Monday, June 21, 2010

Homemade Detergent

**lots of pinterest links at the bottom!
Recently I read a post over here At the Bunny's Bungalow on how to make your own detergent. 

As a modern day Martha, as my friends like to call me, I felt I had a "Suzy Homemaker" obligation to take a stab at this recipe!!

Easy enough right?? 

Went to my local ACE Hardware and found the fels naptha, $1.99 (1 bar grated finely)
and the Arm and Hammer Washing Soda $3.99
Then I found the Borax for $3.99 at Target.

as of 2012, Borax has changed their label (long square box)and this can be found on the aisle with cleaning products, if my memory serves me correctly next to the Pine Sol.

So for $10.00 a Batch and only 1 tablespoon per load this is a SUPER SUPER CHEAP alternative to your heavily fragranced, overpriced detergents found in your local store's shelves.
(not to mention all those dyes and fragrances are hard on your clothing)

Check out this link, i found it very helpful while I was making my detergent!!
between Two and Five Cents a Load?? Yes Please!!

Sidenote: As a Fashion Design major I was required to take a VERY informative class called Quality Control. 

In this class we learned today's detergents are actually made with fragrances that intentionally break down the fibers in your clothing.
I.E. Pilling, a screen print cracking, color fading, (i think you get the picture) stick to the good ole tried and true and your clothes will hold up longer, look better and be just as clean at a fraction of the cost.

Another note, same is true of Dishwasher Detergent, anything citrus scented actually has an enzyme in it that will leave swirl marking in your fine pottery pieces and begin to deteriorate the finish!!
Here is the recipe to clean your dishwasher!
This works wonders!!!

Update 2011: Discovered since this is considered a Non-sudsing detergent, HE safe, it is time to start cleaning the inside of the washing machine so it does not mildew.

Here is the recipe to clean your washer.

Update 2012: Husbands undershirts start to look a little dingy after about 6 months, the color almost begins to gray if you will. For now we have purchased clorox for colors for tough stains and to get these shirts whiter!

Jan 2013: I am looking at recipies to remove stains from undershirts with baking soda and vinegar. Will keep you posted as I experiment!!
I have not tried it yet but here is the pinterest link

And another for Oxiclean

I now keep distilled vinegar, borax, and washing soda on hands at all times.

washing the puppy's linens?
add an extra scoup of borax, it is an incredible cleaning agent as well as a splash of vinegar to the water.

Don't want to use a fabric softener or dryer sheets?
find a cleaning rag and an essential oil you like.
I usually use orange oil, soft but clean citrus scent.
Place 2 or 3 dabs on the cloth and drop into the load.

Whew now lets get cleaning!!


sarahluz said...

So 1 tablespoon will really clean a large or xlarge load of soccer jerseys and nasty socks and underarmor?!?!?! I'm looking forward to trying this, I just wanted to make sure you weren't supposed to put in more if you have a larger load. Does is smell clean like soap? I know these are idiotic questions, but I am curious. :) Thanks!

Jenny Beth said...

yes ma'am, one tablespoon and your done. My first load was a true experiment. I placed yard clothes covered in dirt sweat and grass stains, with a spray of stain remover and (for this load at least) a heaping spoon of the mix i was thoroughly impressed. Not a heavy fragrant smell, but a clean refreshing one!! Check out the link I provided, they talk about adding fragrance which i may do with my next batch, and no... it really isnt too good to be true. I LOVE it.

Also my husband has really sensitive skin, and the detergent is not near as hard on his skin as say tide or gain.

Karen Miller Rehkopf said...

Hey... I'm going to try making this!
Have you tried it on HE washers?
We just had to put alot of $ in to repair ours, so I don't want to 'mess it up' :)
Thanks for the recipe.

Anonymous said...

Do you still swear by this recipe??

Jenny Beth said...

I do!! I have only bought dreft for the baby's clothes just simply because I LOVE the way it smells. Going on a year and a half making my own detergent and I have no reason to go back!! works great and keeps my clothes clean!! email me if you have any questions.