Love Your Laundry: Homemade Laundry Detergents

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

| July/August 2010

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

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

Anne
7/17/2014 9:40:27 AM

Is the Simple Washing Powder recipe missing borax? Instructions mention it, but list doesn't have it. Thanks.


Jessica
7/29/2013 1:04:15 PM

Few things - you need to use washing soda not baking soda. For your pre-wash stain treatment: baking soda + vinegar is ineffective. The two pH's cancel each other out rendering the solution useless. You are left with a solution of water and what is essentiall a salt. If you are going to mix lemon juice/hydrogen peroxide you need to store it in an opaque container. If you store it in a jug as suggested, hydrogen peroxide reacts with the light and becomes water - completely ineffective. This article was very porly researched.


Anonymous
3/7/2013 12:55:30 AM

Borax is not safe or good environmentally it gets an F rating from Environmental Working Group and Mother Earth News even posted an article about its dangers. Rather ridiculous to see it in a recipe here!




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