I made laundry detergent today!
Here is the recipe:
1 - 4 lb 12 oz - Box Borax
1 - 3 lb 7 oz - Box Washing Soda
1 - 4 lb - Box Baking Soda
1 - 3 lb - Tub Oxi Clean
3 - 4 oz - Bars Ivory Soap
The soap can be microwaved for 1 minute then crushed into a fine powder. Much better than having to grate three bars of soap!
I also added my own homemade fabric softener crystals:
4 pound bag Epsom salt - 10 drops essential oils to every 1 cup.
I layered each ingredient one cup at a time. Then mixed and repeated until all ingredients were mixed together. Use about 2 Tbsp per load of laundry.
Chloe was a my helper when I made the fabric softener crystals :) We layered one cup of salt and then dropped in the oils - 10 drops to 1 cup - and stirred until the bag was empty.
I decided to use Ivory soap in my detergent because I had read that you can put it in the microwave instead of having to grate it and that sounded like a better idea to me than grating. It's so crazy how it grows in the microwave and then crumbles into a powder! I started with one minute and added a few seconds at a time as needed.
One word of caution when mixing all these powdery ingredients: You may want to wear a mask or even just tie a handkerchief around your nose and mouth to keep the fine, powdery dust from getting into your lungs.
I used three bars of Ivory for the laundry out of a pack of 10 bars so I decided to try making some liquid soap out of another bar. I think it turned out okay, but I will update after I have had a chance to use it. I used 1 bar microwaved, crumbled and melted in 3 cups of hot water. After it had it melted and dissolved I removed it from the heat and added 1 Tbsp of grapeseed oil and 1 Tbsp of coconut oil. The recipe I found also added 1 Tbsp of honey and I had just about 1 Tbsp of honey left so I added that as well. After it had mostly cooled I added about 20 drops of essential oils. As it continued to cool it got much thicker so I added about two more cups of water and whisked the mixture until it was the right consistency. Then I poured it into some reusable shampoo, conditioner, and syrup bottles. So one bar of soap almost filled four 12 oz bottles. Pretty cool! I think it looks good and smells good, but it seems to leave a "film" on my hands so I'm not sure how I feel about that. I think it's from the oils maybe? It's not a bad feeling, just different so like I said I will update after I have a chance to use this in the shower. This can be used as hand soap or as body wash for the entire family! I figure even if we end up not liking it too much it was something fun to try and really didn't cost much. One bar of soap out of a 10 pack was less than fifty cents and everything else I already had on hand at home so I'm really not out much at all :)
If you are curious here is how much I spent on the ingredients for the laundry and crystals: $22.81
If I did my math right I got 319 oz of powder laundry detergent out of all the ingredients and it only takes 2 Tbsp/load. 2 Tbsp = 1 oz so I should be able to get 319 loads of laundry out of this at about seven cents per load! That is some awesome savings :)