Liquid/Gel Laundry Detergent
Use 1/2 Cup per load
Borax (located on top shelf in the laundry aisle)
Washing Soda (I use Arm & Hammer, located by the Borax)
Ivory Bar Soap or your favorite bar soap
Bucket for your detergent - I use a 5 gallon bucket w/ a lid - you want to have a lid
Optional Ingredients: 1/2 to 1 oz Essential Oils for fragrance (found at your local Health Food Store, such as Harvest Health)*** I do not use these because if you dry your clothes in the dryer the scent will dissipate in the heat.
Step 1: Shred or cut up bar of soap, I use 2 bars for my 5 gallon bucket but 1 works just fine.
Step 2: Dump shredded soap in your biggest pot of water (I usually get mine boiling, or just about there)- stir til melted.
Step 3: Add 1 Cup Borax, stir til dissolved.
Step 4: Add 1 Cup Washing Soda, stir til dissolved.
Step 5: Dump hot mixture in bucket after it is all dissolved together. Then slowly add warm water to fill the bucket. Stir periodically til it cools down. Sometimes I just dump cold water in and stir it well and that works just fine but the soap is more likely to form a thick gel layer on the top when I do that. A layer of gel on the top is fine, it still cleans great but I think the bucket lasts longer when I let it cool naturally and stir it periodically. Either way, you've got a very effective laundry soap that will clean your clothes. My initial investment was $12 for the borax, washing soda and 12 bars of Ivory soap. I probably got 25 gallons of soap out of that over time. This is the way many of our grandparents/great-grand parents cleaned their clothes. If you want a little extra whitening power - toss half a cup of baking soda into your wash. A great natural fabric softener is white vinegar, poured into the rinse water. Once your clothes dry they will NOT smell like vinegar.
~The finished soap will not be a solid gel. It will be more of a watery gel that has been accurately described as an "egg noodle soup" look.
~The soap is a low sudsing soap. So if you don’t see suds, that is OK. Suds are not what does the cleaning, it is the ingredients in the soap.