fbpx Skip to Content

DIY Laundry Detergent with Printable Cheat Sheet


It’s the never-ending story.

With piles of clothes and musty towels in every corner of the house, it doesn’t take long to become overwhelmed and frustrated.

Hours of washing, drying and folding are exhausting and the cost of laundry supplies can add up quickly. From pre-treating stains to making sure your laundry smells like the mountain breeze, it certainly feels like you’re spending a small fortune just have to have clean clothes to wear.

It all started when I read an eye-opening blog post about the toxins in dryer sheets. Obviously I can’t control everything around me, but I can change what toxins I allow in my house. I knew I wanted to start making small changes in our home and the laundry room seems like the best place to start.

As my quest continued, I learned that out of 44 dryer sheets, only 5 scored above a C, on an A-F scale. (In fact, there was only 1 B, 4 Cs and the rest were Ds and Fs!) Even the products who claim to be “green” failed miserably. But dryer sheets are an easy fix. Some essential oils and dryer balls were all we needed!

DIY laundry detergent that costs .05¢ per load and isn't filled with harmful toxins!!!

In an effort to cut costs and the amount of unhealthy chemicals in our home, I set out to find a cheap yet effective DIY laundry detergent that ACTUALLY works.
The perfect DIY laundry detergent for our family would be something that didn’t take much time, effort or storage space yet could still remove the evidence of my kids’ adventures. We finally found the perfect recipe for our family and haven’t looked back.

Super-Simple 3 ingredient Laundry Powder:

1 cup of Borax

1 cup of Super Washing Soda

1 cup of grated soap

Mix all ingredients together well and store in an airtight container. Use 1 tablespoon per load. For extra dirty clothing, use 2 tablespoons.

Liquid DIY Laundry Detergent:

5 gallon bucket with air tight lid

1 cup of Borax

1 cup of Super Washing Soda

1 cup of grated soap

4 cups of water

Melt soap in boiling water. Fill a 5 gallon bucket halfway with HOT water, then add the soapy water. Stir well, adding in the rest of the ingredients until dissolved. Fill the bucket the rest of the way up with hot water and let sit overnight. It will thicken.

The next day, fill a clean laundry soap dispenser halfway with your soap. Fill the rest of the way up with water and stir well. You must shake well before each use.

DIY Reusable Dryer Sheets:DIY laundry detergent that costs .05¢ per load and isn't filled with harmful toxins!!! This one ACTUALLY works!

Lint-free cotton

White Vinegar

Cut cloth into 5×5 square. (I like to use towels, t-shirts or baby washcloths.) Fold and place in an airtight container. Add enough vinegar to soak them.

Squeeze out excess vinegar and toss into the dryer with your laundry. If you want them to smell good, add 10-15 drops of essential oils.

Recipe Tips and Tweaks:

  • I like to use Fels Naptha soap because it is a natural stain remover and is gentle enough to use on baby clothes. My next choice would be Zote. The brand of soap doesn’t matter much, just be sure that it is an actual SOAP. (Dove soaps are not actual soap but are “beauty bars.” Dove will not get your clothes clean.) Other good options include Irish Spring, Ivory or Dr. Bronners.
  • You can add one cup of Oxiclean to your recipe. Some people think it makes your clothes look new longer. I don’t personally add any and haven’t had any issues.
  • Everything in the recipe can be found in the laundry department at Wal*Mart or Target. You an also pick up the supplies on Amazon so you never even need to leave your house. 🙂
  • The box of Borax  and Super Washing Soda should cost about $4 each and the Fels Naptha should be around $2.50 per bar. One bar is more than enough for this recipe.

    A Few Things You Should Know:

    DIY laundry detergent that costs .05¢ per load and isn't filled with harmful toxins!!! This one ACTUALLY works!

  • Your clothing will not smell like anything when you use this recipe. It will not smell good. It will not smell bad. It certainly won’t smell dirty. They will smell like nothing, which is a great thing! If you wish to add a scent, you can use 10-15 drops of essential oils. I prefer lavender or lemon.
  • Vinegar is a natural softener. The smell will disappear when it dries.
  • If you add essential oils, be sure to use the same scent in both your laundry detergent and your dryer sheets. You don’t want the scents competing against each other.
  • The sun is a natural stain remover. If you have a stubborn stain, try hanging your clothing on the line or even just placing it in a super-sunny window. The sun will remove the stain in just a few hours!
  • This particular DIY laundry detergent recipe lasts a.long.time. I generally make a batch of detergent about every 9 months. This is with my family of 5’s regular laundry,towels and bedding, as well as my super-dirty-construction-worker husband’s clothing.

We’ve created this handy printable to keep in your laundry room. Since you’ll only be making your DIY laundry detergent a couple of times a year, you will likely forget the recipe. Keep this cheat sheet handy so you’ll never have to go searching for an effective recipe again!

Simply click on the image and then print, right from your browser!

DIY laundry printable from Homeschool Hideout!

We Wanna Know:

What’s your favorite laundry secret?