Friday, June 15, 2012

{DIY (powder) cloth diaper safe laundry detergent}

I really liked my other laundry detergent recipe for our clothes. But once i started cloth diapering, i needed something that had a little better cleaning power for the poo stains.{sorry TMI, but its true!!} So i havent been using it for months. 
We have been using Rockin green Laundry detergent for our cloth diapers & our clothes & love it! 
But it gets expensive.. like $30 a month. Doesnt sound like a ton, but it adds up over time..{about $360 a year.} & lets be real for a second, We're young, we're married, & we're parents! Lots of added expense & not a lot of extra money. We're all about quality, but not all about dishing out lots of money.. so if we find a product that is a lot cheaper that works just as well as the name band product, we're all for it! 

So, i started experimenting with some recipes i found online, trying to find a homemade detergent that i could make for a lot cheaper that works just as well!
 & I did!! 
Here is my recipe :) 
You will need:
a large bucket with a lid
2 4lb boxes of baking soda
a 3 lb tub of oxi clean
1 box of washing soda
1 box of borax
3 bars of Dr. Bronnors organic vegan soap
 {I did rose, lavender & eucalyptus}  
{I know there are only 2 bars of soap in the pic.. oops!}
Put the grating atatchment on your cuisinart {Or use a cheese grater}
& grate your bars of soap
Pour grated soap into a bowl or onto a plate just for a moment..
Put the regular attatchment on your cuisinart 
& pour your soap shreds back in
Pulse the soap shreds until they look like parmesan cheese :) 
Pour all ingredients into your big bucket
I added half a bottle of purex laundry booster crystals. 
this is optional & not necessary
But they smell so yummy
& they dont irritate G's skin, so i went ahead & added them
Mix it up really well
I got on the floor & used my arms to mix it up 
& you're done!! 
You only need to use 1-2 Tablespoons per load!
Put a portion of your detergent into a smaller container for easier access.
{Im kind of partial to jars}


We really like this detergent. 
It seriously works just as well as our other expensive detergent 
It gets all the poo stains out of our diapers {Sorry TMI}
& it makes all of our other laundry sparkley clean & so yummy smelling!
Best part,  it only costs $25 to make 
& it will last us almost a whole year!! 

$25 a year vs. $360 a year?
I think the DIY detergent wins :) 


55 comments:

  1. Where did you shop......and did you get everything at the same place?

    Kiersten

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  2. Does it work in washers that ask for High efficiency detergent?!

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    1. Ours is an HE washer & it works great! I use 1 tablespoon of detergent for regular loads & 2 tablespoons for loads of dirty diapers

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  3. Is G on solids? Do you wash the poo out of the diapers before putting them in the laundry if she is? I'm currently experimenting with solids but since that makes Scarlett's poo non-water soluble I have to rinse them first and I'm trying to find the best way! Thanks in advance :)

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    1. hello michelle!
      we too have been experimenting with solids.. she will eat them for a couple of days right before bed & then completely lose interst in the days following.. so we quit & wait a week then try again.
      i do rinse out her REALLY poopy diapers, just to prevent staining {since im planning on using these diapers on as many of our kiddos as i can over the years!} & we have a diaper sprayer attatched to our toilet which makes it super easy. but the lightly poopy ones, i just throw right into the wash & i havent had any issues, although her poo is still pretty watery

      We have an HE washer & I set the washer as so: Normal wash + pre wash + hot water+ extra rinse + heavy soil
      the load takes about an hour and a half but the diapers come out great! & i pre treat with Biokleen, its a lime enzyme stain remover. Welove it

      One of my friends that is also using fuzzibunz, uses a liner in her diapers.
      she says its super easy & she doesnt have to rinse the diapers before hand because you just lift the poo right of the diaper & flush it!
      Only issue is the added expense
      I really want to try this though :)

      Hope that helps!

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    2. Thanks Ashley! It sure does. We're doing the same. Scarlett is into it sometimes but most time she isn't so her poo is still watery like G's. I have heard of the liners and I figured we'd try those when the poo is more solid and easier to remove.

      I appreciate the advice!!! And i'm totally going to make some mother's milk popsicles, what a great post!

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    3. At Ashley Johnston you can buy cloth liners and you swoosh the poo on them off in the toilet and it doesn't matter if the liners stain but the diapers won't. They are also good if you have to use diaper cream as it doesn't wreck the absorbency of your diapers because it only hits the liner

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  4. Hi!

    Would you mind posting the size of the boxes of the ingredients? I am looking online and there are a few sizes for the baking soda, though the washing soda and borax seem to be a more standard size. Thanks so much!

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    1. Hello!
      so sorry!
      Baking soda: 2 lb
      washing soda: 3.7 lb
      oxi clean: 3 lb
      borax: 76 oz
      :)

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  5. Hi, just wondering...will all this last you about one year for all your clothes and diapers or just your diapers? thanks!

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    1. Both! Depending on how much you use
      For example, our family of 3, we dont have a ton of laundry
      but a family of say, 6 or 7? will definitely use lots more

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  6. Is that the only kind of bar soap you can use? Not sure where I would be able to find it in Alaska! Thanks! :)

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    1. Hello!
      Im sure you could use fels naptha or zote soap just the same :) Or if you are really wanting to use the Dr. Bronners, i think you can buy it on amazon! Good luck!

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  7. I just want to make sure that we are supposed to do 2 boxes of 2 lb baking soda... Because it looks like you have 2 of the 4 lb boxes instead. Just dont want to mess it up! Thanks!

    Btw where did you find your mason jar? :)

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    1. oh my, i dont know what i was thinking.. they are 4 pound boxes. My mistake
      I found our mason jar at michaels craft store

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    2. so this calls for 2 boxes of 2 or 4lb boxes. I just want to make sure Im reading the response right. have all my ingredients now but I may have to buy one more box.
      Excited to try!!!

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    3. thanks so much!!!

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  8. After about two weeks of searching for ingredients, I now have what I need :) WAHOO. Although, I was wondering about the Purex crystals? I have used those for a long time in my laundry and love them, but I'm worried about using them on cloth diapers since they say fabric softeners are not recommended. Have you noticed any issues or have any insight regarding this?

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    1. hey!
      I use the purex scent booster crystals, not the fabric softener.
      I havent noticed a build up at all! I havent had to strip my diapers once!
      Hope that helps :)

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  9. Hey, thanks for this post! I'm just entering the cloth diaper world - and got the bumgenius all-in-one diapers...they say to not use any baking soda, so you know why? Which diapers are you using, and do you know if this will work on bumgenius? Thanks so much!

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    1. Hello!
      Im not very familiar with an "all in one" diaper. & I dont know much about bumgenius either, sorry!
      But from what i can tell, from comparison in person, the bumgenius diapers look a lot like my fuzzibunz, & the detergent has worked for my fuzzibunz.

      I use Both Fuzzibunz & G diapers. Out of the 2, i prefer our G diapers. Among other reasons, they are much easier, to be very honest.

      At some point, no matter what you do with your diapers, you will have to strip your diapers just because of build up of yuckies.
      G is 9 months & i just had to strip her diapers for the first time & now they are like new again.

      So i guess what im trying to say is, no matter what you do, you will have to, at some point, strip your diapers.
      So it is up to you if you would like to try it! I think that is the worst that can happen

      the detergent really has worked so well for us thus far : ) but i will let you know, i have friends who told me about how they have used tide or all {free & clear} successfully with their cloth diapers, & we have started going back & forth between our homemade detergent & tide free & clear, just for a little change :) & they both work great!

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  10. Do you use this recipe on all of your laundry or just on cloth diapers? I'm going to be CDing here in the spring and I'm looking for a recipe that I can use on everything to make like simpler (and be less confusing for the husband). Thanks!

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    1. Hello! We use it on all of our clothes/diapers/sheets/ Everything!

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    2. Fantastic! I am SO going to give this a whirl!

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  11. Would this work as well without using the Borax?

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  12. Just found this- I am so thrilled to give it a whirl.
    I'm trying to avoid the waste of buying those stilly jugs of laundry detergent. I don't have a HE washer, but I think it ought to still work.
    I also don't have a baby, but this looks like it will be great on everything else that needs a good washing, too!
    Thank you!

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  13. Hello!! I am wanting to try this but worried about using a powdered laundry detergent, I have always used liquid. Does it ever get clumped? I am dying to start cloth diapers as well but so confused where to start ;/

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    1. Hi!
      I have never had issues with it being clumpy :) It works really well!

      As for advice on cloth diapers, i would do research before you purchase anything, everyone likes different diapers for different reasons. Before we had our daughter, i bought a bunch of fuzzibunz because that was what all of my friends were using, but we hated them, for lots of different reasons.. We ended up also buying G diapers & we love them! Look to see if there is a cloth diaper store near you {Here in AZ there is one called zoolikins}, these stores will usually walk you through how to use each different diaper.. hope that helps!

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  14. Hi ! i like but i m worried about hands care . . . .
    Some Chemicals my wife use them :)

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  15. Thanks for the recipe. It took me less than an hour to make from beginning to cleaning up my mess...not bad! And I spent about $30 on everything, used Zote laundry soap, and the Borax was HE washer specific, according to the box. I found everything at my local discount grocery store. I'm excited to test it out this week on my regular laundry and then our first baby in March!

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  16. Thanks so much for the post! I made this this Christmas for myself and a batch for my mom as she`s been having trouble with hives from commercial laundry detergent. It's solved our problems, AND it's so much more economical! Oh, and it gets our clothes even CLEANER than Tide! I have a couple of questions though.
    1) As washing soda is basically a super-baking soda, is there really a need for both, or can you just increase the washing soda? I was just wondering if you experimented with this, and don`t want to mess with the recipe if it`s your perfected version. ;)
    2) I read that no soap, even castile (Dr. Borners)should be used in CDing. Has this created stripping issues for you?
    3) Do the fragrance crystals cause any issues or build-up with CDs?

    Thanks again for sharing all your great info! :)

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    1. Hello!
      Glad you are liking it :)
      I havent experimented with changing washing soda & baking soda amounts, sorry!
      I haven't had any issues since we started using this soap. Before, i was using rockin green, & i had to strip my diapers once..
      hope that is helpful :)

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    2. I'm SO grateful for your site! (I'm celiac too, so many of your posts are so helpful!)

      I'm glad to hear the soap and fragrance hasn't caused striping issues, (I hope it works for me as well!);) I may have answered my own question upon further research regarding washing soda vs baking soda. Apparently both have relatively sharp granular structures which can be harsh(er) on delicate clothes/CD's. BUT baking soda dissolves more readily than washing soda and therefore is more "gentle" on materials. This would also make it more soluble in warm or cold water than washing soda - good to know if you ever do non-hot washes. (Of course, if you have the time, you can pre-dissolve in a jar of hot tap water.)

      I tested the theory by mixing each (WS and BS) in separate jars of water at different temps from my various washer settings (I took the water directly from the washer - top loader - at each temp setting for accuracy). Turns out BS does dissolve much better in my water at any temp. A good home-test for all users out there, as it takes into account the varying water hardness as well! :) Just thought I'd pass that on!

      Also, I find 1/3-1/2 cup vinegar in the rise instead of ANY fabric softener is key when using the homemade laundry detergents, whether you're CD'ing or not.

      Thanks again for the great post! Cheers.

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  17. HI! I have lots of questions, I'm wanting to start making our own detergent, the more we can save on everyday things the better!

    Our little one is 9 weeks old and we have been using ALL free & clear for all of our laundry and Cloth Diapers (6-7 weeks of CDing), should I strip them before using homemade detergent. I use a brand of diapers called Alva baby (love them!) that says not to use hot water, how can I best strip them?

    Also, I am sensitive to many smells and we haven't had any around baby yet, do they have the soaps and the purex that are fragrance free, or could i use ivory soap instead?

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    1. hello!
      I've only stripped mine with super hot water & dawn dish soap {Only have had to do it one time} , so Im not sure about stripping them before switching, sorry!

      I've seen recipes where they use ivory soap, so im pretty sure its ok :) but also, Dr. Bronnors makes a scent free, baby mild soap. We love it!
      & if you're sensitive to smells simply cut out the purex crystals, they are only in the recipe for the smell :)

      Hope that helps!

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  18. Purex makes Baby safe hypoallergenic crystals now! We added those to ours and everything we wash comes out amazingly clean and smells so good! We found ours at walmart.

    http://www.purex.com/products/softeners/purex-crystals-baby

    Thanks so much for your recipe, we love it!

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  19. So I just came back to your post months later. I'm ready to start making it! We spend too much money on natural laundry detergents. Do you still love how it washes your clothes? I cloth diaper occaisionally. That's another thing I want to know. How do you have the patience for CDing? I get so lazy with it and stop doing it! I need some motivation!

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    1. Hello!
      I actually dont have anymore of it! We used a ton of it & i gave out bags of it to friends & family to try. They All LOOOVED It! We loved it too!!
      Ive just been to lazy to make another batch :) haha & my husband prefers to use Tide free & clear, so for the past couple months we havent been using it. But i loved it a lot!

      & cloth diapering, We only cloth diaper at home now. When we are out we use regular disposable diapers. We also use disposables at night, just because the triple stuffed cloth diaper was too clunky for her to sleep in, she couldnt get comfortable! We love cloth diapering. I just do a small load of diapers at the end of the day, then switch the load over when i wake up in the am. Throw away liners make it alot easier too, i dont have to like scrub out my diapers anymore. We use Bumkins liners.
      Hope that helps! & good luck!

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    2. I know your post is a several months old at this point, but I thought I would share my insight as far as motivation for sticking with the cloth diapers.
      ... Stop buying disposables. Easiest way to curb the lazies about it.
      I wash/stuff/prep all the diaper needs after everyone is in bed usually (I'm a night owl, always have been.) And then it's all set to go. I like to do it while I watch shows I like... like the neighbors, new girl, bones... :) This makes it much less tedious feeling. :) Hope that helps.

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  20. I have found that you do not need to put the soap in the food processor. You can put it into the microwave for 15 seconds- 30 seconds. I gets real puffy but if you put it into the tub, it crumbles right up!

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  21. ok so this is funny...I went to this post this morning and wrote down the ingrediants and the sizes really quickly...well when i got to the store i was looking at my notes and I wrote down 24 lbs of baking soda...Well most boxes only come in 1/2 lbs so i was thinking how on earth 24 lbs! I'm going to look like im making bombs or something crazy...so i went home and checked....that says 2- 4 lb boxes lol!

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  22. Hmmm - I'm not sure how you made this for only $25! I'm shopping online and shopping in two different places for the best prices and free shipping at both sites and it's still going to be right around $55! Wonder if it's cheaper to shop locally. Thoughts? Also box sizes on the Borax and Washing soda would be helpful since the boxes seem to come in different shapes and sizes. Thanks!

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  23. I heard that borax can cause holes in your diapers so I stopped using my homemade detergent. Have you had any issues?

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  24. Just whipped this up and am trying it out in our regular (non HE) washer with hubby's work clothes! Super excited! We ended up spending about $35 but that was because we don't have a Wal-mart nearby and Fred Meyer (Kroger) can be SUPER expensive for some stuff!

    For a regular washer should I double the amount (2 TBSP for regular clothes and 3-4 TBSP for diapers)? I didn't with this first load. Thanks for the recipe!

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  25. I have the same question as Anne.....how much should I be using for a regular washer? We made our soap yesterday and I'm anxious to use it!!!

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  26. Hello!
    Im not 100 % sure, but maybe try the amount i posted, and adjust as necessary :)

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  27. I tried many many different diapers before I decided on these. I like them because (1) they are the only ones out of all the others that I tried that held everything in and were super-absorbant for nighttime and (2) fit my big baby better than their same size competitors. If you have a large baby, these fit well. My baby also used to poop right out of other diapers and these actually contain it!

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  28. I just read the DIY laundry detergent doesn't really work, it doesn't really have a "detergnet" component...and it will lead to soap buld up in your diapers...I've been using your recipe for a month or so now so this is new to me so I wanted to see what you thought about this?

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  29. What about cold water wash . We don't have hot hooked up

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  30. Hi, I was wondering about cold water as well?? I ordered my prefolds and covers from KaWaii and they say to wash cold as they are cotton. But my wipes and liners say to was warm/hot. I wish I had noticed this before ordering them as I ordered from two different sites. Kawaii says they are made of cotton. Would it hurt to wash everything on warm/hot using this laundry soap?

    Thanks!

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    1. I always washed all of my diapers & liners on warm with this detergent and had no issues :)

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