Tag Archives: laundry detergent

Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe Without Borax

The other morning hit me with a tough challenge –  do you remember your chemistry, Courtney?  Nope I answered quickly, I’ll go get Robert.  Robert and I sat next to each other on the couch and hammered out some math problems.  We were trying to work out some concentration questions for my laundry soap.  I was using chemistry equations and he was using logic.  We both came up with the same answers but I had to cheat and google the equations because alas I had forgotten them.

So why was I bothering with chemistry equations, well I had another soap disaster but I won’t bore you with the details this time.  Let’s just say that I trusted another EHow recipe.  I had to rework the recipe a bit and here is what I have come up with.

Laundry Detergent without Borax: 

Amount Needed Per Load:

1 1/2 teaspoons liquid castile soap

2 teaspoons of Dry Mix

Dry Mix Recipe:

1/3 cup salt

1 cup washing soda

1/3 cup baking soda *update 8/2012 I just started adding this to the recipe, can’t tell if it makes a difference but I feel good about adding another odor absorbing safe cleaner to the mix.

You might be wondering why not mix the two together and add them at one time. I found out that the washing soda doesn’t dissolve well in small amounts of liquid.  In your large load of laundry it will dissolve just fine.  So I eliminated the water in the recipe.  Really why do I need to be lugging around a big jug of water I would rather use small amounts of concentrated soap.

                  This is after the Dry Mix was heated in water.  Not dissolved at all.

Another method:  I used my old Charlie’s Soap bottle because it has a measured pump on it.  I calculated how much castile soap and water I would need for the 1 gallon bottle I had.  If you are in the same situation, Charlies’s Soap dispenses 30 ml per load so fill the bottle with 4 cups castile soap and the rest with water.  This is really only worth the effort if your bottle has a measured pump otherwise use the concentrated method above.

I washed my first load of diapers yesterday (a true test of washing ability) so I will let you know how well it worked.  Check out my homemade dishwasher detergent without borax too.

Thanks, Courtney

Update 8/2012 – I’ve been using this for over a year now and really love it.  Heavily soiled items I do use one or two more pumps.  And I have found that it doesn’t clean fruit stains very well – that’s what the enzyme detergents do good at I guess.  Stain treating is the only way to go.  My cloth diapers are on their 2 year of heavy daily usage and are still clean.

On My Soap Box: Charlie’s Soap

While Robert has a love affair with cast iron pans I must admit that I have a love affair with Charlie’s Soap.  And today while hanging clothes out on the line for the first time in a few months I fell in love all over again and I thought I would share with you why.  So many of you have probably hung your clothes out on a line at least once or maybe just on the back of a chair.  And your biggest complaint was probably that the clothes were so stiff  and scratchy from air drying that you would never do it again.  This was my biggest complaint with line drying until I started using Charlie’s Soap.  With Charlie’s Soap my clothes are not stiff.  I have no idea why, but they aren’t.  My pajamas are soft, my sheets are soft, my cloth diapers are soft.  To be honest once the clothes are folded and in the drawer I can’t tell the difference from dryer dried or air dried (except for that lovely smell of sunshine that still remains in the clothes).  It’s quite amazing.

Some other things I love are that there is no scent.  The bottle says if you want flowers, go pick some.  I love it.  In my previous life we did aroma and flavor testing so we couldn’t have strong perfumes or hair products and I really got used to this aroma free environment.  In fact there was a woman from another department who would drop by our floor and I could literally track her every movement far after she had left because of the scent left by her perfume.  Now I know that I am a special case with a sensitive nose but it sure is nice to have clothes that smell like sunshine.  That’s all, just sunshine.  I find that perfumes just mask odors that detergents can’t get out.  The offensive smell is still there it’s just that there is so much “mountain breeze” you can’t smell it.  I will admit I was a powdered Tide original scent fan and I could tell the difference between powdered original verus liquid original (who did they think they were fooling, they are clearly different scents).  I thought I couldn’t bear to be without my “perfume” as I called it.  Like most new things I hate the idea of change.  But guess what now I am so happy that I made the switch.

When my son was a newborn he had very sensitive skin (still does, but not as bad).  He always had these tiny red dots all over his back.  The doctor said it wasn’t a rash just really sensitive skin.  I was already using Charlie’s Soap thank goodness or it would have been worse he warned.  The scents in soap are usually the culprits for irritation, I learned.  Even though we were using scent free he was just extra sensitive.  All I had to do was add an additional rinse cycle to his loads and the problem cleared up.  When his skin got a little tougher we went back to the regular cycle though and he’s fine.  But we use scent free everything on him just to be safe.

I use Charlie’s Soap for everything too.  It washes my son’s poopy diapers, delicates, dark colors, white socks (all in seperate loads of course) all with no problem.  I am even planning on washing some quilts in it.  I know it will be more gentle than any specialty soap I can buy.  Plus more affordable.  I have even read that you can use it in your dishwasher.  We’d like to try that one for sure.  I am not sure what the stuff is made of or why it works so well.  But I do know that it is natural and free of many of the bad chemicals that other grocery store brands have in them.

Be brave and go give it a try.