Best Laundry Detergent Recipe

Okay, so I know you’ve all seen the DIY Laundry recipes floating around Pinterest!  Well, I finally decided to give it a try and I’m soooooo glad I did!

This Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe is amazing!

My clothes have NEVER smelled so fresh—and there’s no perfumes or harsh chemicals—so it’s perfect for my sensitive skin.

DIY Laundry Detergent

Best DIY Laundry Detergent! $20 equals a full year of washes!!

I was hesitant to make this at first because I have EXTREMELY sensitive skin.

We’ve been using ALL Free & Clear for years because anything else causes me to break out and we just recently discovered the Little Man has the same allergy (yeah, we spent a day in the ER to find out he had hives from laundry detergent—not a fun day!).

After doing LOTS of research I settled on giving this recipe a try and I couldn’t be happier!  This stuff is POWERFUL and GENTLE.  It works great in a regular washing machine and HE machines too.

You only need 1 TBS because there’s no fillers like you find in retail laundry detergent.  Sometimes I throw in another 1/2 TBS if the clothes are REALLY dirty (like we had an explosive diaper dirty) but 1 TBS is perfect for everyday.

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Alright, ready for the Laundry detergent recipe?



2 Gallon Container (I got this beauty for $10 at Walmart- then used my Silhouette Cameo to cut the vinyl lettering).

1 Container OxiClean (store brands work too- but there’s usually a good coupon around for this one and makes it cheaper)

3 Bars of Lever 2000 (or any bar soap that you choose)

1 Box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda

1 Box of Baking Soda

1 Box of Borax

Everything you see in the picture above I bought at Walmart for $30.01 (including tax) without any coupons….if you look for coupons you can probably get everything above MUCH cheaper!

Here are some of my favorite coupon sources:

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Okay, now that you have the materials, it’s time for the easy part of making your own homemade laundry detergent:

Using a grater (larger holed graters are better or else you’ll clog the holes)- grate your bars of soap and combine all ingredients!  I would grate 1 bar and then mix in 1/3 of all the other ingredients in the large container and repeat till all ingredients are mixed in.

That’s it!  Easy Peasy!  And your clothes are going to smell oh so fresh!

This project actually took less than 20 minutes—I think the majority of my time was actually spent putting the vinyl on the glass container!

Best DIY Laundry Detergent

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  1. Kristin says:

    Do you know of a good substitution for borax?

    • Melissa says:

      I’ve heard you can use baking soda and vinegar as a substitute…but I haven’t tried it. Sorry I don’t have better advice. :)

  2. How well does this work on baby clothes or mens sweaty, construction work clothes? The homemade version I am using now uses the same ingredients (different amounts) doesn’t do so good on real dirt but does fine on me and my daughters clothes.

    • Melissa says:

      I haven’t tried it with construction work clothes but it works great on baby clothes. My son has VERY sensitive skin and it works great! We’ve been using it for about 7 months now and I still LOVE it (and we’re only half way through the first batch I made)! For heavily soiled clothes I would try adding a cup of white vinegar and maybe use a stain pre-treater spray.

  3. I often add borax or washing soda to my wash so I know how well these 2 products work without harming clothes. I have never used OxyClean. Do I need to worry about it causing bright colored clothes to fade?

  4. Linda Watkins Jones says:

    Can you use it in HE washers?

  5. Could I substitute the lever soap for fels naptha? And if so how many bars of that should I use? I love the way it smells so I’m hoping I can use that to try this recipe out cus something seems lacking in the recipe I’m using now. Thank you!! :-)

  6. Just made this today. I used Dial soap and also added in a large contained of Purex crystals. 1st load is in the washer now. :) This makes doing laundry so fun. lol!

  7. Just whipped up my first batch and can’t believe I’m actually excited to do some laundry! Do you really only use 1 Tbsp per load?

  8. What fonts did you use?

  9. looks good but cant use borax with septic :(

  10. This is a great soap recipe. This is the first time I have seen a soap recipe using the Lever 2000. I bet it really is great smelling! Thanks so much for sharing this at the Living Big on Less Money Series!

  11. I Am Getting Ready To Make The Diy Laundry Detergent. Is The 1T. For A Large Load Only Or DO You Use Less With A Med Or Small Load? Thank You!

    • I use 1T for a regular load…if it’s especially dirty or a large load I will do 1.5T. I don’t really make an adjustment for a small load but I’m sure you could use less if you wanted to.

  12. What size box of baking soda did you use? The one in the picture looks pretty big. I bought a 64 oz box – is that too much?


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