Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Home made laundry liquid

Over the course of reading blogs from like-minded souls looking to lead a simpler, more frugal life, I have come across many recipes for home-made laundry powders and liquid. Initially, I wasn't sure, partly because I was so used to buying products advertised as having stain removal/freshening 'expertise'. I had even always bought branded products over own brand, believing them to be better.
However, all the reviews I have read about the effectiveness of these home made products has persuaded me to give it a go. I have based this on the recipes from 'Down to Earth' and 'Frugal in Norfolk'.

I ordered the supplies from Amazon. I bought borax substitute, washing soda, soap, white vinegar, essential oils (tea tree and mandarin) and bicarbonate of soda. With this combination of ingredients, I can make laundry liquid, natural spray cleaners, hand wash, cream cleaner, window cleaner, drain unblocker and laundry powder, so I'm all set up for quite some time! The total cost, including delivery? £25.
To make my Laundry liquid, I grated half a bar of soap and melted it with 1 litre of cold water in a large pan over a gentle heat. Once the soap was completely dissolved, I took it off the heat and whisked in 1/2 cup of washing soda crystals until totally dissolved. I then slowly added another 3 litres of cold water, whisking all the time. Once cold, I decanted my Laundry liquid with the help of a funnel into two 4 pint milk cartons (well rinsed out of course!!). Before decanting, I had added about 15/20 drops of the mandarin essential oil into the empty milk carton. I have left a decent gap at the top to allow for shaking, as apparently the contents will often separate.

I have done some basic calculations and each wash will cost me just over 1p if I use about half a cup of liquid per wash. This compares to 20p per wash for an own brand washing powder and 35p for a branded product per wash. If this laundry liquid works it could save me approximately £141 per year, based on an average of 8 washes per week. I think that's worth about 15 minutes of preparation time every now and again.
I'll let you know if it stands up to the test over a period of time.

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