Monday, January 10, 2011

Homemade Powdered Laundry Detergent

A couple of people have asked me about powdered laundry detergent.  Here is the recipe:

1 cup grated Fels Naptha Soap (I use the fine side of a hand grater for this to be sure the soap fully dissolves)
1/2 cup washing soda
1/2 cup 20 mule team borax

Mix together and store in a container.  Use 2 Tablespoons per load.  A lot of powdered drinks come with a 2 T. scoop that you could use.

I do not use the powdered detergent very often because it is not as cost effective as the liquid, but it is great for camping or traveling when you don’t want to have to lug a big bottle of detergent along.  I have never used any other soap than the fels-naptha for this (I bought a case), but you could always try it with castille or Ivory soap.


Donna-Leigh Harmon said...

I just found your blog!  Love it! Can you tell me why the powdered detergent is less cost effective than the liquid?  THANKS!

birchperch said...

I have been making this and I use Yardley bar soap which can be purchased at Dollar Tree and is actually a really nice/high quality soap in a variety of lovely scents. It is a winner. :) 

Dekinsey said...

What is washing soda?

Linda Gibelyou said...

Washing Soda is Sodium Carbonate (not the same thing as baking soda which is sodium bicarbonate).  Washing Soda is also made by the Arm & Hammer company.  It is sold in a yellow box in the laundry soap aisle of many grocery stores including Walmart.  Here is a direct link to the site of the Arm & Hammer company: or you can google it.  Borax and the Fels Naptha soap are normally found right next to the washing soda in the stores I shop.  I hope that helped you some!  Washing soda can also be used in conjunction with your regular laundry soap to boost it's cleaning power and for general cleaning also.

Hope Marie Galloway said...

I showed my oldest son who's in the USMC how to make this and he suggested I add the Purex Scented Laundry Crystals. Which I've done and have had satisfactory results. I only use 1T of detergent and other friends who have High-Efficiency Washers say they only use 1 - 1 1/2 tsps of detergent and place the detergent directly into the machine versus the dispenser as it sometimes gets clogged there. I also always use Fels Naptha Laundry Stain Bars and grate it in my Cusinart with the shredder as my knuckles bleed too much doing it the grarter way. Lol I've also seen posts where some people use Pure & Natural Soap Bars.

Hope Marie Galloway said...

At our Walmart in Jacksonville, NC you can find the Borax Mule Team All Natural Laundry Booster (approx. $3.00 or less), Arm & Hammer All Natural Super Washing Soda (approx. $2.00 or less) and Fels-Naptha Heavy Duty Laundry Bar Soap (.97 cents) in the Laundry Stain Section of the Laundry Detergent Aisle. I also add Purex Crystals to the laundry detergent. I was taught for every grated bar of Fels-Naptha add 1 Cup each of Borax & Washing Soda to this I add 1C of the Purex Crystals (approx. $4.00 or less). The crystals are also found in the detergent aisle but they're optional the Fels-Naptha has a very pleasant scent to it already. Your bath towels and clothing will be very soft and plesant scented. If I have a stain I just pre-treat it with some of the Homemade detergent and alittle bit of water on an old toothbrush or nail brush. I hope this information helps others out as much as it did for me. I love, love, love it!

Hope Marie Galloway said...

Eek...almost forgot if you shred the laundry stain bars in your cusinart or food processor let it sit for a few minutes as the soap dust is very, very fine. When the dust has settled I put it in a bowl and set it aside. I usually make 3 batches at a time and set each bar in separate bowls. Then I remove shredder blade pop in the bottom blade and add back 1 C each of the Borax, Washing Soda, Crystals, & a bowl of grated Fels-Naptha. I blend these all together pulse at first then mix, let sit so soap dust can settle. I store my laundry detergent in plastic containers or large plastic bags.

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