Introduction: DIY Gel Laundry Detergent

About: In a valiant attempt to keep myself from dying of boredom, I create.
Years ago, a friend shared with me a recipe for homemade gel laundry detergent. I made some and really liked the results. I have since shared this recipe with my Mom and my sister and they both use it regularly.  It works really well, even fading old stains with time.  It was very inexpensive and lasted a long time; right now one batch lasts 6 months or more and cost around $5.00 for all 3 ingredients to make a batch.  This is how I make it.

Step 1:

1 bar ZOTE soap ($1.09 a bar)
2 cups (10oz - 283gm) 20 Mule Team Borax ($5.15/box - $.35/cup)
2 cups (20oz – 566gm) washing soda ($3.59/box - $.70/cup)

1 gallon (3.79 liters) cooking pot
5 gallon (19 liters) plastic bucket with lid
Large spoon or rubber scraper
Measuring cups

Step 2:

Put 3 quarts of water on to boil. 

Step 3:

While the water is heating up, use the grater to grate the Zote soap (you may use Fels Naptha, or Kirks Castile) into a pile of flakes.  Beautiful! 

Step 4:

Pour the soap flakes into the boiling water; turn the heat to medium and start stirring until all the flakes

Step 5:

have dissolved into the water making it pink. 

Step 6:

Slowly add one cup of the borax, stirring until dissolved. 

Step 7:

Add the other dry ingredients one cup at a time, stirring after each one until fully dissolved. 

Step 8:

The detergent will become thicker after each addition.

Step 9:

Dump the detergent into the 5 gallon bucket. 

Step 10:

Fill the pan two more times with hot water and dump them into the 5 gallon bucket.  Stir well and let set for 12-24 hours.  During this time the detergent will gel, and with time try to separate, so I stir it into a lumpy mess each time I use it.  ¼ cup per load of  laundry.   Enjoy!
On a Budget Contest

Participated in the
On a Budget Contest