How to: DIY Laundry Detergent Batch #2

I’m currently out of detergent. My options are, go spend $15 on a thing of it at Sam’s or make my own with this junk I have laying around for free. (I did have to buy the bucket because I used the old one for other things long ago.) Hmm, I’ll go with free. Plus it only takes about 10 minutes of hands on time to make! Easy choice!

It’s been years now since I made my first (and last) batch of laundry detergent. Honestly, I’m a little disappointed in myself. I feel like I’ve actually wasted $100+ on detergent from Sam’s Club because the same amount of detergent would have cost me like $20 to make. Sigh. I got lazy. Meh. I got overwhelmed.

I’m start to stretch my DIY wings again and I’m excited to make batch #2 and share it with you. I’m also happy to have some better pictures to make the process look a little more sexy than the last time. Well, would you look at that, my photo skills have improved over the last two years. Go me.

I want to thank Trent of the Simple Dollar for blowing my mind with this simple process over two years ago. I’m still in awe of it’s simple money saving power.

DIY Laundry Detergent

the best way to spend 10 minutes of your month

What you need:

  • 1/2 Cup Borax (100 Mule Team)
  • 1/2 Cup Washing Soda
  • 1 Bar of Dove Soap
  • 32 Cups water
  • 2 gallon bucket
  • Large sauce pan
  • Big Spoon or wisk

Here’s how to:

Grate the bar of soap into your sauce pan. Add 6 cups hot water and bring to a simmer on the stove over a medium high heat. Stir occasionally until the soap is completely melted.

Add Borax and soda ash to soap mixture and stir until dissolved – remove from heat.

Pour 4 cups hot water into the bucket, add the soap mixture, and stir well.

Add 22 cups hot water to the mixture (1 gallon + 6 cups is what the recipe says officially)
Stir well, cover, and let sit for about 24 hours. If you are adding essential oils to you, you mix those in once it’s cooled down.
I used a hand blender (like the old fashion crank kind) to blend up the lot of it. It seems to be staying separated well enough to put into an old detergent jug or you can use straight from the bucket. Either way will work well.
Use 1/2 cup per load.

Happy Laundry Cleaning to all of you, I’m off to do a load :)

Kristin Roach


    11 thoughts on “How to: DIY Laundry Detergent Batch #2

      1. Hmm, I’m honestly not sure. I think you would have to do a test about how “sudsing” the recipe turns out to be – maybe less of the bar soap? Maybe compare it to diy laundry detergent recipes that are specifically for high efficiency washers? My washer is from like 1985 or some such thing :)

        Here’s an article I found about how you shouldn’t use regular detergent in an HE washer:

        1. I’m kind of suspect about a recommendation list put out by the ‘soap and detergent manufacturer association’.   I can’t speak for this particular recipe, but I’ve been using detergent with the exact same ingredients for about 3 years now in my HE front loading machine and it works great.  As long as it doesn’t suds, it should not be a problem.  The detergent instructions that came with my machine said it recommended HE detergent, but it was not required. It just seems like such a conspiracy to dictate the types and brands of detergents we can only use in our water saving washing machines.  Just my two cents….and what do I know really :p

    1. Hello, I’m new to diying and I’m not sure what is Washing Soda? And where do you get it? Thanks

      1. I got mine from, it’s pretty cheap. But it’s best if you order it with some other things like dyes or fabrics and the like. I think you can get it at walgreens as well, but I might be mistaken. I would call around to your local shops. In theory it would be in the laundry aisle.

      2. It’s available in a lot of grocery stores.  The one I buy is made by Arm and Hammer–look in the detergent aisle as it’s considered a laundry additive among other things.   If you can’t find it, see if your grocery store will order it for you.

    2. Thanks for posting this with photos!  I have been meaning to make this (and saving jugs to put it into), but had yet to see someone snap photos of the process!  Thanks!

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