I washed our bedsheets last night and had a hard time falling asleep because I kept noticing how clean they smelled!

One note to all you cloth diaperers out there (I know, nobody who reads this uses cloth diapers): If you want a detergent to use on your diapers, just use the washing soda, borax and OxyClean Free. DO NOT add the soap! It can make the diapers repel water instead of absorb. Yikes! We wouldn't want that!