Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Laundry Soap Question

A reader asked:

"Myah - can you clarify your gel soap recipe? In the directions, you give various measurements for water. Are those the amounts for a single recipe, or the amounts you add when you've already doubled the other ingredients? I'm going to try some - but don't need to do a double recipe when it's just me.  Thanks." 

So, this one's for you, Girl!  :)  I always double the recipe, but you don't have to!  Just follow the recipe below for a single batch.  Hope it helps.  Let me know!

This recipe is for a single batch - in a 2 gallon bucket.

Liquid (gel) Laundry Detergent
1/4 bar Fels Naptha soap
1/2 bar Ivory soap
2/3 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
1/2 cup 20 Mule Team Borax
A 2 gallon bucket with a lid.

Very finely chop the soap and put it into a large pan over medium-high heat. Add 6 cups of water and, stirring often, heat until the soap melts. Stir in washing soda and borax. Pour 4 cups of hot water into the bucket. Carefully add the hot soap mixture and stir. Fill the bucket with water (about 22 cups more). Let the soap sit overnight to allow it to gel. Stir well. Keep in mind that the consistency of this detergent is different from what you buy at the store – it is a liquidy gel.

Use 1/2-3/4 cup per load (I use the top of an old detergent bottle). Remember that this is a low-sudsing formula, so don’t expect to see a lot of bubbles.


  1. ok - my detailed nature may make you crazy - but what size bar of Ivory?? Fels Naptha only comes in one size - but Ivory has regular (3oz) and large (5oz). Thanks!! ;o)

  2. Joan, :)
    The ivory soap is 4.5 oz and Fels-Naptha is 5 oz.
    I am very detail natured, so I GET IT! :)

  3. I went ahead and made it before I saw your reply. I made a single recipe of the gel using one whole 3 oz bar of Ivory, and 30 cups total of water (recipe actually calls for 32 cups total - I mixed everything in my soup pot and then poured it into old laundry soap jugs because I didn't have a bucket with a lid, and 30 cups is all the extra water it would hold). I'll let you know how it turns out.

    I made a single recipe of the gel and a double recipe of the powder. One bar of Fels Naptha was enough to make it all.

    Interesting side note - the stainless steel pot I used had some dark stains in the bottom from something I had cooked. After I cleaned out the pot from making soap, the stains were gone and the pot is all shiny again. Hope it works as well on clothes.

  4. That is great, Joan!!!
    Linda Barnes


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