I have been making and using this Laundry Soap for years and find it easy, economical and efficient. You will need 3 basic ingredients; a soap of some sort, washing soda and borax. I have found all of these ingredients at our local Walmart in the laundry detergent aisle.
The Soap: The most typical type of soap to use is Fels Naptha by Purex. It is an old-fashioned type of soap usually found in the laundry supply area. The other options for soap are Ivory or another brand called, Zote. Any of these will work. I have used homemade soap and find it works quite well. If you use Ivory or your own homemade soap you will need to use the whole bar.
Washing Soda: This is not to be confused with baking soda. They are not the same thing. Washing soda is sodium carbonate or soda ash (baking soda is sodium bicarbonate). It is a white powder. Its purpose is to help remove dirt and odors. The brand to look for is Arm & Hammer Washing Soda. I find it in the laundry section of my grocery store. Many people have a hard time finding this locally. I know you can purchase it on-line, even through Amazon.com.
Borax: Borax is a naturally occurring mineral: Sodium Borate. It is a white powder. It’s purpose is as a laundry whitener and deodorizer. The brand to look for is 20 Mule Team. It comes in a 76 oz. box. You should be able to locate this in the laundry detergent aisle. Again as with the washing soda, if you cannot find it ask you store manager or look online.
Homemade Laundry Soap
1/2 bar Fels Naptha or other type of soap, as listed above
½ cup washing soda
½ cup borax powder
Essential oil of your choice
*You will also need a small bucket, about 2 gallon size, with a lid*
Grate the soap and put it in a sauce pan. Add 6 cups water and heat it until the soap melts. Add the washing soda and the borax and stir until it is dissolved. Add essential oil of your choice for scent. I love Lavender, Lemon or Rosemary. Remove from heat. Pour 4 cups hot water into the bucket. Now add your soap mixture and stir. Now add 1 gallon plus 4 cups of water and stir. Let the soap sit for about 24 hours and it will sort of gel up. You use 1 cup per load. I use a little more for really dirty loads. I also put 1 cup of white vinegar in my wash load to disinfect. This white vinegar will also keep your washing machine fresh.
This soap is a non-sudsing soap, so don’t worry about the lack of suds. The ingredients do the cleaning, not the suds. The finished soap in your bucket will not be totally solid…it will be watery, but with thickness. This is normal.
Natural Fabric Softener:
1 cup white vinegar added during the rinse cycle will soften clothes and also eliminate static electricity problems.
Life is good, Life is natural!
1997 CA&J Farm
Mathews County, Virginia