Inspired by the Full Circle Cleaning Kit Giveaway this month, I continue to share some of my favourite natural cleaning recipes made out of ingredients you can get at the grocery store. This homemade natural eco-friendly laundry detergent is another amazing recipe I got from the folks at Full Circle. Get your stirring spoons out, because this quick, easy recipe is a winner!
For many years I have used baking soda, vinegar, lavender oil, and tea tree oil to do my washing. But, when I came across this recipe in the Full Circle Greenhouse, CleanHouse Natural Cleaning Booklet that comes with their Come Clean Natural Cleaning Set, I decided to give it a go, and I LOVE it!
This mixture is so easy to make, and your clothes will look and feel fantastic. I also like to add in some drops of lavender, rosemary, or tea tree essential oil to my wash before I put the machine on for the extra disinfecting power, and also to make my clothes and linens smell fabulous. I like to be green, but I also love gorgeous-smelling laundry.
I actually read a really fascinating article a long time ago (if I could remember where I read it, I would link to it) where a green company did a laundry study comparing the cleaning power of the major commercial laundry detergents, natural green products, food grade products like baking soda, vinegar, and castile soap, and then just plain water. The results were astounding! Their study showed that there was very little difference between the stain removal power of any method. In fact, using alkaline water almost held up just as well as detergent! What was particularly interesting to me, was that study participants associated clean laundry with the smell of the detergent. This affected purchasing choices more than anything else.
I must admit, I buy into this, and am very often led by my nose! This is why I LOVE using essential oils in my laundry. You only need a few drops, they are kind to our waterways, and they smell DIVINE! Many essential oils have powerful anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties too. Check out my article for Go Green America TV for some more ideas about how you can incorporate essential oils into your green cleaning routine.
Just a note about this recipe: when you switch from your commercial detergent to this laundry soap, the residue from your detergent can mix with the soap and cause yellowing. For your first green wash, simply use 1/3 cup of washing soda for a normal load. This will remove the detergent residue.
I will say, that you need to muscle up to make this recipe. You will need to stir it for about 5 – 10 minutes. I must admit, that for my second batch of this detergent I placed in my stand mixer after I had add the vinegar and formed a paste. I whipped it like egg whites and it was SO MUCH EASIER! About 5 – 10 minutes on a medium speed does the trick! If you don’t have a stand mixer or electric beaters, muscle up and keep stirring! Then place the mixture into a large container and allow to stand for about ½ an hour. The mixture will expand and become even more powdered, resembling a heavy powdered detergent
Then store in a sealed container in your laundry.
Got any other natural laundry tips? I would love to hear about them!
*This recipe published here with permission from Full Circle.