How-to

How to Make Homemade Laundry Detergent

Nov 3, 2019

Learning how to make homemade laundry detergent is not as difficult as you might think, and it does pay off.

 

Buying laundry detergents eats up a significant percentage of any household’s monthly budget; and with the rise of Do It Yourself guides, websites, and videos, people have been growing increasingly interested in knowing how to make homemade laundry detergents.

 

In this guide, we gathered all what you might need to know about the pros and cons of using homemade laundry detergents, the types of homemade laundry detergents, and how to make them.

 

What are the types of homemade laundry detergents?

Much like their store-bought counterparts, there are mainly two types of homemade detergents: powder and liquid detergents.

What are the advantages of Homemade Laundry Detergents?

Homemade Detergents have many pros that urged a lot of people to start using them even partially:

1- The Ingredients are Known:

A major concern a significant percentage of people share is their lack of information about the components of the materials they use in their houses on a daily manner. Many housewives pay extreme caution to not use any potentially toxic or hazardous chemical material.

 

However, homemade laundry detergents, by definition, allow you to choose what ingredients to include in them and what to not, which assures the highest possible level of safety.

2- Low-cost:

This mainly depends on the components you would include in the homemade detergent; however, generally speaking, you can produce large patches with relatively small amounts of each ingredient.

3- Easy to make: 

Like we mentioned before, it is easy to learn how to make Homemade Laundry Detergents. The process is essentially simple, all you need to do is to mix the oils, washing soda, and the other right ingredients with the right amounts and let the mixture rest.

 

What are the disadvantages of homemade laundry detergents?

Now that we have demonstrated the reasons why knowing how to make homemade laundry detergents can be useful, let’s discuss the reasons why they might not be the top pick for households:

1- Time-consuming process:

While it is a fairly simple process, making homemade laundry detergents could consume a lot of time and effort that it would be inconvenient for many, especially considering that its alternative is available all the time.

 

Not only that, but the process also leaves behind a lot of mess and would require you to use a lot of bowls and pots.

 

2- Less than ideal results:

We are not saying that homemade cleaners will not get the job done and clean your clothes, but do not expect more than that. 

 

Because of their raw organic nature, homemade laundry detergents might not necessarily leave your clothes as soft as store-bought detergents do – mainly because of the additives the latter have which might contain harmful materials. In short, it depends on whether you prioritize safety or convenience.

 

Now that we discussed why and why not you should manufacture your own detergents, let’s go through the steps of making them. Specifically, we are going to detail out how to make homemade laundry detergent powders and liquid.

1- Homemade Detergent Powder:

Estimated time of preparation: 30 minutes.

Ingredients of homemade detergent powder:

Most of the components used in making homemade detergent powder are not hard to find. The main ones are:

 

1- Sodium Carbonate, also known as Washing Soda.

2- Sodium Borate, more commonly known as Borax.

 

Important note: Borax should stay out of children’s reach at all times as it has potentially toxic effects if swollen.

 

3- Essential oils (optional to add scent to the mix).

4- Soap bars.

 

Tools and equipment used in making homemade detergent powder:

All of the tools used in this process are ones you can find in any conventional kitchen:

 

1- Knife.

2- Grater: the one you normally use to grate cheese would fit the purpose.

3- Bowls.

4- Personal safety equipment: gloves, bandana, and a mask (for protection against the dust).

How to make homemade laundry detergent powder?

1- Using the knife, start off by cutting the soap bars into smaller chunks to render them easier to handle.

 

2- Next, grind the smaller soap bars against the cheese grater to reduce it to fine powder as much as possible.

 

Alternative step: you can use a food processor or blender to grind and blend the soap chunks into the needed fine and soft powder.

 

3- In a deep bowl, mix the borax and washing soda together; an additional precaution against the harmful dust that might result from the blending is to seal the bowl and shake the components together.

 

4- Blend and stir the grated soap powder into the mix, then add around 10 drops of the essential oil you chose.

 

5- Keep the mixture in a sealed container for later usage.

 

2- Homemade Detergent Liquid:

Estimated preparation time: one hour.

Components and tools:

For the liquid homemade detergent, we will basically use all the ingredients and tools used in the making of powder detergent in addition to hot water and a large, clean bucket with a lid.

 

How to make homemade laundry detergent liquid?

The steps here are much similar to the ones followed to make detergent liquid with small differences:

1- After grating the small soap chunks into a fine powder, place it in a pot and then add hot water to it until the powder is totally submerged. 

2- Start stirring the mixture till the powder melts completely in the water.

3- Pour the resulted mixture into the large bucket.

4- Add the washing soda and borax to the mixture and stir well till all components dissolve into the mixture.

5- Leave the produced gel to rest overnight.

6- If you are using an essential oil, add it only after the gel has cooled down.

7- Make sure the bucket is sealed and shake it well before using it in the laundry.

 

Now, you know how to make homemade laundry detergents, as well as the reasons why you should or should not use them in your household – depending on your priorities and preferences. 

 

In the end, we advise that you do not make a full migration towards homemade detergents at once, start by depending it partially and see if it would be more convenient for you than store-bought detergents.