DIY: Make Your Own Laundry Detergent

I made my own laundry detergent today.  For the second time.  First time was apparently around February 5, 2012(Yes, dates on this blog are in European order.)  The first bath of laundry detergent lasted all the way until this week, when I used the last bit of it.  That's 97 weeks, at roughly 2 loads per week for a total of 194 loads.  We'll do more math later.

One of the things I like about making my own laundry soap is that it's literally a 'once every couple of years' kind of thing.  If it was ever something I wanted to do more frequently, I'd try making these laundry bombs because how cool do those look?  For now, I'm happy with what I've got going on. 

Last time I made the soap, I used a recipe from the simple dollar and it worked quite well. Today I saw a recipe from the happy money saver and was intrigued.  I wound up using a bit of both recipes to make my own concoction.

The recipe: 
1 part oxi clean
2 parts fels naptha  soap (grated)
4 parts boarx
4 parts washing soda

Grate the fels naptha bar soap.  I used my food processor, first with the cheese grater attachment and then with the blade.
Add the ingredients together
Mix the ingredients well.  I dumped it in my food processor to get it mixed right.  Big spoons and big containers also work well.
Store detergent in an air-tight container
Use 1 to 2 tablespoons per load of laundry

For any items used to grind, grate, or mix the ingredients: rinse them, clean them and rinse again if they are also used with food.

Here's the specific I put in the food processor for mixing each time.  Obviously an entire box of borax doesn't fit in the food processor at once, so I had to do this a few times.

1/4 cup oxi clean
1/2 cup fels naptha soap (grated)
1 cup borax
1 cup washing soda

Cost analysis: 
The total cost for ingredients as $29.02.  I think I could've found some of this less expensive in other places but I got it from my local business where the prices are a bit higher.  Because Target doesn't have washing soda.  WTF?  To be fair, neither Rainbow nor Cub Foods seem to carry it either.  I've heard Wal-Mart does, but there's not one close to me. 

Assuming I get the same mileage as the last time I tried this, 194 loads, that's $0.15 per load.  At Target, Tide costs $11.99 for a box that does 53 loads, or $0.23 per load.  Even paying local small business prices for the ingredients (hello $1.99 per bar of soap), I still came out ahead.  I did check Wal-Mart prices.  I couldn't find a price for the Fels-Naptha bar.  The total for the other ingredients were about $10 less than what I paid.

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