Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Laundry Soap

A friend asked if I’d ever tried making my own laundry soap, and suggested the Duggar family recipe.  I checked it out, and thought it sounded great, but I wasn’t taken by the Fels-Naptha soap bar when I looked it up.  I am a reader of Thrifty Living, who posted a powdered laundry soap recipe that looked up my alley.

You will need

½ cup borax ($5.39 per 76oz, $5.39/76oz = $.07 x 2.25 oz = $.16)

½ cup washing soda ($3.49 per 55oz, $3.49/55oz = $.06 x 5oz = $.32)

1 bar Yardley soap ($1.99 per 2 bars, $1.99/2 bars = $.99)

Very fragrant.
It was surprisingly smooth to cut.
Chop the Yardley soap up a bit and throw it in the food processor.  Process it till it becomes these weird nubs that don’t grind any smaller.  Add the borax and soda and process till combined.  Pour into a container and use one Tablespoon at a time.

Weird nubs that made my equipment smelly.
Try It

This made about 24 loads of laundry soap for $1.47, or about $.06/load.

Buy It

I normally use Seventh Generation detergent, which is $7.99 for 32 loads, or $.25/load.  I also normally use Rockin’ Green detergent for my diapers, which is $13.95 for 90 loads, or $.16/load


I have tried the soap on my whites on hot, my husband’s permanent press shirts on warm, and on our colors on cold.  My husband didn’t notice any difference at all.  I noticed the scent, which was a little overpowering for me (I used the Cocoa Butter bar); again- I have a crazy sensitive nose.  Our clothes also feel softer than with Seventh Generation detergent, but not that gross chemical soft like fabric softener leaves behind.   I haven’t tried it on cloth diapers yet, but Beth Anne at Thrifty Living has been for years and hasn’t had any issues.  All that said, I think once all my bought detergent is used up, I’ll Try It full time, though I may try a different scent of Yardley.


  1. This one seems up my alley. Quick, useful, cheap, and I especially like the idea of controlling detergent scent. Thanks for trying it!

  2. I was a little shocked with the price comparison- I never knew 7th Gen was so expensive per load, and I thought Rockin Green was much pricier than it is. Go for it, Sara!

  3. Love your blog, Laura! I made my own laundry detergent a few weeks ago and I love it! I used the same recipe as you but I used Ivory soap. I think it's a lot of fun to make and my clothes are super soft.

  4. Oh, that's a good idea- ivory has next to no scent, I grew up with ivory! Thanks, Sarah!