Easy Home Made Laundry Liquid

⚫️ In 2019, it was estimated that 49% of all liquid laundry detergents, and about 77% of powdered laundry detergents, contained micro-plastics. Synthetic polymers.

Nasty stuff.

⚫️  700 million plastic laundry detergent jugs are thrown away each year in the United States.

⚫️ Synthetic clothing sheds micro-plastics as they are washed and the microplastics are flushed out with the water.

Eventually they find their way into the waterways and out to sea.

▪ The micro plastics, beads and fibres bind together and float.
▪ They float in suffocating clouds just below the ocean surface.
▪ They wreak unimaginable havoc on our sea life.

30% of the plastic jugs are recycled. And we all know how I feel about recycling. Millions and millions of these big plastic jugs are piling up in the landfill.

And big box stores are full of synthetic clothing.

It’s a triple whammy of plastic pollution.

And you and I CAN END our contribution to this particular pollution in our own Sustainable Home laundry.

🦋 Living lightly is our goal.

collection of soap in cotton fabric

Make your Own Laundry Liquid.

You can make your own laundry liquid in 5 minutes a week.

All you need is a bar of Castile soap.

1. No microplastics
2. No big plastic disposable jug
3. No bleaches

Here is the easiest HOME MADE laundry detergent in the world.

Grate Soap into flakes.

I use Castile soap. Or off cuts from home made soap (ask the soap seller at your farmers market).

Save all the soap slivers from the shower and bath – give them a wash (I know what you are thinking) and throw those in too. (The nuns taught me this – they had little buckets in every shower room to collect old soap that they turned into THIS liquid laundry soap).

1 cup grated soap in stainless steel measuring cup on wooden surface. Grated soap ready to be made into home made laundry liquid

Whisk grated soap and hot water.

🍊 1 cup of grated Castile Soap
🍊 5 cups boiling hot water
🍊 Whisk until dissolved.

If you like to wash in cold water add more water to the soap flakes to make a more diluted liquid.

Add a few drops of essential oil.

Once the mixture is cooled add a few drops of your favourite essential oil.

I use lavender or orange. Usually none at all. I love the scent of soap:

Liquid laundry soap in a stainless steel milk can, with whisk and lid and label on wooden surface.


In a bowl or small bucket with a lid.

I use an old milking can – this mix will be a little gelatinous so I like to ladle it into the machine.

Wash your stuff

Use 1/4 cup of liquid per wash. (A little more if Tima has been rubbing her nose on your trousers).

Choose a warm cycle. Hot for whites and very hot for sheets (don’t make me talk about mattresses).

Do not overfill your washing machine (John).

Remember that synthetic fabrics shed micro plastics during the washing cycle so wash these on a gentle cycle. Or hand wash. We have discovered that washing synthetics is the main contributor of micro plastics to the oceans.

Hand wash orchoose a gentle cycle for fabrics such as: polyester, acrylic, nylon, rayon, spandex, latex., etc. This does decrease the shedding. Because:

▪ The micro plastics, beads and fibres bind together and float.
▪ They float in suffocating clouds just below the ocean surface.
▪ They wreak unimaginable havoc on our sea life.

Clean your machine monthly

🍊 Run an empty hot wash with a cup of cleaning vinegar.

Pause the cycle so the vinegar has a chance to soften any soap residue.


Then while the drum is still warm spray with your natural cleaning vinegar spray, the one with the orange essential oil, and wipe out the drum of the washing machine, especially around the top.


Now this is going to sound crazy.

The nuns (I worked in a laundry when I was a wayward girl remember), the nuns used sunlight to whiten their fabrics. So if a rag was stained ( after we had hand washed it as clean as possible) we were told to lay the wet fabric on the grass by the clothesline and turn it every few hours.

Hang your whites out in the sun. The sun and breeze will kill off any smelly bacteria and whiten the fabrics. Especially if they are natural fabrics. (Solar drying is the thing)

Do you think hand washing is a forgotten art? I love to hand-wash my jerseys. It is a gentle calm job.

Have a gorgeous day.


PS Make sure to have a few bars of soap and a little knife in your Go-bag. That way you can wash your hands AND your clothes anytime.

28 Comments on “Easy Home Made Laundry Liquid

  1. Saving this one; thank you for the great tips! I recently got Castile Soap for handwashing and other projects ~ Multi-use!

  2. I actually wash cashmere sweaters and silk long underwear in the bathtub when I wash my hair. I use a solid shampoo from Ethique that comes in a cardboard box. I run the bath water, put the sweaters or long underwear tops in the tub. Then I get in, get my head thoroughly wet and rub the shampoo bar on my scalp. I rinse with a pitcher that I also use to clean my hair brush and comb. The shampoo runoff from my hair contains enough soap to clean my clothes, which get to soak in the mildly soapy water while I clean my hair. When I get out of the tub I press the water out of my clothes, rinse them in a stoppered sink, roll them in towels to dry. I hang long underwear and block sweaters flat to dry. I love accomplishing all of that in one bath. Then I leave the water in the tub and bail it with a bucket to flush the toilet or water plants. That’s four uses for one bathtub of water and handwashing is not a separate chore, but a part of my bathing routine.

    • You are the master at multi use – especially with water. I learn so much from you! I don’t have a bath but I do fill buckets of water as the shower warms up. Mostly the buckets are used for watering the plants or handwashing!

      Great to hear from you – how is your day going?

      • It’s going okay — I have clean hair and plenty of water. My 93-year-old mother was an early ecologist and the years of California drought taught me to be careful.

  3. Question about Castile soap- 1/2 the articles I read love it, the other half caution about its use and oily buildup in drains and pipes. I live in a 60+ year old apartment with pipes that are already a mess and have no recourse to change them as you know. Thoughts and opinions please!

    • If you are using an oil that goes solid when it cools then I would be careful. That would be coconut oil. I can’t think of any others off hand. Dr Bronners uses hemp oil as its base.

      I also have old plumbing and have not had an issue with the soap though I use all kinds of soaps including ones made with lard.

      I think, like the washing machine ,it might be a good idea to throw some vinegar down your pipes once a month anyway. Whether you use oily soaps or not!

      Maybe try to chat up the local soap makers and see if they will sell you their off cuts?

      Really good question though Deb.

      • Thanks C! I don’t use anything with coconut oil and already do the vinegar thing so maybe I’m okay not to fuss about a non-issue. I suspect my worries are minor compared to what I know others put down their drains :0

  4. Just found this quote, I thouht you might like it!

    If we all used clotheslines, we could save 30 million tons of coal a year, or shut down 15 nuclear power plants. And you don’t have to wait to start. Yours could be up by this afternoon. To be specific, buy 50 feet of clothesline and a $3 bag of clothespins and become a solar energy pioneer.
    Bill McKibben

  5. I can remember seeing something about plastic on Blue Peter when I was a child (late 1960s) – they mentioned that plastic lasts for ever …and even back then, I felt there was something wrong with that!

  6. I use Knight’s Castile soap for washing me! So now l will use it as a laundry soap too! Thank you very much!

  7. So pleased you recreated this post. I’ve been buying locally made eco-friendly laundry no microplastic powder in huge (very useful) tubs but I’d love to try making my own… I love Castile soap… I use it for bubble bath! I appreciate the additional tips about washing machine maintenance when using it. We have very soft (rain) water, very old plumbing and our washing water goes onto the garden via a hose and sprinkler head.

  8. We use grated soap ends to make ‘sand soap’ for cleaning off very dirty hands. The Husband regularly comes home with black grease embedded in his paws due to the nature of his work. Sand soap will get that off. You add very fine washed river or silica sand to melted grated soap ends (no extra water), and pour it into bar moulds. Also, I have a dryer for the monsoon season when sunshine is not available due to endless rainfall and the humidity is too high to air dry stuff, but then I do also generate our own electricity year round with 20 solar panels, so I don’t feel bad about it. Everything is air dried the rest of the time. Sheets in the sun for bleaching, and the rest in the shade to preserve the colour; tropical sun can fade garments after only 2 hours.

  9. I mix 1 cup washing soda and 1/2 cup baking soda, use 1/4 cup per load and add a couple of squirts of unscented liquid castile soap and I put white vinegar in the dispenser meant for fabric softener.

      • I have read that if you put the vinegar in with the detergent they cancel each other out so I only put it in the dispenser

  10. I grew up making laundry soap just this way — in the 1950s. What goes around, comes around. However: one of my biggest pet peeves are the eco-warriors who are constantly campaigning for solar and wind power, and then allow their HOAs to pass rules forbidding hanging laundry on a line. You will never see clothes hanging outdoors in the greater Houston area, including the suburbs: it’s the sort of thing that will get you fined by your HOA, or kicked out of your apartment.

    • Isn’t that just stupid!? I totally agree. Those HOA rules never cease to amaze me. I just could not live under that kind of regime. Being forced to use electricity.

      • The arguments against clotheslines usually appeal to “aesthetics.” Personally, I don’t find much more attractive than fresh, wind-blown towels and sheets from the line!

        • Yes! I love to watch the clothes drying on the line. Those people are just silly. No one dries their clothes out the front of their house. We always dry them out the back.

    • Yes. I was not going to go there yet. Because scaring people is not my intention. Providing doable solutions is what we are about. However you are right. And we must all do all we can to mitigate our complicity.

      Many water treatment facilities are creating filters to capture micro plastics but then what? Where do they store these tiny particles so they are not released again. Micro plastics need to be stopped at the source.

      Thank you for the addition Misky. We need to all be aware of this awful threat. And we need to be alarmed.

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