Saturday, March 23, 2013

Homemade Heavy Duty Plus Laundry Detergents

What you will need depending on the recipe you choose:

You don't need a large variety of products to make your detergent.  If you keep 20 Mule Team Borax, Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda, the soaps of your choice, Arm & Hammer Baking Soda and you are set to make detergent at any given moment.  You will never have to run out without a way to make more and it lasts so long.  You only need 2 to 3 tablespoons per load or 2 tablespoons per HE washer load. Use less for smaller loads.  You save so much money and just think you have made it yourself!  I do advise you to wear a mask because these powders can do a number on your sinuses and you probably don't want to breathe it all in anyway.  These are still safer than the chemical added detergents on the shelf.  The Borax and
The brands of soaps have been used for many, many years. 
So be adventurous make your own

 Recipe One

3 Cups Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
3 Cups 20 Mule Team Borax
2 bars Octagon Soap
1 bar Castile Soap
3/4 cup Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (optional for hard water)
Food processor
container with lid
label for container
A Mask


Grate the soaps
Add the soaps and dry ingredients into the processor a little at a time if you have to
chop finely and mix thoroughly
This is a very good detergent but
If you want extra cleaning power 
add 1 cup Oxi Clean 

**Be sure to label it with fabric safe bleach**
because you might not want that added bleaching in every load.

I made this recipe some with the Oxi Clean and some without both did really well! I was impressed, and the girls liked the smell.  They don't like the smell of the Fels Naptha.
It cleans much better than the recipe I had posted earlier in The First Homemade Laundry Detergent HERE which is a fair all around regular detergent.

Recipe Two
3 Cups Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
3 Cups 20 Mule Team Borax
1/2 bar of - 14 oz. Bar Zote Soap
1 bar Octagon Soap 
1 bar Fels Naptha Soap
3/4 cup Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (optional for hard water)
( If you want a fabric safe bleach)
Add 1 cup Oxi Clean 
Be sure to label it with fabric safe bleach
**Note I do not recommend using this detergent always in warm water with your darks.  If you are going to wash your darks with this added Oxi Clean then I suggest you use cold water to prevent fading of your darks.**

Make detergent according to instructions above in first recipe

I have also made this before with the Oxi Clean and a batch without.  They work really well!
Again you may add the Oxi Clean for added bleaching power but be sure to label!
I personally wouldn't use the added Oxi Clean to all of my laundry it is great with whites though!
Recipe Three

1 whole bar Zote
 (5 heaping cups grated then 1 1/3 cups pea sized balls chopped in processor)
1 bar Octagon
3 Cups Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
 3 Cups 20 Mule Team Borax
 3/4 cup Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (optional for hard water)

As in earlier recipes if you want a fabric safe bleach added then add 1 cup of Oxi Clean.

Tip:  You can make laundry detergent tabs with a simple step
Add white vinegar.  Spray into some of your homemade detergent just until when mashed in your hand it will stick together.  Place in mold and leave until COMPLETELY DRY.  Put into a container with lid use 1 for front loading and 2 for top loading machines.



  1. I make a liquid version of this . But haven't tried using the oxi clean. I need to make a new batch , going to try it with the oxi clean. Thanks for the tip. I have learned so much from your blog.

    1. Michelle,
      I always learn and enjoy your wonderful blog!

  2. Michelle would you mind sharing the liquid version of this recipe??? Thanks ;)

  3. Can I use 3 bars of the castile soap instead of 2 of the octagon in recipe 1.

    1. Yes, that's the beauty of making your own. It is what works for you, the needs of your laundry. Try it and if it cleans well please let me know.

  4. Hello,
    I have been tossing Borax into my Ivory Snow powder cold water laundry washes. I later read that the Borax needed to be dissolved in very hot water or it will not dissolve in the cold water. After I did this, I left it on the counter in a bowl overnight and huge crystals developed that needed to be heated up to use again. Does the Borax you put in your dry laundry soap dissolve in cold water?

    1. I have no problems and Borax has been used for hundreds of years your great parents probably used it. It is one of the most basic ingredients in laundry cleaning and I have no problem because I do lots of laundry in cold water. Do you have a HE washer?