As we have shared many times before, the next stage in our savings as a family is learning to make simpler, healthier, and more natural choices while still fitting within a tight budget. With that in mind, we have started making our own homemade laundry detergent powder. We have two powdered recipes to share, but today we are going to show you the first one which is a classic, perfect for sensitive skin and extremely easy to make. Make sure to reference our other recipe we use for the rest of the family, towels and bedding.
Not only are we trying to be more natural and healthier in all areas of life, but ease and simplicity with a busy homeschooling family of seven is also a very key element to many things we do. We love this recipe as it seriously only takes less than 10 minutes to whip up a batch – even faster than running to the store for forgotten laundry soap – a perfect length for our busy family.
This recipe is for powdered detergent that is equivalent to 80 light loads or 40 heavy loads of laundry. This is the one we make for sensitive skin as we have a baby (like Dreft) and a son with Eczema (like an Ivory Snow type detergent). We call this the “boy’s soap” for this reason.
I like homemade powdered detergent over liquid at this point in our lives – it stores better and and is extremely fast and easy to make. However, we are certainly willing to try a liquid if you have a recipe you recommend!
Our Homemade Laundry Detergent Powder Recipe
First, here is the ingredient round-up:
- 1 bar of Ivory Soap
- 2 cups of Super Washing Soda
- 2 cups of Borax
- Microwave your Ivory Soap for 60-90 seconds – YES, microwave I hate grating – whether it is cheese or soap, I don’t like grating stuff. Plus it takes a long time to grate. The other benefit is that not only is it fast and easy – it is also a super fun experiment and project – your kids will love it!!
- Although it looks soft and edible, it is actually an unexpected consistency – dry and brittle – and it will process very well in a blender or food processor without taxing your equipment (I also want my food processor to last a long time!).
- Plus if any spills over off the plate, it is a way to get your microwave a bit cleaner – and the after smell makes your home smell like a clean linen smell. Very pleasant!
- Put the 2 cups of Washing Soda and the soap (broken up) in your blender or food processor and mix until blended well
- Then add the 2 cups of Borax and blend again until well blended
Your final product will be a nice fluffy white powder detergent that smells great and works well! We store it in a #10 can in our laundry room! This is a 40 – 80 loads worth of detergent!
Here’s how to use it:
- Light Load – 1 Tablespoon
- Heavy Load – 2 Tablespoons
Here’s the cost breakdown:
- 3 Bars of Ivory Soap sold for $1.00 = .33 per batch (we actually have a stash of the three packs we got for FREE with a sale and coupon means even cheaper )
- 76 oz. of Borax with average cost per box of $4 = $0.84 per 2-cups for each laundry batch
- 55 oz. of Super Washing Soda with average cost per box of $3 = $0.87 per 2-cups for each laundry batch
This makes the final price an average of $2.04 per batch or .03 -.06 per load (even cheaper if you get the above ingredients cheaper with sales or coupons)!
Here’s how Dreft and Ivory Snow stack up in price to this homemade equivalent.
Ivory Snow Powdered Detergent 24 oz.equal to 15 loads sells for $5 per box on average = $0.33 per load
Dreft 53 oz. Powdered Detergent equal to 40 loads sells for $12 per box on average = $0.30 per load
Our homemade laundry detergent is 90% cheaper than the store-bought detergent! Even with sales and coupons, you would need to purchase the name brands for 90% off to equal the same value.
The next recipe we will share is for the scented detergent for the rest of the family and our towels/bedding loads!
See more of our Daily Doses of Thrifty to save even more money in your household budget!
Disclaimer: Before using our homemade laundry detergent powder recipe, please be sure to test it on a small piece of clothing first.