Thursday, April 22, 2010

If It's Gotta Be Clean, It's Gotta Be.... Homemade!?

I know you've all been anxiously awaiting and hanging on the edge of your desk chairs for the outcome of my latest experiment with making my own laundry detergent, so here goes...

After cooling overnight, I'm proud to announce that yes, the mixture did indeed gel in the bucket as anticipated. I guess this shows that something went right up to this point. Great, but here's where I get a little embarrassed, though... Previously I had said that I made a half-batch due to only having two small containers to hold my new liquid gold in. Well, I obviously didn't do the math or even think of doing the math, because 5 gallons of liquid {remember I had to add water to it before bottling...} does not and will not fit into two wimpy containers totaling 175 ounces. Not even close... Nope.

Fortunately, I also keep my vinegar in the laundry room for mixing my favorite all-purpose cleaner and was running low in the larger bottle. Voila, another container! Still not even close, though... To the recycling bin I go. {Yes, I dug through my trash to get an orange juice container to put my detergent in, but hey, this is 128 ounces of pure detergent storage for nothing! It was Earth Day, remember...} Okay, still.not.close.though. Raiding the pantry brought forth a nice big frying oil jug that I didn't want anymore, but I didn't have any place to dispose of the oil. In the end, I ended up leaving the bucket about 1/3 full and sitting on my dryer, but the moral of this huge long rambling would be to measure twice, pour once. ;)

Moving on, since you all just really want to know if this stuff works... In one word, YES! I was very happy with the outcome of the lightly-soiled normal load that I did this morning. I inspected the clothes very closely while still warm from the dryer and this is what I found.

~ Very soft clothes with no need of softener. Springy and bouncy! {Wish my hair was like that...}
~ Wonderful fresh, clean scent with no heavy perfume. Pure clean that my nose had a hard time leaving. {Unfortunately, there is no trace of the wonderful scent of Fels Naptha after the dilution process, but that's what the other 6 1/2 bars on my shelf are for...}
~ No soapy residue on clothing. I think that even the expensive brand detergents leaves some residue behind...

I have yet to try it on any heavily-soiled clothing from the children's outdoor playtimes, but I'm confident it can stand against the expensive stuff. I've also read many good things about using Fels Naptha as a stain treatment by rubbing the bar into the stain before washing, so I'll keep that in mind for sure. All in all, I think it was a success other than the storage fiasco, and hope that I've encouraged at least one of you to change your laundry tagline for good! I mean just look above at all of the detergent half a bar of soap, less than a cup of dry ingredients, some water, and time will buy you! :)
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7 comments:

Susie B. Homemaker said...

I have been wanting to make my own detergent for awhile now... maybe I'll give it a try! Very cute blog btw- I'm your newest follower. :)

Lenae said...

Good for you and your successful "experiment"! I really do have to try this soon...

Amy - AKA - TigerMommie said...

I'm so glad to see this.....and very glad it worked!
Making detergent has been in the back of my mind for a while, and after my fiance was commenting on how much Tide costs, I'm really seriously considering trying to make some!

This Heavenly Life said...

Consider me convinced! Detergent is SO expensive, and I'd love to try this!

Chris Brown said...

Kate:
this is great! I used to use Fels Naptha soap for washing off after dealing with poison ivy and I love how it smells too. You've inspired me to make a batch!
thanks!
Chris

Savvy Little Women - Kate said...

This is great! I want to try it soon!

Too Many Kids In The Bathtub said...

I too have been making that recipe for a few months now. I LOVE IT!!!!!!