DIY Laundry Detergent

Shortly after our daughter was born, I decided to try making my own homemade laundry detergent. I realized how much more laundry I would be doing with a new baby (especially once we started cloth diapering!) and was intrigued by the idea of saving money and also just using one type of detergent for the whole family instead of shelling out for fancy baby detergent. Well? That first batch lasted me SIX MONTHS and cost less than $25 to make. I just made my second batch this weekend and figured I’d share how I make it for anyone else out there who’d like to try it!



1 Box of Borax

1 Box of Washing Soda

3 Bars of Fels-Naptha

1 Container of OxiClean - optional

Some people make their homemade laundry soap without the OxiClean to keep it more natural, but I wanted the extra stain fighting boost since I’m washing cloth diapers and Anthony’s dirty work clothes. Making the detergent powder is simple enough! The hardest part is grating the Fels-Naptha bars. I use a fine cheese grater because the smaller pieces dissolve better in the wash. It takes some time and muscle, but I don’t mind since I only have to do it once every six months! You just pour all of the ingredients into the container you plan to store it in. Stir or shake the mixture until evenly distributed and you’re done!

I store mine in a 2 gallon glass jar and it lasts me 6 months. I’ve heard it recommended to use anywhere from 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup of powdered detergent. I just use 1/4 cup every time, but you could experiment with using less to see how long a batch will last you! I’ve also read that it’s best to use warm or hot water with powdered detergents. I usually wash our laundry on warm with a cold rinse.

Another tip: You might have to do a little looking, but all the ingredients should be available in the laundry aisle of your local grocery store. For my fellow York County folks, I found that my closest Giant doesn’t carry the washing soda but the Weis across the street has everything you need to make this. I have seen the washing soda at other Giant stores around town though.

Have you ever made your own laundry detergent? Do you use the same ingredients I do, or have you had better luck with others?

I’d love to know what works for you! Comment below or join the conversation on Instagram!