Laundry detergent prices are always climbing and even with coupons, it can still be expensive. The good news is homemade powdered laundry detergent is easy to make and it will save you a ton of money! Plus, if you have allergies or skin sensitivities you can customize this detergent and make it entirely fragrance free.
Just to compare, the average laundry detergent price is .20-.25 per load but with homemade powdered laundry detergent, you’re looking at only .07 per load. Those pennies add up over time!
All of these ingredients can be purchased at your local grocery store. This recipe will fill up one mason jar, feel free to double or triple the recipe and make extra to keep on hand. Check out our Homemade Dishwasher Tabs too.
Homemade Powdered Laundry Detergent Recipe
1 cup Borax
1 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
1 Bar of Fels Naptha Soap (or Ivory Soap) Shaved
Essential Oils (optional) (Lavender is a good one)
Start by grating one bar of soap, you can use either Fels Naptha soap or Ivory. Do not use “lotion” soaps like Dove or other brands, they will not dissolve well in the water and could leave a residue on your clothing.
In the same bowl, add Borax & Washing Soda. Be sure to mix well. At this stage, you can sprinkle some essential oils (found in natural food stores) or add a couple tablespoons of OxiClean for an extra kick if your skin sensitivities allow it.
The trick to homemade laundry detergent is letting the washer fill up with water and dissolve your detergent BEFORE you add your clothing. This will ensure that the soap dissolves completely.
Use only 2 TBS per load. This works well in HE machines too because it is a low-suds formula. If you want an easy liquid fabric softener, simply add 1 cup of white vinegar to the wash in your liquid fabric softener dispenser.
This formula is gentle enough for allergies and even babies. Next time you run out of detergent, skip those high prices and make it from scratch instead!