~ week #3 ~

This particular thing I tried was so exciting to me because it fed my inner Ma Ingalls and my inner Dave Ramsey!

I made my own laundry detergent!!

It is super easy and ridiculously cheap! I can't believe the amount of money I've been wasting on stupid, boring laundry detergent!! No more!

So, here is the ingredient list:
My girlfriend said that she had bought all of the ingredients (minus the bucket) at WinCo and so I figured I could get them at Walmart just as easily and probably cheaper. Nope. I ended up at WinCo after searching every other store for the Washing Soda and Fels Naptha bar. It is the only place that carries them.

Cost Breakdown:
5 gallon bucket with lid (Home Depot): $3.32
Borax (Walmart): $2.98
1 gallon tupperware-type pitcher (Walmart): $2.98
Fels-Naptha bar (WinCo): $1.07
Arm & Hammer Washing Soda (you cannot use baking soda....something about it having to be a bicarbonate....whatever that means. :)) (WinCo): $2.71

Grand Total (for about a one year supply of laundry detergent!!!!): $13.06

And even better, when it's time to make another batch, the only thing I'll have to buy is the Fels Naptha bar for $1.07! It takes so little of the Borax and Washing Soda that they will last a good 10 years or more!This is the finished product in the 5 gallon bucket. Egg Flower soup anyone? ;)

Here's how you make it:
Grate Fels-Naptha bar of soap in food processor and add to saucepan with 4 cups of hot tap water.
Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted. (Next time I make this, I'll use the burner on our BBQ outside. My family claimed their eyes were burning while I was "cooking" this because it is such a strong concentration of soap.)
Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, 1 cup of washing soda and 1/2 cup of Borax.
Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water.
Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken. Stir.
Fill a Tupperware-type pitcher half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water.
Shake before each use. (will gel)

*5/8 cup for top-load & 1/4 cup for front load washers.

I have a lot of dishwasher tabs right now that I got for free after coupons awhile back, but when they're gone, I'm going to try making that too!


Jamie said...

So funny! I just made this soap this morning. The last time I made it was in October and I only had made 1/2 the recipe because I was just trying it out. I couldn't believe how long it lasted. I also make dishwashing powder for the dishwasher.. so easy! My husband thinks I am a dork, but at least I know I'm not alone :) hehe

*CPA* Su said...

I've wanted to make my own detergent too, but never have been brave enough! Maybe I'll try this!

Stacie said...

I've made a powdered laundry detergent before - using pretty much the same ingredients - but it didn't dissolve all the way sometimes. I bet this recipe would be way better!

Talia said...

that is amazing, Cheri!!! Wow... methinks I need to make some. I'm all about being cheap. :)

I'm still waiting for you to teach a class on coupon-ing too, by the way. ;)

Sunny said...

OK, now that you've made it and tried it, does it work well? Does it smell good? I'm scared to try it (not sure why) and I'm sure I'd mess it up. Is it good for sensitive skin? I'm sure you know the answer to ALL of these questions. ;) And where the heck does one find a 5/8 cup measure?!?! What the heck is that even?

~ Kati :) said...

well, you won't ever have to buy another birthday present (for moms anyway:)...just make some laundry detergent!! i'll put this one on my to do list :)

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