I finally did it! I’ve been talking about it for months and I finally made my laundry soap!
After looking at many recipes, I went with this one. I like that it is a dry detergent, and I didn’t have to deal with boiling a huge batch and the mess of it all.
I found all the ingredients in the laundry aisle at Walmart.
1 (4 lb 12 oz) Box of Borax – $3.38
1 (3 lb 7 oz) Box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda – $3.24
1 (3 lb) Container of OxyClean – my mom had a bottle of this that had been sitting around for years so this was free!
2 (14.1 oz) Bars of Zote Soap – $0.97/ea
1 (4 lb) Box of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda – $2.24 – the recipe I followed said to get this in the baking aisle, but you can find the larger 4lb box in the laundry aisle next to the Super Washing Soda
1-2 (55 oz) Bottle of Purex Crystals Fabric Softener – I bought the small size quite a while ago when I had a coupon, I’ll guess the price to have been around $3
Total cost: $13.80 (more like $12.80 because I had a $1 off two arm and hammer laundry items)
The website I followed estimates this to last about a year, I believe, and estimated the cost to be about $28 a year. I’m not sure if I got better prices or my interpretation of how long it lasts is off… The difference in price could be due to my free OxyClean, and that I used a smaller bottle of Purex Crystals (she used 2 large).
I decided to try a half batch just in case I didn’t like it.
I used one soap, my smaller bottle of Purex Crystals, and used this guy to measure half of the boxed ingredients.
It would have been a lot easier to just do the full recipe because I could have opened the whole top of the box instead of dealing with those maddening perforated punch out spouts!
I grated the soap with my new grater and it went very smoothly and worked much better than expected. I layered each set of ingredients about three times and used my grater as a paddle to stir – it worked much better than a spoon.
A word of caution: Don’t layer your ingredients in a small space or with kids around. I never thought about the dust that would fly when layering all these powder ingredients. My (almost) 2-year-old wanted to watch and I felt like world’s worst mom for letting him breath the chemicals and then even worse for keeping him away when he wanted to watch. I don’t know if I needed to worry, but I wouldn’t want to chance it.
After mixing everything, I took a narrow but deep spoon and filled my Purex bottle.
… And then I realized I forgot the OxyClean…
So, I dumped it out, re-mixed everything, and re-filled the bottle. There was still quite a bit left in the bucket, but the small size and easy-pourability (new word???) of the bottle make it nice.
And, check this out! The recipe I followed pointed this out – there are three lines in the Purex Crystals cap. The middle line is about 2 tablespoons – and that’s all you need!!!
That’s it! It smells great and even looks pretty!
I was so excited to try it out! My husband is the laundry guy because he’s pretty fanatical about it. I was worried he wouldn’t give it the thumbs up, so I kept bugging him about it until that first load was done. He approves!!!
I might get two more small bottles or one of the big bottles of the Purex Crystals when I finish the second half of the recipe. He’s all about the smell, and even the small bottle makes it smell pretty good. Did I mention that he tested this out on his work clothes!?! If that isn’t a resounding recommendation, I don’t know what is!