Friday, 9 November 2012

$2 Laundry Liquid (Back To Bascis)

How much money do you spend on laundry detergent each month? We're continuing our Back To Basics month with homemade laundry liquid. This laundry liquid is free of nasty chemicals, safe for the environment, safe for young sensitive skin and budget friendly....coming in at around $2 per TEN LITRES.

Seriously, if you can make 2min Maggi noodles then you can make this homemade laundry liquid. From start to finish (from washing your bottles to filling them with detergent) it takes about half an hour. And best of all, it works out to about TWENTY CENTS PER LITRE.  You can always half the recipe and make 5Ltrs for your first time.

Once upon a time I used to spend $10 per Litre on Dynamo. A few years ago, my mother started working as a Moderator in one of these "going green in the suburbs" forums that have been popping up in recent years and she started hinting that there were things around the home that I would benefit from doing differently.

I heard...but I didn't really listen. It took almost three long years before the penny finally dropped. I've gone from spending a fortune on cleaning products (Dynamo, Spray & Wipe, shower cleaners, toilet cleaners, etc, etc) to spending about $10-$15 per month on a few ingredients that I use to make my own cleaning products. 

I've also drastically cut the amount of chemicals that my children are exposed to. Have you ever taken the time to read the label on a bottle of Spray & Wipe? Notice the poisons warnings? The instructions that tell us to "consult a doctor immediately" if the product is ingested? So why do we clean our bench tops and cutting boards with it?! 

Todays post is the first of many that might have you re-thinking the cleaning products you bring into your home.


2 cup Lux Flakes
½ cup washing soda
½ cup bicarb soda
Essential oils (optional)
½ cup Borax (optional) 
 Borax is added to give your detergent even more dirt busting power. There are some serious nasties in Borax. If you want to re-use your grey water leave the Borax out. If you have hard water, then you'll probably need to add some. If your baby has skin allergies or you're trying to go green then replace the Borax will Bicarb Soda.

You'll also need:
  • A pot
  • A bucket
  • A funnel
  • And 10 litres worth of bottles to store your detergent in.
Step 1 - In the Kitchen
Put 1.5 litres of water in a pot & add the soap (flakes or grated), the bicarb, Borax and washing soda. Bring the pot to a gentle boil, stirring regularly. Keep boiling until the soap flakes have completely disoved and you're left with a lump free liquid soap.  

Step 2 - In the Laundry
Most mop buckets are about 9Ltrs - fill your bucket with cold water and add the pot of liquid soap. Stir thoroughly.  If you'd like to scent your laundry liquid then add a few drops of your favourite essential oils at this stage. 

Step 3 - Storing Your Laundry Liquid
Use a funnel to carefully fill prewashed bottles with the laundry liquid. There you have it! TEN LITRES of  effective laundry liquid for about $2 worth of ingredients. 

Step 4 - Using Your Laundry Liquid
This detergent does settle and seperate over time so remember to give the bottle a good shake before adding it to the washing machine. This liquid is safe to use in front & top loader washing machines. 

DIRECTIONS: 1/4cup of liquid per wash

For Your Information
Washing Soda is not baking or bicarb soda. You can find it in the laundry detergent aisle at most local supermarkets.

For more information about this and other green cleaning recipes check out the Grandmother of Going Green and renowned author Rhonda Hetzel's Down To Earth Blog or visit the Down To Earth Forum 

Budget friendly & chemical free cleaners. How to make your own citrus cleaner (ideal for bench tops, toilets & everything in between) out of old orange peels.

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