Life, How To's, and Other Various Ramblings

Laundry Detergent ($1.00 for 3 months supply) February 19, 2013

Filed under: Cleaning — threefunnyvoices @ 3:59 pm
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Like I have said before, I am always looking for a way to save a buck. I used to HATE going to the store to buy laundry soap. The stuff is out of control in the price department and half the time it doesn’t get out the crud my child grinds into his clothing.  It USED to drive me nuts… until I discovered the easiest, cheapest alternative EVER!!

All you need is:

Fels-Naptha Soap (one bar)


A Large Sauce Pan

A Cheese Grater or Food Processor

Your Old Laundry Detergent Jug (If you don’t have it, any old gallon jug will work. Just make sure you can seal it well and have a way to measure out the detergent)

A Wooden Spoon (a sturdy one!)

A large mixing bowl

A Hand blender (if you don’t have one, your trusty wooden spoon and a nice set of arm muscles will work but I highly suggest going to Walmart and picking one up. It’s well worth the $10-$20 you will spend.  We will use it a lot throughout our blog adventures)

A Funnel

Rinse your old detergent bottle well and fill it with warm water. Empty half of the water into the pan. Heat the water until it boils and turn off. While you wait for the water to boil , chop your bar of soap into small chunks if you plan to use a food processor. Run through the food processor (using the pulse feature) until it is a mealy texture. Add it to the water on the stove. Turn water back on to low and stir frequently, until soap is dissolved. Once the soap has dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and let sit. ( I usually start the process about a half hour before nap time so that it can sit and cool during nap)

You will know its cool when it looks like a gelled pudding. At this point, I take a spatula (or knife or scoop or whatever you want to use) and divide the glop into equal parts. Keeping one section separate from the rest, which I then bag up and put in the bottom of my fridge.(It keeps it from getting gooey and less chance of a mess)

Now, take the portion that you set aside and put it in the mixing bowl. pour the remaining water in the detergent bottle in the bowl. Fully submerged your hand blender and go to town. It will only take a minute to get the soap broken back down.  Once it is combined, pour back into detergent bottle and top off the bottle with a warm water (turn the tap on so that the water runs slowly…too fast and you will end up with serious suds). Once it’s full, place the lid back on the bottle, give it a few good shakes and call it a day.

I LOVE this stuff. It’s all I use. It takes care of the boy crud and any stink…and it has the added bonus of making my laundry area smell delightful. I love it.

You may notice that as it sits, it starts to get thick…just add a little more water to it and give it a shake. If it gets too thick you can always pour it back into the mixing bowl, add water and run the hand blender through it.

Good Luck…let me know what you think!




It is SO important that you do not let this boil. Once it starts it takes it forever to stop and it will do one of three things:

1. Continue to boil even though you have removed it from the hot burner

2. Make a huge mess

3. A combination of 1&2 PLUS the added bonus of boiling up out of the pan and all over your hands. NOT FUN!!

Please be careful!


3 Responses to “Laundry Detergent ($1.00 for 3 months supply)”

  1. Just going back and reading some of your entries… sounds worth a try. I followed what you were saying up until you divided up the gelled mix. Divide into how many parts? Do you refrigerate all of it before adding the water and mixing?

    • Hey Sarah,

      I was able to divide mine into 8 equal parts. I only refrigerate the remaining 7 “portions”. I am not sure that it is even necessary to do so, I just always have. I have fears of finding great gobs of mold on my laundry detergent if it sits for months on end so I just throw it in the fridge.

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