Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Dish Soap

My Seventh Generation dish soap is about to run out, so it’s the perfect time to try making some.  It’s not a very exciting project, but just like the laundry soap (which we’re still using!) it’s one of those basic products that I need every day.  That makes it worth the try.

 I looked through my Green Clean book but the recipe was extremely vague.  It just said to combine vinegar and castile soap, without even giving amounts!  I don’t do well with vague.   Next I did a big internet search and I happened upon an interesting resource called FrugallySustainable.  It has a bunch of housecleaning recipes, including a detailed dish soap recipe.  


You will need

1 ½ cups hot water (free)

1 Tbsp shredded castile bar soap ($3.29 per 1.125 cups shredded, $3.29/18Tbsp = $.18)

1 Tbsp white vinegar ($2.89 per 128fl.oz, $2.89/128fl.oz = $.02 x .5fl.oz = $.01)

1 Tbsp washing soda ($3.49 per 55oz, $3.49/55oz = $.06 x .652oz = $.04)

1/8 tsp tea tree oil ($12.49 per 2 fl.oz, $12.49/2fl.oz = $6.25 x .02fl.oz = $.13)
Other than water this is all you need!
 Since I knew all my castile soap would be used in a shredded form, I decided to forgo the box grater and jump straight to the food processor to chop the soap the same way I do for laundry soap.  This yielded 1 1/8 cups of soap nubs.

Combine everything except the water in a heatproof bowl.  Pour water into the bowl and stir until all the soap and soda has melted.  Allow it to cool on the counter for 8 hours or overnight.

I used the hottest water my tap could make, but I don’t think that was hot enough; I couldn’t get the nubs to melt totally.  I stuck the whole thing in the microwave for a minute and stirred it for longer than I thought was needed until it all melted.  Next time I’ll boil the water.

After 10 hours it had a thick layer of jell on the top.  I had to break though that and whisk it all up so I could call it liquid.  It seems to work pretty well.  It made decent suds and left glass squeaky.  

Chunky soap jell
Final consistency
Try It

$.36 for 14fl.oz, or $.03/fl.oz

Buy It

$3.79 for 25fl.oz, or $.15/fl.oz


What?!  Eco friendly dish soap for 20% of the cost of 7th Gen.?  Yes please!  Try It, definitely worth the small trouble and the initial investment in the tea tree oil.  

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