Saturday, June 6, 2009

Saturday Green Up

One of the easiest Green Up changes we have made here in our
corner of the Garden State has been to start making our own laundry detergent.
The recipe I use is:
  • 1 cup of Fels Naptha Bar Soap
  • 1/2 cup Borax
  • 1/2 cup Washing Soda

I make as much as I can at one time, depends on how many bars of soap are on hand.

First I cut my bars of soap in half

then I use the grater on my food processor it looks like this

then I put this in and chop it all up again

until it looks like this

then I add the borax and washing soda

After mixing it together I put it in this old pickle jar someone had left over..

And I am good to go. I use between 2 and 3 tbsp of detergent depending on how
dirty our load is.I usually toss it in a bit of hot water and switch the water to cold
to wash. I like not having my clothes "smell like something", but many people
make the liquid version (see a recipe here )
and add a scent with essential oils.I have no problem finding these ingredients
at my local supermarket, but if you can not locate them, try here.
It is one of those Green Up things that is putting more green in our wallets too.
Farmer Dad has very sensitive skin, I think there has been an improvement
in his level of dry skin and irritation too. We have also been air drying everything lately,
which has proven a challenge with the recent rain, but we never used our dryer for most
of our laundry any way, so I am not sure how much of a difference that will make.
My next goal is to find a High Efficiency Washing Machine, mine is old and uses too much water.
Do you have a goal to GREEN UP or , should I say,clean up your laundry area? ;-)


Tara said...

I just started making my own laundry detergent again-I lapsed while we were camping last summer.

I wish we could find the grater attachment for my processor - I grate all my soap by hand... Ouch!

I use a castille soap like Dr. Bronner's - they smell so good - and all natural.

Thanks for posting this. It is an easy way for folks to green up!!!

Patricia said...

I've been wanting to make my own laundry detergent for a long time. The only thing holding me back is that I don't have a food processor. I use Fels Naptha soap alot. Mostly to handwash Coles clothes, but its great for removing poison ivy oils.

Mon said...

I used to do this back in the UK. Now I can't get any of this stuff. :( I'll be growing soapwort at some point, but doubt it'll be enough.

Tara said...

We make the liquid version of this –no scent though – and like it very much!

Anonymous said...

You make it look so easy! I might try it in the future. Right now I am using Charlie's Soap. A one gallon bottle is 128 loads, all natural. I'm sure it isn't as cheap as homemade but I like it.

I started hanging my laundry when I can. We don't have a lot of warm sunny days but when we do I make sure I do lots of laundry. I've almost cut my gas and electric bill in half with all my changes. I'm so proud. :)

My next green-up, hmm....thinking....the best I can think of right now is more walking. Right now i am using about one and half tanks of gas a month. I would like to get down to one tank but it would mean eliminating most far flung fun.

black eyed susans kitchen said...

You are my hero! I have been doing a lot of green things and learning more every day, but I have not considered making my own soap....yet.
♥, Susan

zilla said...

I love green laundry practices, but I have to admit, I buy locally made Moonworks laundry powder, which is castille soap-based. I've also used some of the liquid "green" brands from the co-op, but I like the Moonworks best, because it's locally made and doesn't make suds.

Did you know that one of the most frequent problems with HE washing machines is caused by using sudsing detergents? The most expensive repair, though, is replacing the computer components. That costs about as much as a new washing machine!

Cher Mere said...

hmmm, I will carry the ingredient list with me and see if I can find them. Thanks!

myinspired♥{sandra} said...

i love this stuff....been making it for about 18 months and probably don't spend $20 a year on detergent! amazing!

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