Mother Earth Living

Love Your Laundry: Homemade Laundry Detergents

For fresh, clean laundry without chemicals, make your own powders and sprays.
By Natural Home Staff
July/August 2010
Add to My MSN

Make your own laundry detergent to keep harsh chemicals out of your clothes.
Photo By Povy Kendal Atchison


Content Tools

For fresh, clean laundry without chemicals, make your own powders and sprays.

Simple Washing Powder

16 cups baking soda
12 cups washing soda
8 cups grated castile or glycerin soap flakes*
3 tablespoons lavender, lemon or grapefruit essential oil

Combine baking soda, washing soda and soap flakes. Add essential oil and mix with a wire whisk. Use 1⁄8 cup per load. Yield: This recipe makes enough powder to last a family of four one year.

*Try Sun Feather Natural Soap Company, or buy bars of castile soap (e.g. Dr. Bronner’s) and grate with a kitchen grater.

Pre-Wash Stain Spray

1⁄2 cup white vinegar
1⁄4 cup baking soda
3 cups water

Stir together and fill a labeled spray bottle. Spray on soiled spots just before washing. Always test a hidden spot first.

Bleach/Brightener Substitute

1 cup hydrogen peroxide
1⁄4 cup lemon or grapefruit juice
12 cups water

Store in a labeled plastic jug. Add 2 cups per load along with detergent.

Extra tips:
For extra-clean clothes, follow your detergent with 1/2 cup of washing soda, an all-natural laundry booster. Add baking soda to wash water at the same time as detergent to soften and freshen clothes and linens.

Buy It Instead

Biokleen
phosphate- and chlorine-free bleach, detergent and stain fighter

Clorox Green Works
naturally derived detergent and stain remover

Green Virgin Products Soap Nuts
100 percent natural hypoallergenic laundry soap

Planet Inc.
100 percent biodegradable detergent

Seventh Generation
nontoxic, biodegradable bleach, detergent, softener



















Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.

(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here