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09 September 2011

Make your own.

I've jumped on the make your own bandwagon before.  I usually jump right off at some point between buying the supplies and actually making the item. 

No more friends.  No more.

Finally, I have actually followed through.

I've had Borax, Fels Naptha soap and Washing Soda sitting above my washer for almost three years.  You read that right.  Three years.   And while I frequently use and replace the Borax, the remainder of it sits there...mocking me every time I put a load in.  Trust me, that's a lot of mocking.

Here's what I made:

Homemade dishwasher detergent

1/2 box Borax, 1/2 box Arm & Hammer Washing Soda, 1 1/2 cups Epsom salt and 1 bottle citric acid.

Mix it all together.

Store in a container with a tight lid. 
Use 1 TBSP per load.
 Homemade Laundry Detergent:

1/2 box Borax, 1/2 box Baking Soda, 1/2 box Washing Soda, 1 1/2 bars grated Fels Naptha, 1 cup OxiClean.

Use your food processor to grate the soap.
Mix it all together in a bucket.

Store it in a container with a tight fitting lid. 
Use 1 TBSP per load.

I'll probably use 1 TBSP for regular clothes and 2 TBSP for Ronnie's work clothes and towels. 

I have less than $20 total in both recipes.  At 1 TBSP at a time for both the dishwasher and washing machine, I expect it to last anywhere from 4 to 6 months.  I do an average of 3-4 loads of laundry and 1-2 loads of dishes daily. 

I'm sure I could make it for less if I left out the Oxiclean.  I just threw it in because I had it in the laundry room and Ronnie's work clothes are a greasy mess from the aluminum plant.

One final project for today:

My sweet friend Cessna gave me some wonderful smelling foaming soap for my birthday in February.  I just recently ran out and was wanting more.  Luckily, I found a recipe for it too.
Add 3 TBSP clear liquid soap to a foaming soap bottle.
I used the last drops of Avon honeysuckle bubble bath.

Slowly add warm water.  Do not shake.
Gently rotate to mix.
Let sit for 3-5 minutes.

Ta Da!  Foaming soap. 
I think I'm going to have a hard time paying $3 and up for foaming hand soap from now on. 

And for the record, all this homemade stuff took me less than 30 minutes to do, with kids helping.  I think I could pull this all together in 20 minutes on my own.  Not too bad.

OK, now pick a project and just go do it!

Update:  I actually made all of this on Wednesday.  Since then I've done a few loads of both dishes and laundry.  I'm impressed.  Our clothes look and smell clean and no one is itching - the sign of success for us.  And the dishwasher detergent even cleaned my icing bowls from the Angry Birds cupcakes.  Getting Crisco and butter off of plastic is no small feat.  So far, so good.


Rachel E. said...

I'll have to look for citric acid. I think I may have seen it the other day, but not sure. How big is your bottle of citric acid?

Charli said...

I used a bottle of Fruit Fresh. It's used for canning fruit so it doesn't turn brown. The recipe I have says you can also use 7 packets of unsweetend lemonade/koolaid, but it can stain your detergent dispenser in your dishwasher. I had fruit fresh on hand, so that's what I used.

Charli said...

Rachel, it was a standard size bottle, no more than 1/2 cup.

BB said...

My recipe is:
1 bar of shaved soap (Ivory, Zote, Fels-Naptha or Kirks Castile)

1 cup of borax

1 cup washing soda

1/1 baking soda

8 tbsp of Sun Oxygen cleaner (suppose to be less toxic than Oxyclean from what I hear. Lot cheaper anyways.)

Use 1 to 2 tbsps per load (I have a HE washer) Same amount for top or front loader.

I use white vinegar as a rinse/fabric softener. It gets rid of the oders also. It also cleans your washer. With town water, don't forget.

You fix it exactly the same way you do yours. I think It's alot cheaper though. You don't need the baking soda or the oxy agent but I use them for exta cleanliness.

I also hear that some are grating the Fels-Naptha and mixing it in water to use as a stain remover. Just let it sit out already pre-made.

Also one last tidbit, if you get something on you when your out, put salt on it. It is suppose to take the oils or something out of it until you get home. I tried this at Pizza Hut the other day with pizza sauce on a white part of my shirt. I rubbed it on and went to the bathroom. Convienently they had no soap. I rinsed with water and then reapplied at the table. During dinner the the spot almost disappeared before dinner was over. I left salt on until I got home.

Charli said...

Thanks for the info Barb. I use vinegar in my downey ball, so much cheaper and works great with no smell left behind. I'm going to try your salt trick next time we have a spill (soon I'm sure).

Rachel E. said...

I can't get downey balls here. I also can't get large bottles of vinegar. I like to use vinegar for cleaning and such. I used to use it in the dishwasher dispenser. I want to make my own dishwasher detergent. My dishwasher has a salt dispenser to soften the water. This is common in Europe. Do you think I can leave out the salt if I have a water softener inside my dishwasher? Otherwise, I am not sure what to use for the salts. Perhaps I could use water softener salt?

Charli said...

Rachel, I don't know for sure, but I would think that water softener salt would work ok. I think it must be in there for the friction/scrubbing action. Kind of like the grit in commercial detergent.