Monday, May 23, 2011

Homemade Laundry Detergent Update

You know, I just went off on people who post inane garbage on Facebook, and here I am getting ready to inform you all about my laundry.  Oh, for Pete's sake.

However, someone asked in the comments section about a gajillion years ago whether my home-made laundry detergent worked, and I keep forgetting to respond.

So here it is: my laundry update.

The home-made detergent is awesome.  I have not noticed that it necessarily gets my clothes any cleaner, really, but the smell is great and the clothes are, indeed, just as clean as when I used store-bought expensive detergents.  I stopped using dryer sheets, too, after reading about all the nasty chemicals that go into dryer sheets, and have found that we don't need them at all.  (Which makes me wonder how much $ we could have saved over the years just on dryer sheets.)

My laundry room is more tidy, too, in that I don't have giant multi-gallon containers of Tide HE sitting around.  I don't have a rack near my machine that will hold one of those containers, and I can't put them on top of the front-load washer because I did that once and the machine got up to full speed and threw the container to the floor and, well, that was a mess involving lots of expletives and I really don't want to deal with that again.  So it would sit on the floor and I'd have to lug the thing up to the top of the washer for every load and then set it back down again, and trip over it constantly.

Now, though, my little plastic container of powder sits in an over-the-door rack I have near the washer, along with the boxes of washing soda and Borax that await future detergent batches, and it's no longer a pain to fill the washer compartment.

So, in a nutshell, I heartily endorse home-made detergent.  You'll save tons of money, your clothes will be clean and smell fresh, it's healthier for your family and the environment, and you'll be a domestic maven.  You can even fashion your own crown out of tin foil if you want.

Here's the recipe...can't remember if I posted this before and I'm too lazy to go back and look:

1 bar Fels Naptha, grated
1 cup Washing* Soda (I used Arm & Hammer)
1 cup Borax 20-Mule-Team

Mix it all up together and use approximately 1 tablespoon per load (front loader).  If you have a side loader, or a particularly large load, you can use a bit more.  It doesn't take much, though.  I say "approximately" 1 tablespoon because we're not baking here, people. You don't need to be all exact-like.

*Yes, washing soda.  Not baking soda.  I'm not sure what would happen if you used baking soda.  Maybe you'd smell like a cupcake?  Anyhoo, Target does not carry washing soda...I got it at Shop 'n Save, a local grocery store.  It sits humbly in the detergent aisle, next to the hoity-toity expensive detergents that call each other Mitsy and Bitsy and snub the washing soda by not allowing it to join their "Lavendar and Bleach-Additives and Specially Formulated for Darks" clique.



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