Thursday, July 3, 2008

Airing my "dirty laundry"

For those of you hoping for a tell all...shame on you! Don't you know gossip is a sin? We won't get into that right now though. That is a whole other post :)

No, today I want to talk about laundry detergent. Some people grow up and use the same thing their mama used. Others hated what their mama used so they use something completely different. Some people buy laundry detergent based on the look of the product, the smell of the product or the price.

While all that is wonderful the bottom line is this: Soap is soap. Plain and simple. Soap cleans dirty things.

So, after this revelation I began to wonder what was so cool about the 2X, super-duper cleaning power of the commercial products on the shelves. You know what is so cool about it? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Now that's not to say it doesn't look very pretty on the shelf, beckoning you with it's heavenly scent, smaller bottle and catchy advertising, but have you ever really sat down and done the math?

No? Well, now is the time. So, go get that bottle of detergent, take out a piece of paper and a pen and figure it out. All I did was take the price of the bottle and divide it by the number of loads the bottle "says" you can do with it. The reason for the "says" is you know you never put in the amount they suggest. You do a bit more...just to get the clothes cleaner, right? They know this too.

Stay with me because I'm getting to my point.

So, I did this one day and realized that I was paying more than I wanted to per load of laundry. You also have to figure that you use fabric softener, so don't forget that. Well, that was more for me.

I found a recipe for making my own laundry detergent and went right to work. It's so simple it's silly!

This is the "recipe":

1 bar of soap, grated (I used a sharp knife and cut off slivers)
1/2 cup borax, optional (the first time I didn't use this)
1 gallon water

Combine the above ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Then turn heat down and simmer for 15 minutes or until the soap slivers have dissolved. Then turn off the heat and let cool on the stove for a little while. Pour into a large container (not a pour container). It will cool down completely and turn into a gel like substance. When doing laundry use 1/2 cup at at time.

How easy is that? The best part is it can be as expensive as you want or as cheap as you want. It all depends on the bar of soap you use. I can usually get 32+ loads out of this one batch, and you know how much it cost me per load? About 1-2 cents! Yes, you read or two penny's per load of laundry!!! I'll let you in on a secret too....

I don't use fabric softener because I don't need it anymore since I started making my own detergent.

So, I save even more money. My clothes are just as clean. I can choose my scent of detergent depending on my mood the day I make it. I'm saving money! I don't have all the chemicals in my clothes that the put in regular detergent. I'm not drawn in by the small, pretty bottles on the shelves.

Oh, and can I just say something about the new, smaller bottles? What did they do to make it 2x more powerful? They must have added more chemicals. I don't want that on my skin. No wonder people have reactions to laundry detergent.

All of this to say...

With the price of everything getting higher and higher we do have a choice as to what we pay. We just have to figure out if we're willing to put in a few extra minutes to prepare these things for our family. It's kind of like making dinner vs. buying pre-made stuff. You know it's healthier to make it from scratch. Same thing with everything else. You can choose what you want to put into the things you make. Laundry detergent included.

Now go have fun and make some laundry detergent. You'll feel so much better when you do. I did!


Apple said...

That is absolutely awesome! And with Z have skin sensitivity issues, this is a fantastic solution. You're so smart. *wink*

On another note, I really do *wink* a lot in real life too. I'm really quick and some people start stuttering afterwards because it catches them off guard. It's kinda funny. (Random!)

Mrs. B. said...

Love it! :)