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Old 01-13-2013, 01:48 PM   #1
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I'm interested in switching to a more natural laundry detergent because my LO has been having rash issues. Biokleen and ecover have been suggested to me, but we really can't afford them. I was considering Country Save, but I have a top loader so it doesn't seem like much of a savings either. Plus I'd have to order it online and I don't always have enough money to spend to get free shipping. Does anyone make their own laundry detergent and use it successfully on their cloth diapers? I use mostly wool covers with flats, fitteds & prefolds. I did just get a nikky cover off FSOT though and I was told by the seller to wash it in ecover so we haven't been able to use it yet. I've done a little research and the powdered versions are more appealing to me because we live in a mobile home and were short on space, but will they dissolve in the wash? I guess I could just make a much smaller batch of the liquid. Also what about my little ones sensitive skin? Is the feldspar napa and borax going to be too harsh for her? Should i use Ivory soap instead? I saw another recipe that uses oxygen bleach, washing soda and baking soda that a women uses on her diapers mixed in equal parts 2 tablespoons at a time.

Will homemade detergent wear out our clothes faster? The adults clothes are already pretty worn out. The kids luckily have some newer things and I don't want to ruin them. DH likes his clothes to smell nice so I'm going to have to add some essential oils to a separate container we use on our clothes.

Sorry for all the questions. Thanks for your help.

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Old 01-13-2013, 02:36 PM   #2
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I just did a whole thread on HM laundry soap. I like Ivory over fels..

Search my threds as I'm on my phone and can't cut and paste. Maybe someone will do it for me.

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Old 01-13-2013, 03:14 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by thirdtimemomma
I just did a whole thread on HM laundry soap. I like Ivory over fels..

Search my threds as I'm on my phone and can't cut and paste. Maybe someone will do it for me.

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Thanks for the heads up I just checked it out and it answered a lot of questions. What's the soap free detergent recipe you use on dipes though?
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:22 PM   #4
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It's 2 boxes Borax and washing soda with 2 box of Oxiclean (the big one 86 ounce I believe).. only I didnt have enough room for two boxes Borax, I used one and it works great. 2 tbs in the drum, per load.

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Old 01-13-2013, 05:36 PM   #5
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I'm mobile so I am not sure how to search.are there any good hm liquid recipes? I'm not a fan of powder.
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by thirdtimemomma
It's 2 boxes Borax and washing soda with 2 box of Oxiclean (the big one 86 ounce I believe).. only I didnt have enough room for two boxes Borax, I used one and it works great. 2 tbs in the drum, per load.

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Wow that makes a lot. Is it about equal parts of each borax, washing soda & oxi clean? I want to make a small batch first to try out. I looked at my local grocery store tonight for ingredients but their prices were high so I'm going to try another store in town tomorrow. I need to go to Walmart anyway for a humidifier for the baby so I'll probably try to get the stuff there. Thanks.
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Old 01-13-2013, 07:41 PM   #7
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Re: Homemade laundry detergent

I never had luck with the "soap-free" detergent for dipes, it always left them stinky, and we use prefolds and flats with wool or Thirsties covers. What does work for us, and what we have been using for about 4 years now with zero issues is the liquid recipe as follows:

1 bar grated castille soap (Kirk's or homemade)
1 cup borax
1 cup washing soda
5 gallons of water

Grate the soap, melt it in a pot of hot water on the stove, dump it in a 5 gallon bucket, add more hot water to the pot, pour in the borax and washing soda, stir until dissolved, dump into the 5 gallon bucket with the melted soap, and fill the bucket up with cold water. The liquid will form some clumps overnight, just fill your jugs and shake to dissolve. No fading issues, no diaper stink, no diaper build-up. Awesome, simple, cheap, and fine for even my super sensitive skin. If I have a pesky stain, then I wet it and rub it with a bar of fels naptha, then wash as usual - but I would never use fels as the soap in the recipe!

ETA: I hand wash our wool, using Eucalan, never put it in the washer.

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Old 01-13-2013, 08:02 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Green Decals
I never had luck with the "soap-free" detergent for dipes, it always left them stinky, and we use prefolds and flats with wool or Thirsties covers. What does work for us, and what we have been using for about 4 years now with zero issues is the liquid recipe as follows:

1 bar grated castille soap (Kirk's or homemade)
1 cup borax
1 cup washing soda
5 gallons of water

Grate the soap, melt it in a pot of hot water on the stove, dump it in a 5 gallon bucket, add more hot water to the pot, pour in the borax and washing soda, stir until dissolved, dump into the 5 gallon bucket with the melted soap, and fill the bucket up with cold water. The liquid will form some clumps overnight, just fill your jugs and shake to dissolve. No fading issues, no diaper stink, no diaper build-up. Awesome, simple, cheap, and fine for even my super sensitive skin. If I have a pesky stain, then I wet it and rub it with a bar of fels naptha, then wash as usual - but I would never use fels as the soap in the recipe!

ETA: I hand wash our wool, using Eucalan, never put it in the washer.
This recipe sounds easy enough. I could "borrow" one of DH's work buckets. I've been having trouble locating Castile soap though. What section of the store will it be in? A lot of websites are saying not to use soap on dipes because you'll have to strip them, but I want/need our diapers to be clean. Do you use this soap on all of your laundry? Thank you.

Oh and yes I hand wash my wool also. We just started using wool and I'm having trouble with lanolizing but that's a whole other issue. Thanks for your help.

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Old 01-14-2013, 08:02 AM   #9
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Re: Homemade laundry detergent

i used my hm on everything for awhile but i noticed the cloths where wearing much faster! my prefolds look aged. my normal cloths have some holes. i now only use it every now and then and with towels and bedding. my son has mild sensitivities and we just use all free and clear :/ not the most money saving approch but with coupons and buying in bulk for target gift cards it comes out at a fair price. i also only use 1 1/2 line for cloth and the 1 line for everything else.

you may have better results using the liquid as i only used the powder cuz i was lazy... i tried to dissolve the powder in warm water first and the soap flakes never budged nor did some of the white powder. i have normal city water. good luck!
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Old 01-14-2013, 08:28 AM   #10
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Re: Homemade laundry detergent

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Originally Posted by MandaMommy2 View Post
This recipe sounds easy enough. I could "borrow" one of DH's work buckets. I've been having trouble locating Castile soap though. What section of the store will it be in? A lot of websites are saying not to use soap on dipes because you'll have to strip them, but I want/need our diapers to be clean. Do you use this soap on all of your laundry? Thank you.

Oh and yes I hand wash my wool also. We just started using wool and I'm having trouble with lanolizing but that's a whole other issue. Thanks for your help.
Castille soap is in the regular bar soap aisle. Kirk's is like $1.20 a bar at our Hannaford (check Market Basket if you have one in your area, I think they might be the same chain?) or you can use Dr. Bronners but they are super pricey. Just get the purest soap you can find. I think the major issue with soap and diapers is with pockets, because the build-up prevents the moisture from getting through to the soaker. We have used Kawaii pockets with no problem, but I only had 4, the rest of our stash was all prefolds and flats. FWIW we don't have any issue with our bath towels, kitchen towels, or family cloth absorbing, either, so obviously there are no build up issues. I think we would see them after 4 years of exclusive homemade laundry soap use, KWIM? We use the same stuff on all of our laundry. I had tried the borax/washing soda/oxy clean for diapers but they cam out stinky and not clean-looking, even with multiple rinses. Not only does the laundry soap actually clean them, but I also wash on cold with no pre-rinse (except with the diaper sprayer for solid-food poops before the diaper goes in the pail).
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