Thursday, May 20, 2010

Homemade Laundry Detergent

A few days of cold cold rainy weather has seen me spend most of my time in the laundry; washing, ironing, hanging, airing, everything possible to avoid using the money-sucking dryer (I weakened and used it twice in 7 loads of washing.)
So on that note, I thought I might share my laundry detergent recipe.

It's really easy to make, fairly good for the environment (well, at least better than the over-fragranced-shop-bought ones) and best of all it's CHEAP! It costs bugger-all to make 10 litres. And yes, as far as I'm concerned bugger-all is a standardised unit of measurement ;) .
Most people probably know how to make it; it's a fairly common concoction but for those who don't and are interested, here it is.

What you need is:
1 cup of soap flakes. I use the cheapy homebrand laundry soap and either grate it or grind it up in the blender.
1/2 cup of washing soda
A good swig of essential oil. I use eucalyptus.
About 10 litres of water.

So first, I chuck the soap flakes in a saucepan with about 1.5 litres of water, whack it on the stove over low heat and stir it gently until the soap flakes completely dissolve.

Once the soap flakes have dissolved completely, add the washing soda. Stir it around for a bit; it should start to thicken up. Once they have dissolved, I add the essential oil. Stir it around for a bit longer, until it is all combined and smelling lovely ...

Then tip it into a big bucket and make it up to about 10 litres with hot tapwater. Stir it around a bit more until it's all mixed properly.

When it's cool enough you can pour it into bottles. I use old juice and milk bottles. Sometimes, if I'm feeling lazy, I just leave it in the bucket and scoop it out of there.
Once it cools it will solidify a bit. If you tip it into bottles, leave a bit of 'shaking room' or else it will come out like slugde.

I use about a half cup per load in the top loader. I only used half that amount in the front loader. It doesn't foam up like store-bought detergents, but it does the job for me ;)


Ven. Yeshe said...

Excellent! I was only thinking about this today, spooky. When I get some time I will whip some up, thanks :)

Cords said...

can you please also post the recipe for the gorgeous child pictured? Thanks

Kel said...

Glad to be of assistance Yeshe!

And you already know the recipe for the gorgeous child Cords ... you made one yourself ;)

karisma said...

Haha! You write recipes like me! Loved the "when Im feeling lazy bit!" I am just imagining me trying to pour that into the bottles! Sounds right up there with making my own bread Kel! LOL!

Maybe we will try this as a experiment and Adem can make it! Sounds like a plan!

PS... I have knitted 5 pairs of fingerless gloves since I saw you and started on a cardigan for Ash. Anna is also knitting now, she is a natural. Started her off on a pair of gloves for Erin and they are so cute!

Kel said...

Hmm soap making for homeschool ... sure why not? It covers elements of mathematics, chemistry, home economics, environmental impact studies and I'm sure we could add more if we put our minds to it ;)

You are a knitting MACHINE! Are we going to catch up for a craft day this week?

karisma said...

Yes we were trying to decide where to have it though. Depends on the weather. Anna thought maybe one of the closer parks? Or even Buff Point so the kids can ride their bikes/scooters along the lake path. It has a park and a bit of shade plus bbq's. What do you think? Worst case we keep it small and come to my house if its cold and sit in front of the fire!

Kel said...

Anywhere is fine with me :) Perhaps a park with an undercover area incase the weather turns though? I can give you a lift home this week too, if you'd like.

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