So. Do you want to know how to save a million dollars? Its easy - start making your own laundry soap. I know. Who does that? Um... I do! And so can you. My friend, SD, shared 'how to' with me and its so easy you've got to try it.
This is all you need to save about a million dollars over your lifetime.
A bit of background. I never considered making my own laundry soap and the only people I knew who did was that family with like 20 kids. Plus - why bother? Its so easy just to pick up some laundry soap in the store.
Or is it? I'm actually allergic to anything made by P&G, or anything that's scented so I was limited to exactly one kind of laundry soap. And it was kinda pricey so we'd get it at Sam's Club, and well, you know how that ended. Even "cheaply" at Sam's the only-laundry-soap-I-can-use was still about $11. So I figured I'd give making my own a try. My expectations were really low. The whole thing sounded ridiculous and it couldn't possibly work.
Wow, was I wrong! Home made laundry soap is GREAT! Everyone should make their own. Well, I don't know about those high efficient whirly-go-round washers, but for our regular washer this works just fine.Once you break down the cost per load its so cheap its almost incalculable. Some folks say it cost just pennies per load. How can you afford NOT to try this?
Grate the Fels Naptha - use a cheese grater. Easy peasy!
Here's what you do to save about a million dollars:
1. Go and find a clean 5 gallon bucket. I used a 40 pound kitty litter bucket, of course. I marked a five gallon line on the outside of the bucket.
2. Go and buy the following items:
- One bar of Fels Naptha soap
- A box of Arm and Hammer Washing Powder
- A box of 20 Mule team Borax
3. Grate the bar of Fels Naptha into the five gallon bucket while you bring a big pot of water to a boil. I don't measure the water, I just use a big pot. Like the one I use to boil pasta.
4. Pour the water (carefully!) into the bucket and add the grated soap. Then stir to dissolve the soap.
5. Add one cup of Arm and Hammer Washing Powder and one cup of borax to the bucket and stir like the dickens. I just use a big metal spoon. Easy peasy! Make sure everything gets dissolved.
6. Fill the bucket the rest of the way with warmish water and let it stand over nite (put the lid on so over interested cats don't get into it).
7. The next morning - Oh no! You've ruined it! Ugh! It looks like some kind of weird jello! Actually - its supposed to look like that. Go and find your big spoon and stir it all up again until its liquid. SD says it should look like "cold egg flower soup" when you are done. That's it. I know. How easy is that?
Mixing the soap and boiling water in a kitty litter bucket. How easy is that?
I keep the five gallon bucket right beside the washer and use a measuring cup to dip it out - stirring occasionally. Use about a half a cup per full load. We tend to get really really dirty around here and we've yet to need to rewash anything. I like that it isn't scented and that I can use bleach with it without any problem. If we have anything ultra-stinky (* OFG looks accusingly at Nicholas the cat who peed on my work clothes*) then I just add a little bit of a product called "Odoban" to the wash water, which knocks the stank out of anything. The first batch of home made laundry soap we made lasted for over two months. Right there we saved about $22.
The best part - besides you'll be kicking yourself for not doing this sooner? I'm not allergic to it at all. I think everything comes on fresh smelling and clean - without all those extra cleaning products or whatever they put in the commercial detergent. Of course I unraveled the marketing conspiracy long ago that you just don't need to use dryer sheets. So now we can do laundry every day of the week and twice on Sunday and it still costs us almost nothing. I figure if we keep this up we'll save about a million dollars -- or there abouts -- over the course of our lifetime.
****** Edited to add:
My pal, KC just provided this info:
For the record - it works well in the front-load high efficiency washers and I just put white vinegar in the rinse cycle - 'bout 1/4 - 1/2 cup. Softens that stiff load right up.
And, SD said the same thing about HE washers. She added that some folks who do this say it actually helps the machine and it works better.
Happy Friday everyone! Now get out there and make yourself a big old bucket of laundry soap!