Making homemade powder laundry soap is easy. There are lots of different "recipes" for this but the ingredients are the same for all. 20 Mule Team Borax ($3.38), Arm & Hammer Washing Soda ($3.15) and Fels Napthia bar soap (1.99) for a total of $8.52.
Grate one Fels Napthia bar with a cheese grater. I used my attachment on my small food processor and it went quickly.
When I dumped it in my mixing bowl it measured 6 cups.
I then started adding and mixing the borax and arm & hammer alternately. I added a total of 8 cups of borax and 5 cups of arm & hammer. This was not the full box of either one. I had already used a couple cups of the arm & hammer and there is probably about 1/4 box of borax left.
It made a total of 13 cups. I dumped it in a container big enough that I could shake it and roll it around to keep it mixed.
So to comapre prices. My normal detergent is $5 for 50 loads (certain loads I only use half as much as recommended).
This cost me approximately $2.53 (3/4 box borax), $2.63 (5/6 box of arm & hammer) and $1.99 for the Fels Napthia for a total of $7.15 for 13 cups.
What will determine if this will save me is how much I will have to use per load for my laundry to come clean.
At 1/4 cup per load, I'll get 52 loads at .14 per load. Higher than my .05 to .10 a load for normal deteregent bought.
If I use 1/8 cup per load, I'll get 104 loads at .07 per load. Cheaper than my .10 a load for normal detergent BUT are my clothes going to be clean?
Some report that they only use 2 tablespoons per load. I will have to try it and see for myself with my hard water if it will work.
A couple other thoughts of mine regarding this.
1) I still have the trip to 3 different stores to get the supplies = MORE TIME AND GAS
2) The disposal is two boxes and some wax paper as opposed to one plastic bottle. Cardboard vs plastic has its pro's and con's.
3) The time of grating, measuring and mixing this together.
The whole point of me making anything homemade is to save money and be more sustainable. I'm not convinced this is true with this particular subject and I don't want to loose sight of my mission.
What is your thoughts on homemade laundry soap? Do you think it is cheaper? Does it clean your clothes as well?