How to Make Powdered Laundry Detergent

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Saving Money with Homemade Powdered Detergent

In tough economic times, savvy families will often begin looking for ways of saving money. Homemade laundry detergent can be stored for months, uses only 1 tablespoon at a time to clean tough loads of laundry and works out to just pennies a load. Try making powdered detergent at home for a simple detergent that saves money while fighting tough stains.

Why Make Powdered Detergent?

Laundry detergent is something every household uses, and most people probably don’t give a thought to. Simply grab a bottle of detergent from the laundry aisle in the grocery store, pour a capful into the washer and retrieve clean clothes. So why make detergent at home?

Making powdered detergent has several benefits to consider.

  • Fewer chemicals go into its makeup, which is better for the environment and the clothing being washed
  • Making powdered detergent is extremely economical, a large container will last 6 months or more and only 1 tablespoon is needed to do a load of laundry
  • Homemade powdered detergent works well on tough stains and is safe for all clothes
  • Homemade powdered detergent will not suds up and is perfect for small washing machines

Homemade Laundry Detergent Ingredients

The quantities of this recipe can be adjusted by 1/2 or 1/4 if desired, these quantities will result will fill a large bucket and last for 4 – 6 months worth of laundry at 1/8 cup at a load.

  • 2, 76-oz Boxes or 152-oz of Borax Laundry Booster
  • 2-3/4, 55-oz Boxes or 152-oz of Washing Soda
  • 2 Cups of Baking Soda
  • 4 Bars, Grated Fels Naptha Soap
  • Few Drops of Essential Oil if Desired


  1. Grate the Fels Naptha Soap to a fine powder, a food processor can be used for this step
  2. In a large bucket with a lid, combine all ingredients and stir well
  3. Use 1 tablespoon of detergent per load, for extremely soiled laundry 2 tablespoons can be used. The detergent will not suds up, but will clean the laundry thoroughly even with this small amount, so be careful not to over add.


To enhance the clothes washing process, try these tips:

  • If the clothing comes out feeling stiff, lower the amount of detergent used per load, particularly in high-efficiency washing machines. As each washer is different, it may be necessary to adjust the detergent accordingly; start with 1 tablespoon and increase or reduce as needed.
  • A cup of vinegar can also be added to the rinse cycle as a natural, chemical free fabric softener. Once the clothes have thoroughly dried, the smell of vinegar will not remain.
  • Add water to a small amount of detergent and rub directly into a stain to pre-treat heavily solid clothes before placing them into the washing machine.

Make powdered laundry detergent at home and know that chemicals, stains and costs will all be reduced in the household.

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