Many times when I have tried to save money by making something home-made, it hasn’t turned out real well. One thing that I have had great success with is home made laundry detergent. It is easy to make, works very well, is fragrance-free (by my choice) and is much cheaper than buying a comparable brand of laundry detergent. I figure I can do a load for around 3 cents, compared to warehouse-club detergent that costs 15-20 cents a load. Since we have a family and lots of laundry to wash, the savings really add up.
The recipe I use was created by Trent at The Simple Dollar. I use his exact recipe, but instead of using soap I have laying around, I use Kirk’s Original Coco CASTILE Bar Soap, which is a natural coconut-based soap. The great thing is that YOU can use whatever kind of soap you want!
For me, being able to use a fragrance free formula that is more “natural” than the off-the-shelf detergents is as important to me as the up-front cost savings. You can make the decision to add fragrance or not, but fragrance free can end up saving you money by saving trips to the doctor – fragrances are often skin irritants and fragrance-containing products can pollute the air indoors and increase your risk of cancer.
This detergent works great for washing cloth diapers also!
Let me know how your experiences work out!