After learning how to bake bread, making who knows how many cakes and trying to grow your own tomatoes, you may be looking for your next DYI challenge. Just in time, we wanted to try making our own laundry for a change and because our sheets
deserve it. Follow the guide.
Homemade laundry: why?
It may seem obvious, but commercial detergents are not very eco-friendly. In Europe, almost 3 million tons of laundry detergents are produced every year. And most of these products contain non-biodegradable ingredients. The result? Agents that can be toxic (such as certain bleaching agents or other solvents) and that are deposited in the soil or surface water. And that's not even mentioning the plastic cans. In short, you get the picture.
In addition, washing powder tends to be very expensive, especially when you want to wash your sheets every week and you prefer organic washing powder. And when you know that homemade laundry only requires 3 or 4 ingredients maximum, why deprive yourself?
It looks like the South
You can find dozens of recipes on the Internet, but we chose the one from Julie, from the blog Banana Pancakes, which has become the reference in the field. To start, choose a REAL Marseille soap. In chips or in blocks, what counts is the composition: no added glycerin (very important to avoid a too solid laundry) and with 72% of vegetable oil minimum. The other miracle ingredient of homemade laundry is a DIY basic: baking soda. Yes, you can find it everywhere, but its anti-scaling and softening properties make it the ideal laundry ally. All you need to do is dig up some crystals and you're good to go.
- 1 litre of water
- 50 grams of Marseille soap (adjust according to your preferences)
- 2 tablespoons of baking soda
- 2 tablespoons of soda crystals
Heat the water in a large saucepan. When it is hot, add your chips and melt them over low heat, stirring often (this should take five minutes). When the mixture is warm, add the rest of the ingredients and stir until the lumps disappear.
Let it cool completely and pour it into your canister. Don't forget to shake the lye. That's it!
Our little tips:
If you can, use a funnel: you can do without one, but it's a bit more complicated. Don't worry if the texture is a bit thick: you can shake your can before each use or even use a hand blender at the end of the cooking process.
We often forget that a washing machine can quickly get dirty because of the detergent (homemade or not). We advise you to run the empty program once a month with white vinegar at 90° (about 500 ml in the drum).
You can store your washing powder in old plastic cans, but we like the idea of using large glass bottles - feel free to personalise the labels or ask your children to do so... before hiding the bottles out of their reach.
A little sweetness...
Another miracle product: white vinegar, even if it doesn't mix well with our laundry recipe. Instead, mix 1/3 vinegar and 2/3 water, and add your homemade fabric softener to the tub. You can also add a few drops of essential oil to your laundry, but to be honest, the smell is pretty subtle in the end and we prefer to stick to the original recipe. Your sheets will smell deliciously like soap when they come out of the machine and will smell... clean, once dry.
And if you miss the smell of laundry too much, trust the good old recipes of grandmothers and add bags of dried flowers to your cupboards. Marseille soap + lavender sachet = a bit of Provence in your room!