Homemade Laundry Detergent

Now let’s jump from talking about Christmas straight to Spring Cleaning! 😉 Today’s high is 58 and later this week it will be nearly 70! YAY! That sure sounds like spring to me. I am definitely not a cold weather kinda girl so I love this! Granted, it will go back to freezing again, but I’m not one to complain about the yo-yoing weather when it means I get to have warm sunshine in January. 😉 So in honor of our brief warm weather, I thought it was time to share my favorite DIY cleaning product. 🙂

I feel certain most of you (or at least those of you on Pinterest) have seen the DIY Laundry Detergent by How Does She. So for those of you who haven’t gotten around to making it yet – you really should! We’ve been using it since last spring and it has saved us quite a bit in laundry detergent costs! And if you are worried about cleaning power – don’t be. This stuff leaves even my husband’s smelliest gym clothes nice and fresh! 🙂

Homemade Laundry Detergent 


1 (4 lb 12 oz) box of Borax (found in detergent aisle)
1 (3 lb 7 oz) box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (found in detergent aisle)
2 (14.1 oz) bars of Fels Naptha (found in detergent aisle)
2 (2 lb) boxes of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (found in cooking aisle)

Optional Ingredients:

1 (3 lb) container of OxyClean (found in the detergent aisle): We actually did not add this to our laundry detergent because it isn’t safe for all fabrics (like wool). So we keep it in a separate container and just add a small scoop of it to heavy loads (gym clothes, pet stuff, etc).

1 -2 (55 oz) bottle of Purex Crystals Fabric Softener (found in the detergent aisle): We did not add this the first time we made the detergent, but did add it this last time. To be totally honest, I don’t notice much (if any) difference in scent or softness to our laundry.


Grate the soap. Then mix all ingredients together in giant bucket. We actually half this recipe when we make it just so we don’t have to store a huge amount of detergent so all the ingredients fit in my biggest kitchen mixing bowl. To use, add 1 – 2 tbsp per load of laundry! 🙂

Easy peasy lemon squeezy. I have several friends who have made this same detergent and love it as well. It cleans well and truly saves so much money on detergent (especially for those of us who were somewhat picky about detergents in the first place, haha)! 🙂
Love Rach


24 responses to “Homemade Laundry Detergent

  1. So I’ve been wanting to make DIY detergent for awhile but haven’t gotten around to it yet. I have to be careful to use detergent that is safe for HE machines though – do you know if this one is?

    Thanks girl 🙂

  2. Nice! I have toyed with the idea of trying out this homemade detergent experience and have now decided once and for all that I should give it a whirl. Thanks for providing the recipe!

  3. I’ve made this and used it, love it!!! 🙂 It is SO MUCH CHEAPER! I’m about to make another batch.
    I’ve also heard that you can use dove soap bars, so i’m going to give that a go on the next round!

  4. You beat me! I was thinking about posting a homemade laundry recipe on my blog, but I haven’t gotten around to trying it yet. My friends from back home have been making homemade laundry soap for awhile, and I was going to try it too, but their recipe was a little bit harder. It looks like your recipe doesn’t require boiling anything? So that might be easier. I found another recipe for a powder formula instead of a liquid formula, which seems even easier, so I’ll have to try doing this eventually. The only reason I’ve delayed is because I’ve had trouble finding the washing soda at the supermarket, and washing soda seems to be the key ingredient in any laundry soap recipe.

  5. I’m definitely going to try this, though a few months ago I started using Nellie’s Laundry Soda and absolutely love it. I was sick of the price and the lack of efficiency of the store brands. Thanks for posting this, Rach, it’s good for us all to get back to basics!

  6. I made this over a year ago and it works great! The only issue I’ve had is that my t-shirts are starting to get a weird smell that won’t wash out with the DIY detergent, so I’ve switched to washing those in regular detergent. I’m not really sure why. Have you had this issue?

  7. My boyfriends mom makes her own, and shares it with us. This looks just like the recipe she uses!! Love this stuff!

  8. I want to try this!! I’m so tired of buying that expensive, crazy stuff that doesn’t work all that well.

  9. I subscribe to Charlie’s Soap on Amazon, so I get a new container every three months. I have thought about making my own but never tried. Do you use it in both warm and cold water?

  10. this is genius.
    must try!

  11. I’m excited about the warm weather as well! I saw this “recipe” for the first time in a book written by the 19 Kids & Counting family.. I really want to try it. They also gave a simple “recipe” for baby wipes, too. I bet it saves a ton of money … Especially for them 😉

  12. i’ve seen posts about this before and want to try!!!

  13. I’ve been meaning to make homemade detergent, but I just haven’t given it a try. It’s nice to know that other people think it cleans well and smells good. I hope it’ll help with toddler stains though!

  14. I’m going to be enjoying this “warm” weather as much as I can as well. I’m definitely in the mood to do some spring cleaning.

  15. This is soo NEAT! My friend was just telling me the other day she wanted to try making her own laundry detergent/laundry softner and I thought she was crazy..haha Gotta love pinterest! ❤ Thanks for sharing this, I will DEFINITELY be giving it a try!!

  16. Sylvia @ Frolic Through Life

    I’m loving the warm weather in my area too. Any day I don’t have to wear my big coat is a good day! I’ve seen recipes for laundry detergent on pinterest and wondered if they really work. I am intrigued! I want to try this.

  17. Had to pop over to your blog after you ended up at mine! I just finished scrolling through a bunch of your posts! What a great holiday season you had. I just love everything about the season we just finished celebrating. It’s so much fun. 🙂

    Hope you like your laundry soap! I make a liquid version and I love it.

  18. I never even knew this was possible… but now I want to try! 🙂

  19. I think that is awesome that you made your own laundry detergent! It definitely saves money. I will have to try it! 🙂

  20. Wow! Great, I’ll have to give it a try. 🙂

  21. i have used this before, but never made it. maybe after we go through this bottle of soap i’ll give this one a try. it really does work well!

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