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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My Laundry Experiment

As I saw my box of Cheer Laundry Detergent getting lower and lower, I decided it was time to make my own laundry soap. I did not want to spend the $17.00+ on another box of Cheer which is filled with lots of unnecessary fillers! I just couldn't buy a new box without at least trying to make my own. After I had seen the ingredients and instructions on how to make it on-line, I was ready to give it a try.

I did have some reservations. I didn't know if I would like it, would our clothes smell funny, would I feel like the clothes were clean enough, using just 1 tablespoon, etc. I'm so happy to say that I made it, I tried it and I love it!! Especially the $17.00 I just saved!

I don't think it could be any easier to make. In fact, I will show you just how easy it is. You need the following three ingredients: 

Fels-Naptha Soap Bar - Available at Ace Hardware
Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda -Available at Ace Hardware

20 Mule Team Borax - Available at Ace Hardware

The first thing I did was grate the Fels-Naptha with a regular hand grater. This is what it looked like.

Next, I put it in the food processor until the pieces were much smaller. In hind sight, I should have used the pulse setting. My food processor started getting fairly warm after about a minute, so I stopped because the soap particles were starting to melt onto the warm blade. If I had used the pulse feature I don't think that would have happened.

 Now I mixed this with the other two products and it ended up looking like this.

I didn't like the way the yellow soap seemed to want to rise to the top so I decided it needed to be processed again. After about 30 to 40 seconds, I liked the texture.

I was very happy with the look of the finished product and the smell is nice and fresh. Best of all, I washed a load of laundry and the laundry had a nice fresh scent, very faint, not overpowering. I'm really happy that I decided to give it a try.

Here are the instructions: 

Powdered Laundry Soap
1 Fels-Naptha Soap Bar
1 cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
1/2 cup 20 Mule Team Borax

Grate soap or break into pieces and process in a food processor until powdered. Mix all ingredients together. For light load, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled load, use 2 Tablespoons. Yield: 3 cups of detergent (Approximately 40 loads)

I bought the Fels-Naptha bar and the Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda at Ace Hardware. I had the 20 Mule Team Borax and I previously bought it at Winco, but they also have it Ace Hardware. If you don't have Ace Hardware, I'm guessing any true Hardware Store will carry these products. Lowe's and Home Depot don't carry them. I had previously found these products on-line, so I knew that I could order on-line if I couldn't find them at a local store.

The cost for 40 loads:
Fels-Naptha  $1.29
Arm & Hammer: $0.53
Borax: $0.19

Total: $ 2.01 for 40 loads of laundry!

Make it, try it, you'll love it!

When I run out of my liquid Cheer, I will be making this same detergent in liquid form. I will let you know how that turns out as well. I also have everything I need to make liquid hand soap, so I will get back to you on that.

Many thanks to Heidi of Tried-and-True Cooking with Heidi for posting this on her great blog!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you tried this out! It saves a ton of money... who doesn't like that?