Since posting about turning a bar of soap into liquid hand soap, a lot of people have asked me about making your own laundry soap. I have never tried this but I am curious about the subject.
To make your own laundry soap, you use a combination of borax (found in the laundry section), grated bar soap, and something called “washing soda,” otherwise known as sodium carbonate. Arm and Hammer makes it. Here’s what it looks like:
Some people use baking soda instead of washing soda, which is gentler but may not work as well.
The advantages of making your own laundry soap is that it is cheaper. Roughly speaking, store-bought laundry soap costs $.30 a load and homemade costs between $.03-$.05 a load, which is an astounding 85%-90% in savings. And, like most soap making, it can be more efficient because you make large batches and don’t have to replenish your soap supply as often.
Also, as with making your own liquid hand soap, making laundry soap is a way to use up bar soaps. You could use travel soaps, the ends of soap slivers, or any other extra bars of soap you have lying around.
Finally, laundry soap may be more environmentally friendly and have a lower toxicity than the store-bought stuff.
The downside–and this is why I hesitate trying it myself–is that it might not work as well as store-bought laundry soap, especially in high-efficiency washers. I also wonder if it is harder on your clothes in the long run. If that’s the case, making your own soap could be penny wise and pound foolish.
But not having tried it myself, I can’t say for sure. So, for further reading:
- * Got No Dough on The ‘Make Your Own Laundry Detergent’ Debate. It talks about the pros and cons of making your own laundry detergent.
* Making Your Own Laundry Detergent: A Detailed Visual Guide at The Simple Dollar. They not only tell you how to make the homemade laundry detergent, they did a test comparing homemade soap to the store-bought version and got very similar results.
* Crafting Green World tells you How To Make Your Own Eco-Friendly Laundry Soap for Three Cents A Load by Crafting A Green World. You can’t beat that price.
* Make Your Own Laundry Soap from Planet Green tells you how to make both liquid and powdered laundry detergent.
* Simple Easy Fast Effective: Jabs Homemade Laundry Detergent. A straightforward recipe and a cost analysis, too.
If you have made your own laundry soap, tell me about it. Is it worth it?