Laundry Detergent

In 2010 a woman came into my life that had a profound impact on me.  She was younger than me, and at the time had two adorable little girls.  We spent many afternoons that summer at her apartment pool.  Her family introduced us to Aldi, as her husband was the manage.  Sweet memories.

Those are not the memories that stand out the most though!  Kimberlie inspired me to ask questions.  She showed me how to dig into things and find out what was going on behind the scenes.  Specifically she told me about a website that you can look up your person care items (face cream, body wash, etc) to see how toxic it was.  WHAT?

Stop the presses!  Toxic body care products?  Ugh!

My youngest son was about 6 during this season, and he had what we called allergry induced asthma.  Not sever.  He did not have frequent issues, but enough to realize something was not right.  When I started doing some research I realized that he might be reacting to some of the things in our house; that we were bringing in toxins that were impacting him.  (soaps, candles, etc.)

So I looked up body wash, laundry detergent, and more.  That was when I started a no-poo approach to my hair.  We switched to Dr. Bronner for our body wash and even for hair for the kids.  I stopped using lots of products and replaced many with Coconut Oil! (LOL)

Fast forward to 2018, I am still no-poo.  We primarily use goat milk soap now.  Soap that I make, with ingredients that are safe.  As far as household cleaners, we use Theives cleaner and several shaklee products.  Rarely do we bring in traditional cleaners.

Most of all though, we stopped using normal detergents, for a couple of reasons.  The smell in our laundry lasted forever, but I realized that it should not.  Detergents contain phthalates, to extend the scent, and these are not good for our health.  Not to mention the price to wash laundry for 6 people!!

So I make my own.  I have done this for many years, not sure how many.  We have used a thick paste like product, until our new washer did not fully dissolve it.  Now we use a powder that I mix up in a bucket about every 2.5 months.  This recipe leaves no scent (a good thing to our family) and it seems to clean things just fine.  My boys work at the feed store and come home stinky and dirty and their clothes come out clean.

Something I read about house hold detergents :

Laundry detergents. These products contain enzymes (as noted by the names “cationic,” “anionic” or “non-ionic” on the label) to loosen stains and ground-in dirt. Cationic detergents are the most toxic when taken internally. Ingestion can result in nausea, vomiting, shock, convulsions and coma. “Non-ionic” detergents are less toxic but can irritate skin and eyes or make you more sensitive to other chemicals. Asthma can develop if a person is exposed to large quantities of detergent. Detergents are also responsible for many household poisonings from accidental swallowing.

So just another reason we do what we do.  Since 2010 I have taken baby step after baby step to clean our environment, clean our bathrooms and laundry room – eliminating toxins everywhere.

So the recipe I use is the following :

1~ 4lb 12 oz box of Borax
1~ 4 lb box of Arm And Hammer Baking Soda
1~ 3 lb 7 oz box of Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda
3 bars Fels Naptha Soap, grated
If I have ugly goat milk soap, or ends or pieces I will grate those up and add them to our laundry.  I am intentional about not using soap with any coloring, since I do not want to introduce that into our wash water.  But otherwise I use scraps to add to the cleaning power.
Mix all the ingredients in bucket (we have buckets coming out of ears thanks to the soap business).  If you cannot find a bucket to use, you can use a trash bag and then twist the top and mix up the ingredients in your bag.
Try not to breath in over this mixture as borax may or may not be great for your lungs.  I just turn my head when mixing up.
This mixture smells clean, and many people add downey scent things – I avoid all that stuff because it is all toxic – none of it is good for you.  If you want scent added to your clothes, use wool dryer balls (fabric softener sheets are another soap box of mine- lol) and you can add essential oils to the dryer balls – this will give your clothes a soft scent.
I have a large jar that I put the soap in and I use about a tablespoon per load.  This lasts our family about 2-2.5 months depending on how much laundry we go through – or depending on if my kids throw their clean clothes on the floor only to wash again without wearing! (ugh)
I wold encourage you to think different about scents – and realize that those scents can be very dangerous and are not what they seem to be!
Make sure anything you use that is scented has not Phthalates, especially.

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