Thanks to the hot summer weather I have a nice collection of dirty laundry pilling up like a little mountain… My weekly laundry routine is in need to be upgraded to twice a week, which means a jump in our laundry detergent consumption. Besides the frustration by looking at my little mountain load of laundry, tackling laundry duty can bring me a sense of accomplishment: take a moment to imagine the warm, soft, fresh-smelling laundry. There’s something soothing about the smell from fresh laundry that is hard to describe by words…the smell of happiness, maybe. This is why I decided to experiment with making my own laundry detergent. Lots of blogs posts on homemade laundry detergent has already done the math for me. With the apparent increase in our detergent consumption, it is definitely worth trying. Also, I feel like picking up each individual ingredient that goes into your laundry detergent and hand-mix them all together makes me realize the charm of home-production, and the simplicity of the ingredient makes me believe my handmade product is going to be gentle on the skin as well. Plus, there’s the bonus that you got to choose your own scent (either by using essential oil or using scented liquid castile soap, which will be explained later in this post). I prefer the minty fresh smell for my laundry, so I have chose the minty scent instead of the lemon scent from the original recipe.
After some research, I decided to go with a liquid recipe. They are much harder to find than the solid ones, but I prefer the liquid formula because it’s less concentrated so it will protect delicate materials (like those chiffon tanks tops etc). Thanks to mishmashmama.blogspot.com (-sorting out the facts & -on pH balance/chemistry), I learned about the scientific perspective of homemade detergents and recipe courtesy to Michelle Jeffcoat (viewatfive-two.blogspot.com)
1 CUP hot water
1 CUP Dr. Bronner’s castile soap*
1/2 CUP washing soda
1/2 CUP Borax
1 1 Gallon clean, empty, lidded container **
*Castile soap is a natural soap extracted from castile plants. You can find this product at Whole Foods and Superstore. The soap comes in different scents. You can experiment with any scent as preferred. I used peppermint because it leaves my laundry smells fresh 🙂
**1 gallon=3.8L. I suggest using a clean milk container (the largest size you can find on market).
Use 1/4 cup each load of laundry. Use more if necessary, since this is a natural recipe, you don’t have to worry about the harsh residue left on your clothes.
Another thing to point out is that depending on your location, you can slightly adjust the Borax: washing soda ratio depending on whether if you have soft water vs. hard water. For soft water, you may use the recipe above. For hard water, you might want to slightly reduce the Borax and up the washing soda due to higher mineral content in the hard water.
Happy “laundrying” 🙂 If you decided to try out this recipe, please let me know in the comments below. I’d like to find out how this recipe works for you~Take care!