As promised, here’s the recipe for homemade laundry detergent. We’ve been using this for a few weeks now and absolutely love it. It’s cheap to make, works great, and is non-toxic. We do a lot of laundry, and this recipe seems to be lasting a long time. The only ingredient I wasn’t sure about was soda ash, but I’ve done some looking around and it doesn’t seem to be anything to worry about. Please, correct me in the comments if I’m wrong.
Homemade Laundry Powder (via McBlog)
(Makes approximately 5 cups)
2 cups (finely) grated castile soap (2 cups is the whole bar)
1 cup borax
1 cup baking soda
1 cup soda ash (“Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda”)
Use 1 heaping tablespoon for a large load of laundry. We got a lavendar-scented bar of castile soap and the resulting laundry powder smells heavenly. Apparently castile soap is not totally necessary for this to work (see this recipe), but it’s really nice to use something biodegradable at least.
I was really fortunate that Christina did all the legwork for me finding a nearby store (Uptown Rainbow Foods) that sells soda ash — it can be hard to find. It is really cheap, though; I think it was less than $3 for a large box. Apparently, if you have a hard time finding washing soda you can call this hotline: 1-800-524-1328 and have the UPC code 33200-03020 and give them your ZIP code and they will tell you stores near you that have sold it in the past 90 days.
And with that I’ve eliminated yet another non-recyclable plastic item from our home (Minneapolis doesn’t recycle plastic bottle caps). Plus, this is cheaper than the 7th Generation laundry detergent we’d been using.