Laundry is one of those time-consuming household chores that many people hate doing, especially for large families with kids and pets. We tend to become creatures of habit with laundry practices over time, using the same familiar brand of laundry detergent and fabric softener without giving them a second thought. However, there are benefits to making your own laundry cleaners at home with natural and non-toxic ingredients.
Here are some natural health tips for how to make your own eco-friendly laundry detergent and fabric softener and why it’s worth giving DIY recipes a try.
DIY Homemade Laundry Detergent
Not only is commercial laundry detergent expensive, but it is also packed with countless chemicals that can irritate the skin, cause headaches, and irritate allergies. One University of Washington study found that these types of products contain nearly 100 volatile organic compounds, even though none of these compounds were listed on the product labels.
To leave these chemicals out of your life, you can make a simple and economical laundry detergent at home that cleans clothes just as well or better than store-bought brands.
Here is a sample recipe.
- 2 bars castile bar soap
- Hot water
- 1 cup borax
- 1 cup washing soda
- ½ cup baking soda
- Tea tree essential oil
- Large pot
- 5-gallon bucket
- Dust mask
- Dish gloves
- Empty rinsed-out laundry detergent containers
- Put on a dust mask and gloves for safety to use while making this recipe
- Cut castile soap into chunks and then add chunks into a food processer to blend into a powder
- Place powdered soap into a pot of water and melt the soap on medium heat
- Pour mixture into a 5-gallon bucket
- Add borax, washing soda, and baking soda to the mixture
- Fill the bucket with hot water and mix well
- Allow the mixture to cool and then in 20 drops of tea tree oil
- Allow the mixture to form into a gel overnight
- Pour the gel into an old, empty, and rinsed-out laundry detergent bottle using a funnel
- Shake before use and add up to 1 cup per load of laundry
DIY Homemade Fabric Softener
Fabric softener is what makes our clothes and towels soft to the touch and comfortable to use and wear. But unfortunately, this laundry concoction is often packed with just as many chemicals and toxins as detergent. Wool dryer balls are a great way to soften fabrics during the drying cycle because they’re easy and just require you to remember to pop them in before the cycle starts.
But if you prefer a liquid fabric softener, here is a sample recipe to try.
- 1 cup baking soda
- 6 cups vinegar
- 10 drops essential oil (of your choice)
- Pour vinegar into a bowl
- Add essential oil
- Add baking soda
- Pour into a container once fizzing stops
- Add approximately 1 cup to washer during laundry cycle
Have you made your own laundry detergent or fabric softener at home? What’s your favorite recipe to use?