Easy DIY Liquid Laundry Soap – Recipe & Review
Maybe you’ve seen a million pins for DIY laundry Soap on Pinterest and perhaps like me, you’re a naysayer. I mean, this stuff can’t really work, can it?
I’m a Tide girl for goodness sake!
My people, they are some dirty people. You should see the river soaked, mud coated jeans my husband wears home and then there’s the scrubs. I don’t even want to talk about those.
My husband works in an Emergency Room in the hospital and his scrubs are the absolutely nastiest things in my world. People puke on him and worse. It’s all sorts of terrible.
That’s why there was no way I was making my own laundry detergent.
Until, one day I did.
I’m a woman and I reserve the right to be fickle.
May I present the Trifecta of Clean?
Easy DIY Laundry Soap Recipe:
- 1/2 cup Borax
- 1/2 cup Washing Soda
- 1/2 cup Dawn Dishwashing Detergent
That’s it my friends.
Find an empty jug – I use gallon size empty water bottles, orange juice containers, and old laundry detergent jugs. If you don’t have anything, knock on a neighbor’s door. Someone is sure to have a plastic container in their recycling.
Directions for Mixing Easy DIY Laundry Soap
- Find an empty, clean gallon size (preferably) container.
- Using a funnel, add 1/2 cup Borax and 1/2 cup Washing Soda.
- Fill 3/4 way with hot tap water, replace cap, and shake to mix.
- Add 1/2 cup Dawn and fill almost to the top with water (cold is fine).
- Replace cap and mix by gently shaking bottle back and forth.
TIP: Dawn makes lot of bubbles, that’s why it goes in last, after everything else is mixed.
Most people use too much soap in their washing machine. Period.
I measure out my soap with a top to an old laundry detergent jug, but I use the soap sparingly. A little goes a long way. How much I use depends on what I’m washing. If it’s my husband’s scrubs, I use much more than if I’m washing my dresses. After a few loads, you’ll figure out what works for you.
Just remember, less is more.
TIP: I make several jugs at a time. Right now I have four full containers of easy DIY laundry soap made and waiting to be used.
If there’s one thing I can count on, it’s laundry. The laundry never, ever stays done for more than a few hours. I’m sure it’s the same way in your house. If it’s not, please, for the love of all things good and right and clean, let me know how you do it!
TIP: Always give your detergent a little shake to mix before using. It will separate when it sits.
Let’s Talk Cost
- Washing Soda $3.24
- Borax $3.38
- Dawn Dishwashing Liquid $5.64
All prices are from Walmart, although I’m not getting a kickback from Walmart. Prices are regional. If you live in a place like California, expect to pay at least ten times as much (like everything else).
Total = $12.26
Friends, you can wash a lot of clothes for $12.26. I won’t tell you how many, because that would require math skills I don’t have, but trust me, it’s a LOT.
I would venture to say, you can make approximately 8-9 gallons of laundry detergent on twelve dollars, maybe more.
TIP: If you store your Borax and Washing Soda in a damp place, transfer it into an empty plastic container to avoid caking. I store mine in a gallon size empty (dry) water jug.
I also use a scoop of OxiClean in my all my whites and sometimes in my colored clothes, especially my kids clothes, because they always have stains.
TIP: From time to time you can find OxiClean coupons – be on the lookout!
If it’s not a full load, I don’t use a full scoop.
Since I began using the Easy DIY Liquid Landry Soap and OxiClean, my whites have never been whiter. Ever. Not even with bleach.
My only gripe is with black garments. We don’t have a lot of black clothes, but when I have a load, I’m careful not to use too much soap and to add an extra rinse cycle to the mix. Sometimes a little white residue will be left on black clothes, usually when I use too much soap.
Other than that, I love this laundry detergent. It’s comparable to Tide. For most of my clothes, I like it better than Tide. I’m shocked I just admitted that.
I do a lot of laundry. After all, it’s my mommy super-power; I fully went into this experiment expecting to hate this laundry soap, but I kinda fell in love and it’s easy to make. Win-Win!
Also, my son has sensitive skin. He gets itchy and breaks out with some laundry detergents. I always made sure to use a “Free and Clear” soap on his clothes, but he’s fine with this DIY detergent. Not an itch.
Now, I’d like to hear from you.
Have you tried DIY laundry soaps?
Would you consider trying this recipe??
Click Photo for More Cheap Tricks
Elizabeth Valdivia says
I use this recipe also! & I love it! I just make mine a little different. I add Tide Ultra Stain detergent! My recipe is just like yours 1/2 cup washing soda 1/2 cup borax in a one gallon container add 2 hot cups of water so washing soda & borax dissolve, then I fill the gallon with water I leave room enough to add 1/2 cup of dawn 1/2 cup of tide ultra stain detergent! Then I shake it! Voila! Your all set to do laundry! if I’m washing whites I add Oxyclean as well! If you have grease stains squirt straight dawn on fabric scrub with a brush & throw to wash! I also use vinegar for rinse instead of softener!
I’m all for easy DIY recipes. I landed on this site to see if it was similar to what I was doing and was surprised to see that this recipe calls for non-eco friendly dishwashing detergent. Has anyone tried Ecover or Seventh Generation free and clear dishwashing liquid? I have chemical sensitivities and refuse to use petroleum products.
Jennifer Galligan says
I’ve been using this detergent for a few weeks now (I’m on my 2nd batch), and I’m very happy with it. The clothes come out clean and soft, and smelling good, without the heavy perfumes so many soaps have now. I do add a little essential oil (about 15-20 drops) of lavender or whatever for a bit of a scent. It’s so easy to make! I’ve had no trouble finding washing soda or borax at my local supermarkets. I’ve made other DIY detergents, and this one is by far the quickest and easiest, as I prefer a liquid. I’ve finally found my new laundry soap!
I have been using this for a year or so and am happy with the results. I use the blue Dawn dishwashing liquid but also add some Dawn green that I don’t like for dishes but like the fragrance in the clothes detergent. (I also didn’t know that there are differences in Dawn…dishwashing detergent vs. hand soap…I looked at the label and sure enough.) If you belong to Costco, you can get Dawn on coupon there once in a while. I live in California and we have some stores where the item costs aren’t that bad (like Winco). I use this in my he machine and add more if I am using a large load of towels, whites, etc. I also do an extra rinse to make sure any residue is removed…but I did this when I used regular (store bought) detergent as well. I also put a scoop of OxiClean in my loads for almost all types of clothing.
It’s me again…I forgot to say that I use a Sharpee to write the recipe on my container so it’s readily available when I need to make more. Also, I put the Dawn in a liquid measuring cup and then slowly add water to the top and let it sit while I mix up the powders and water. When I need to pour in the Dawn, it’s thinned out and easier. I then refill the cup until my container is full and most of the Dawn will be out of the cup and into the container.
I have used other DIY recipes, but I will be giving this one a go next time I need to make a batch!!
Apple Hill Cottage says
I made a batch this summer, though it wasn’t this recipe. Trouble is I have a heck of a time finding Washing Soda. I never have found it. I made by own by baking baking soda, and I never was sure if it was really baked enough. Some people say Walmart carries it, but the 4 walmarts i’ve gone to don’t have it. I know I can order it online, but I just haven’t gotten the energy to do that…
Rebekah L. says
I’ve made my own laundry soap for several years, but since I need to make a batch today I think I’m going to try yours this time (and avoid grating the Zote!).
Is it possible to use this in a front load washer? I always thought you had to buy the HE soap.
The Domestic Fringe says
Well, I don’t have a front loader, so this is not from personal experience, but I have read that you can. Just be careful about how much you use.
You can definitely use this with a front loader! I use a different but similar recipe, and it works great in my front loader. You just use less than you would need in a regular washer so it goes even farther.
That’s impressive! We have lots of sensitive skin issues, as well. So, it’s good to know that it works for those folks, too. Thanks for mentioning the less is more part. We’ve learned from having a front loading washer that you really do need just a little bit of soap.
I’m wondering if it would be possible to use this for folks who have allergies? Maybe swap out the blue Dove dish soap for one of the fragrance free clear ones? Or does it need to be the Dove? Me likey the idea, though!
The Domestic Fringe says
This recipe is with Dawn Dish Soap. I suppose you can use any soap you want, although Dawn is a great grease/stain fighter. My son has bad allergies and reacts to some other laundry detergents and doesn’t to this, so you may try it. I’d definitely try substituting what you are comfortable with though.