2 Ingrediants, Water, Laundry Soap in 1 Hour or Less

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About: I am married with two children. Spring, summer, and fall are my very favorite times of the year. I enjoy working in the yard, sewing, cooking, quilting, gardening, and creating. I do this to keep my sanity.
Several years ago I began making my own laundry soap.  My sister shared her experience with me while I was visiting her.  She has always been a loyal customer of Tide products.  She told me this was comparable to Tide.  I was sold on it after seeing for myself how simple it was to make and how well it cleaned the laundry.  The laundry smelled nice also.  After I returned home I began making it for myself.  I experienced the same results having hard water in my area.  I have limited the impact on the environment as well as the resources by making my own.  Here is the method and recipe that we have been using with great success.   The really good news about this soap is it cost just pennies to make.  Zote soap comes in different scents as well as unscented for those of you who have allergies.  This recipe can be used in front load washers by reading my instructions in the tutorial.  

  • 1 Box of Super Washing Soda approximately $5.00.
  •  
  •  Consider you only need 1 cup to make 3 gallons of soap.
  •  
  • 2 Bars of Zote soap approximately $1.00 each.
  •  
  • These figures are based on calculations I did a couple of years ago.  
  •  
  • Prices have really gone up,  so I don't know how much it would cost on today's market.  
  •  
  •  I bought mine online and bought a lot that I am still using up because I live in a small town and stores here  don't have the Washing Soda. 

Step 1: Ingredients and Tools

INGREDIENTS 
  • 1 Box Super Washing Soda.
  • 2 Bars of grated Zote bar soap.
  • 3 Gallons hot water.
tools:
  • 1 Plastic milk jug.
  • 1 Five  Gallon bucket with lid.
  • 1 Cheese grater.
  • 1 ladle.
  • 1 Slotted long handled spoon.
  • 1 Long handled whisk.
  • 1 Cup measuring cup.
  • 1 large pan.
  • 1 Plate.
Please Note:  Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda is not baking soda.  It is a washing soda.  There is a difference.  This product can be difficult to find in certain rural areas. 

If you go to the Arm & Hammer website they have a zip code search  where you can buy the Washing Soda.  Here is the link:  http://www.armandhammer.com/Products/WhereToBuy.aspx.

I have found Super Washing Soda at:
Albertsons, Hardware stores, Brookshire's, and in some Walmart stores.  

Zote soap I have found at Big lots, Lawrence Brother's Market, Walmart, and Farmer's Market in my area.  

A product search online will prove beneficial.  




Step 2: Grate Zote Soap

Using the cheese grater:

  • Place a plate on the table or counter.
  •  
  • Place the cheese grater on the plate.
  •  
  • Grate 2 bars of Zote soap into shredded pieces.
  •  
  • Set aside until later.
Please note:  Sometimes when you buy the Zote it is dry and powdery when you grate it.  This is OK.  If it is fresh it looks more like carrots that have been grated.   


Step 3: Pour Water Into Bucket

Pour water into bucket:


  • Pour 2 1/2 Gallons of hot water into the bucket, reserving 1/2 gallon to heat on the stove top.
  • Add 1 cup of the Super Washing Soda into the hot water and sir until dissolved.



Step 4: Heat Water

Heat Water:
  • Heat about 1/2 gallon of the reserved hot water on the stove until steamy.  Not boiling! 
  •  
  • Turn off the heat.
  •  
  • Slowly pour and stir with the whisk (or slotted spoon) the shredded soap until completely dissolved.
  •  
  • Using the ladle, or slotted spoon "scoop up the liquid to see if it has dissolved completely." 
  •  
  • After the Zote soap has dissolved completely pour the contents into the bucket of water/soda mixture and stir thoroughly.





It is important to slowly add the soap and stir because if you don't you will get clumps that are difficult to dissolve.  

Step 5: Stir Occasionally

For the first 15 minutes stir occasionally, doing this makes a smoother batch.  

The soap gels up like a very soft jello.  

Sometimes it takes several hours to set and then sometimes within an hour.  I have no idea why.  If by chance it does not set up,  don't worry  you may still use it.  It will just be a little watery and maybe a little messy to put in the washer.  I usually use a long handled ladle.



 

Step 6: Washing With Soap

Here are the instructions for washing in a front load washer with this laundry soap:
  • Place dirty laundry into the washer tub.
  •  
  • Add a few tablespoons of the soap in with the clothes.  This part you will need to experiment with.  It is best to start with a small amount because these washers use much less soap.  
  •  
  • I live in an area with extremely hard water so I have to use 1/2 cup to get my clothes clean.  
  • This soap has low suds so you should not have an issue with it unless you use a whole lot of soap.  
  •  
  • If the clothes don't seem to come clean add more soap to the next load until you can figure out how much is needed.  
  •  
  • For top load washers use 1 cup as you would use regular laundry soap.  

Step 7: Final Results

The results are very good.  I can't actually show you but this is a very good soap.  In my opinion it is comparable to Tide and waaaay better than the cheap stuff, which have fillers that appear like your getting value.  

I had recently purchased some laundry soap at Sam's because I had not been feeling well.  After using the off brand because I did not like the Tide they offer at Sam's, my husband noticed the difference in his clothes and asked me not to buy that again.  I asked him why and he said it did not make his clothes feel soft.  So what does that say about this recipe?  

Step 8: Laundry Tips

If you have a front loader washer and are unhappy with wrinkled jeans change the rinse cycle to medium spin and it should make a difference.

Add vinegar to the rinse cycle for a fabric softener.

Peroxide is a good alternative to spot remover, it also removes blood.

Another way to help reduce resources is to line dry your clothes.  I am very excited because as soon as we get our lawn in I will have a clothes line.  I remember the days when my job was to hang up the laundry.  This was a pleasant chore for me because I loved the fresh smell of the laundry, especially the sheets when I carried them in.  I also appreciated the fresh outdoor smell of the sheets when I crawled into bed.

Did you know that by line drying your laundry it saves the wear on your clothes?  Yes, it is true.  It is not the washer that breaks down the fibers, it is drying them in the dryer.  

 




Step 9: Sunshiine's Final Thoughts

America has changed its buying habits.  People are concerned about our environment and they should be.  They are educated about the impact that chemicals have on the environment and our bodies.  This recipe offers a solution to some of these concerns.  

My husband is a cowboy at heart.  He was raised on a ranch and is a tough kind of guy.  I had to chuckle because over the years I have tried to sneak buying a less expensive  brand of laundry soap instead of Tide.  He itches every time I changed.  I was so delighted that this recipe did not make him itch.  

This recipe also offers a great value!  Just think 3 gallons of laundry soap for about $3.00!  That is value when you consider it cleans well.

Here is some additional information I found about these products for those who do not live in the US or who wish to know the contents of these products:

http://www.greenhome.com/info/magazine/001/soitriedit.html

http://www.ehow.com/how_5124280_use-zote.html



If you have any questions I am happy to answer them for you.  Meanwhile you have a splendorous day!  

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    56 Discussions

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    GingerSnapsAM

    2 years ago

    I'm going to share this Laundry Soap recipe to my mom.She tried making her own soap but it didn't turn out well.Thanks Sunshiine!

    1 reply
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    sunshiineGingerSnapsAM

    Reply 2 years ago

    This is a good recipe. If she has trouble, I am happy to answer questions. If she does not want to post them, send me a PM. Thanks for stopping bya nd sharing!

    sunshiine

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    babydawl43

    2 years ago

    sunshine you stated you live rual and have hard time finding the super washing soda well i hve a recipe for it homemade if you want it plse email me @dawnscott44@hotmail.com

    2 replies
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    sunshiinebabydawl43

    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks so much for sharing and do have a great week.
    sunshiine~

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    babydawl43sunshiine

    Reply 2 years ago

    thank you so much and you do the same preheat oven to 400degrees bake for 1hour line cookie sheet with parchment paper sprinkle baking soda on sheet and put in oven enjoy

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    babydawl43

    2 years ago

    sunshine you stated you live rual and have hard time finding the super washing soda well i hve a recipe for it homemade if you want it plse email me @dawnscott44@hotmail.com

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    rimar2000

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for sharing this, sunshiine!

    Here in Argentina these brands there are not, but surely I can found some equivalent.

    13 replies
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    sunshiinerimar2000

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for commenting! You might try a Google search on how to make laundry soap. I would try and find one that is a gel. I think the performance would be better. It seems to me that some recipes use borax along with Washing Soda.
    Washing Soda is a laundry soap booster. I will see if I can find something and reply to this late tonight. Have a splendorous day!

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    rimar2000sunshiine

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks, sunshiine. I will try to do this. I am thinking to get a "very dirty hands" soap too, because when I do mechanic works my hands leave difficult of clean. Maybe using a mix of sawdust and detergent... But I would add a skin protector, because detergent hurts my fingers at the side of the nails. Maybe glycerine, I don't know that.

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    lpdunwellrimar2000

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Try this: butter and sugar. Then use some mild soap to wash off the butter from your hands. Not kidding.

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    sunshiinerimar2000

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    rimar2000,

    I used to spend a lot of time cleaning grease off of stove tops and it just takes forever. Then I learned this:

    When cleaning greasy stuff, use an oil based product. Have you noticed how the top of refrigerators get really gooey and yucky? I use lemon oil, Murphy's Oil soap, or use cooking oil if I don't have any oil-based products. This loosens the hard grease and after you get it loosened you use regular soap to rinse out the oil. It It may take a few times but it sure is easier than using harsh products. It works for me! If you try this please let me know what you think. Have a good one.

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    kmatsumoto2sunshiine

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I have found just recently that laundry soap works fantastic on the stove and fridge. Especially the plastic handles. I haven't tried Murphys soap but I definately will be trying out your laundry soap recipe for the laundry and everything else. I used laundry soap this weekend in the bathtub and tiles. To my surprise it was the quickest best clean! I was not overwhelmed by strong product smell. CHEERS!!!

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    sunshiinekmatsumoto2

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I will have to try that! I am always open for new ways to clean! Thanks for sharing! Have a great holiday!
    Sunshiine

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    sunshiinerimar2000

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I hope you find the same stuff I use maybe in a different brand. This recipe does a good job. Hope the oil trick works for you! Have a pleasant day!

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    sunshiinerimar2000

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Hello again rimar2000 more people have commented on the products and what is in them that may help you find them there. You might want to come take a peek! Have a super day!
    Sunshiine

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    rimar2000sunshiine

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Yesterday I did a tentative mix: sunflower oil, detergent and sawdust. If it is aggressive to hands, I think add a bit of vinegar to low the PH.

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    sunshiinerimar2000

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    You could try sugar instead of saw dust if it is too harsh and the vinegar is a good idea!