Homemade Laundry Detergent

Saturday, August 23, 2014

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I had the luxury of a washing machine at Wallowa Lake this year.  I can not explain how exciting it was to not bring home bags and bags of dirty clothes.  The house we rented had a supply of TIDE capsules and although I brought my own homemade laundry detergent I couldn’t resist the TIDE fresh scent.  I admit that I miss the intoxicating chemically indomitable “fresh laundry scent”.  Anyway, I digress. At first, I was really impressed with the TIDE.  It completely removed berry juice from a load of my grandpa’s clothes.  I continued using it during vacation because well… I was beginning to wonder why I was making my own.  It wasn’t until I got home and was putting laundry away that I noticed a BIG difference.  The above photo has not been edited. The shirt on the left was washed with TIDE maybe two times.  The shirt on the right was left home and has never been washed with anything but our homemade laundry detergent and the  H20 At Home laundry ball.  Not only is the shirt on the left completely faded it’s also still stained.  In person they don’t even look like the same shirt anymore! These aren’t new shirts either.  The boys have had them for well over a year and they have been washed many times before. So, I guess I’m sold on my own laundry detergent. It’s cheaper. It clearly is less damaging on clothes. It has fewer harmful chemicals.

I’m about out of the batch I made in January- it’s lasted almost 9 months, pretty incredible for a family of six.  

Homemade “Naturalish” Laundry Detergent 

One Box Borax

One Box Washing Soda

Two Cups Baking Soda (Buy it in bulk @ Winco)

Three Bars Fels Naptha- Grated

One Box of Biz

Two Containers of All Natural Oxygen Powder (or Oxyclean)

Optional- Essential Oil

Optional- H20 Laundry Ball


I highly recommend mixing all the ingredients OUTSIDE or wearing a mask.

Break up the Fels Naptha bars into large chunks and use a food processor with the “S” blade to grind up them up. It helps to add some Borax too as it keeps it going around and not getting stuck in one large clump.

Combine the grated soap and all the other ingredients in a large tub. Be careful not to breath it in as the powder does fly around.  I highly recommend doing this outside in a well ventilated area.

After everything has been mixed together you can add 20-30 drops of essential oil if you want a pretty fragrance.

Use 1-2 Tablespoons per load.  If you have the H20 ball you can use 1/2 TBSP.

It works in HE and non HE machines.


  1. All right you have me convinced that I need to start making my own detergent now!

    1. I will give Joel a sample this coming weekend when he comes up! Just remind me!


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