Money Down the Drain

Most days end in me peeling hardened, sticky, stained, and streaked clothing off my equally dirty boys. It is extremely rare to make it through the whole day in the same outfit for any of us. This results in constant cycle of laundry and a constant use of suds with which to clean them.
After figuring up how much of the budget was going towards laundry detergent and being literally washed down the drain I started doing some research. Thanks to Pinterest I didn't have to look to far to find recipes, ideas, reviews, and tips.
Now I'm keeping our clothes cleaned without a ton of added dyes, perfumes, and chemicals and only costing me fractions of cents per load. Estimated cost of all the ingredients is around $6.00. Depending on the kind of bar soap you use and the amount of detergent you use in each load you can get about 576 loads out of your ingredients.
I was skeptical of the homemade detergent actually working on my boys excellent staining skills but it works amazingly well. I've noticed our clothes seem cleaner actually and residue free as name brand detergents actually deposit agents on laundry to repel stains and chemically brighten whites that leave clothes feeling heavy.
Our homemade detergent takes a morning of watching and stirring a pot off and on, but then it makes 2-3 gallons so I don't need to make another batch for at least 6 weeks. The recipe has taken me a few times to troubleshoot it a tad to my personal liking, but it's totally worth every dollar saved and light fresh clean clothes.
1 Bar of soap ( I have used Ivory and Fels Naptha)
I Cup Borax
1 Cup Washing Soda (found on the laundry detergent aisle)

Grate soap into a large pot, add 1 gallon of water.  Cook over low heat until soap is dissolved. Add the borax and washing soda and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and add 1 1/2 to 2 gallons of cold water. Stir well. Using funnel transfer to gallon size containers. Depending on how much water you add this makes 2-3 gallons of detergent. I use about 1/2 cup per load.


  1. It's funny you posted about this b/c I have actually just started making my own and was going to post about it soon! Mine is powder though, so I may have to try your liquid recipe next! Does yours work well on set in stains too? Thanks for sharing!

    1. That is funny! I have never tried the liquid version so I can't wait to read what you have to say about it! So far the powder works great and has even removed some set in older grease stains! I'm pretty happy all around with the homemade route!


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