Frugal living


Written on Tuesday, May 06, 2008 by Jessica

Back in the day when we were "poor" (I was a student and Bob was the only wage earner), I used to make my own laundry detergentt. It's a lot cheaper.

Given the current economic conditions, I've decided to start doing that again. If anyone else is interested in this, here are some tips:

  1. One of the ingredients, Fels Naptha laundry bar soap, can be hard to find locally. (It pretty much depends on where you live.) Fortunately, they're easy to find online and small, so cheap to ship. Just Google it.
  2. Another one of the ingredients, washing soda, can also be hard to find. Arm & Hammer makes it, and so does Church & Dwight. (Actually, I think they're both part of the same company.) I ordered some just today directly from Church & Dwight because it is not sold around here for miles and miles. I received free shipping b/c I'm a new customer, which is cool b/c they charge $5.99 to ship a 3.5 lb box. (The box itself costs $3.99.) HOWEVER, washing soda is just sodium carbonate, which is easily purchased at home stores (Home Depot, Lowe's, etc.) in the pool section.
  3. Borax is readily available at supermarkets in the laundry aisle.
Be forewarned. This homemade stuff looks really gross. :)

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  1. Teriana |

    I like my way better.

    Step 1: place dirty clothes in Wal-Mart bags.

    Step 2: wash dirty clothes at Mom and Dad's house using their laundry detergent.

    Step 3: repeat in two weeks.

  2. Anonymous |


    Why would you want to make your own soap. Detergent is not that expensive, I think.

    T-, thats the method my brother uses,at my house!!


  3. Jessica |

    Teriana, I'd adopt your way, too, if I wouldn't spend more in gas just getting there. :)

    Z, I want to make my own laundry soap b/c I'm pinching pennies. A gallon of cheap liquid detergent like Xtra is about $4. My homemade stuff is only 50 cents a gallon -- less than 2 cents a load! -- and I don't have to worry about added fragrance, which just makes me break out in a rash anyhow.

  4. Sherri Sanders |

    I'm going to stick with laundry soap. That sounds like entirely too much work.

  5. Jessica |

    It's not so bad. It's a fun project with Seth b/c it's like cooking, and he loves to cook.

  6. Frank |

    Sounds like too much work for me.


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