d.i.y. · house

d.i.y. laundry detergent

As you probably know, babies need different laundry detergent because their skin is more sensitive.  Since we do more baby laundry in this house (cloth diapers and cloth wipes), we go through baby-friendly detergent at a faster rate than most (I assume).  Initially we used Charlie’s Soap Powder as our detergent – both for our own and for Leo’s.  We figured the eco-friendly, good-on-sensitive-skin couldn’t hurt us either!

Recently I saw a recipe on Pinterest for making your own laundry detergent.  I knew this was possible but didn’t know the details.  A quick scan showed it’s really easy!  The hardest part was finding the ingredients.  Walmart didn’t carry any of the products (which surprised me).  Neither did Menards.  But Kroger carried Borax and Washing Soda!  I took my chances and stopped by our locally-owned hardware store and – hooray! – Fels Naptha soap!

I grated the soap (took about 10 minutes) and then mixed it with the soda and borax.  And there it is – instant, delicious-smelling (very fresh and lemony) laundry detergent!  It works great, too.  I did a test run on a load of dirty diapers and they all came out clean, stain-free, and fresh smelling!

Here’s the price breakdown:

  • Borax: $4.29
  • Washing Soda: $3.49
  • Fels Naptha: $1.89
  • TOTAL: $9.67

Each batch should make about 40 loads of laundry, but I have LOTS of Borax and Washing Soda leftover.  So next time all I’ll need is the Fels Naptha.  That’s some pretty cheap detergent!

What laundry detergent do you use?  Would you consider making your own?


8 thoughts on “d.i.y. laundry detergent

  1. What a cool idea. I use a store brand free and clear with a few drops of tea tree oil for extra soiled loads. But I may try making my own now!

  2. i’ve been trying to find washing soda for a while with no luck. now that you posted this recipe, i’m going to start looking again.

  3. Hey girl!! I have been using this recipe for 3 years now (the liquid version)! I have spent less than $20 in three years for laundry detergent. I dont know if your recipe says this, but instead of naptha soap I just pick up a 10 pack of ivory soap…cheap and lasts about 5 loads! Just FYI. Happy washing 🙂

  4. How are your diapers? Do they smell more or less? Have you had to strip them? Love to know because we use charlies too but want to try this if it is good on diapers!

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