DIY Laundry Detergent

If you have been following my projects, you know I am very frugal. Saving plastic jugs, bottles, upcycles, trash to treasure, etc…love to be frugal.Frugality comes in many forms and homemade laundry detergent is a great one. If you love saving money, I  have the perfect project for you. For the typical size family, you will be saving so much!

This is a DIY laundry detergent that will cost you around $45 to make, and cleans your clothes so well.. What’s really awesome is that it will last you for up to 2 years! Imagine having enough laundry detergent to last for 2 years and for just $45!

Now,  if you have a rather large family or if you do several loads of laundry per week, this may not last that long, that’s if you do several loads every day.

Would you like this easy DIY recipe?? Well, this is what you need:

I found and researched these products and found Amazon has all of these at these prices as of 5/2017.

Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small portion of any sales at no additional cost to you.  I only share products I like, used and have ordered, OR products I want.

Get all your items together. Now, you will need to grate the soap bars (Fels-Naptha) with an everyday cheese grater or a food processor. This is the only part of the process that takes any time and you do want to be sure that you get it grated rather finely. You don’t want those lumps in your laundry detergent and the finer it is, the better it dissolves.

You can mix it all together however you want. A large bucket (think 5-gallon here) You can get at Home Depot or Lowes for under $5 and it comes with a lid. This bucket does the trick nicely, just be sure that your bucket is good and clean so that you aren’t adding dirt to your laundry later.

You’re going to get about 17 pounds of laundry detergent and you only need to use about a tablespoon for each load. For really dirty loads, you can use a bit more if needed. This stuff works great and it keeps forever so no matter how long it takes you to get through it, it will be fine.

Store in the 5-gallon bucket or put smaller batches in mason jars or any other container that you can tightly lid. You don’t want moisture getting in there.

Now, if you want to change the smell, you can do that in a couple of ways. Either add a bar (you can take away a bar of the Fels-Naptha if you want) of lavender or other good-smelling soap or leave all of the ingredients intact and just add several drops of your favorite essential oils. They will add a really nice scent that will cling to your laundry and it won’t add much more to your overall cost.

You can also add scented Epsom salts that will not only give your laundry a great smell, but the Epsom salts act as a softener as well or just pay $5 for Downy or Gain crystals and add that when you are mixing up your detergent.

Even if you choose to add something for scent, you are still going to get a rather large load of laundry detergent for around $50 and that will be the only money you have to spend on laundry detergent for months and months. Imagine not having to worry about running out of laundry soap. Now imagine what you could do with all of that extra money!





  1. Kelley, would Irish Spring work as one alternative soap bars? Also, I have never heard of Fels-naptha soap? I told my hubby I was going to make this soap and he thought I was going to make lye soap like our grandmothers used to! I said, no lye! Hehe. ~Kim

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fels-Naptha contains soap consisting of sodium tallowate and sodium cocoate or sodium palmate kernelate and sodium palmate. The word “sodium” refers to sodium hydroxide, the lye used to make soap, in this case with tallow, coconut oil, palm oil or palm kernel oil. It also contains water and talc. I put a link next to it where you could see it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have allergies, so I have to use free and clear detergent and fabric softener. They hadn’t made free and clear in the sheets. So with this idea, I can use the sponges instead, and use less softener.


  2. Did it seem as if there was a strange film on your clothes? I tried a homemade detergent and my clothes felt strange, and never clean!


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.