creative simplicity

Homemade Laundry Detergent

This blog is full of ramblings on the glory of grace, and peppered with “Style Tuesday” posts all about embracing the everyday happiness of play. I’d like to introduce on more kind of post that will be far less frequent but still exciting: Creative Simplicity.

Can I just mention how totally, ridiculously bad I am at making anything homemade?

Seriously, I’m more Hermionie than Martha Stewart. I don’t like cooking, or baking, or most things that require hands-on work. Usually, I’d rather be reading or chatting with a friend than fumbling my way through a recipe. That being said, I’ve been feeling such an urge to explore creative simplicity at home. As Caleb and I are on a pretty tight budget, I’ve become hyper-aware of how much cash we waste on stuff that we could probably make ourselves. Another big part of this new endeavor is my wariness of hormone-disrupting properties in so many synthetic store bought items. Put those two factors together, and a desire to find creative simplicity is born.

Creative Simplicity is about using new ideas and a little bit of elbow grease to save money and take control of the healthiness of products we surround ourselves with.

This do-it-yourself take on home items and pantry stockers is so entirely out of my comfort zone. That being said, when is a better time to share a new learning curve than when I’m just figuring it out myself? Learning together is so much more fun than stumbling through it alone. I’ll be sharing things I’ve tried and liked. Everything posted under Creative Simplicity will be focused on using the most simple and natural products possible to save money long-term. They’ll also be focused on simple methods that won’t take 10 hours to complete or a ton of skill, because I have neither of those things. Today’s post is so easy that it’s almost hard to believe! That being said, here’s how I made…

Homemade (and Healthy!) Laundry Detergent

This recipe is so easy that I can’t believe I ever bought the store-bought stuff. I browsed several Pinterest recipes, and this is a mash-up of a few that I liked. The big question of course is does it actually work? I’m going to be 100% totally honest with you…. yes! I’m assuming it won’t be great on really tough stains (that’ll probably need some pre-treating), but it removed all of the smell and general grossness from Caleb’s cornbread-smelling restaurant work clothes. Let me tell you, that is no small feat.

What You’ll Need for 1.5 Gallons :

  • 1/4 cup baking soda (you can find it for 59 cents at the dollar store!)
  • 1/4 cup super washing soda
  • 1/4 cup Dr. Bronner’s castile soap (I prefer unscented due to sensitive skin)
  • large glass jar
  • large bucket (optional, but ideal)
  • essential oil (optional)
The cheapest and easiest place to find these things is Amazon.
I got this bucket at the Home Depot. Optional, but helps as you’ll have no worries of breaking the glass with hot water!


  1. Dump the washing soda and baking soda in the bucket (you could probably use your jar, but I think it’s easier this way)
  2. Fill with just enough hot water from a not full boiled tea kettle to dissolve the powder and mix. You can also use hot tap water.
  3. Fill the jar almost entirely with warm tap water, leaving enough room for the castile soap.
  4. Pour in the castile soap last and mix. If you skip step 3, you’ll have a sudsy mess!
  5. Optional: Pour in 20-30 drops of the essential oil of your choice. I used lavender, and it smells great!
  6. Enjoy your frugal, healthy detergent. Use 1/3 cup per load, and run the machine like you normally do. Keep a spoon by the jar to give it a quick mix before each use!

Lots of people online like to use beverage dispensers instead of an actual jar, which I’m sure makes it easier to quickly dispense. Honestly, I considered buying one, but those plastic nozzles on dispensers are usually total junk. I wasn’t willing to risk 1.5 gallons of detergent spilling on the floor! I bought this jar at TJMaxx for five dollars and it’s just as easy.

After it’s all mixed!
Easy storage for the next batch.
Healthy, cheap, easy, and ready to use!

Did you try it, or do you have another version that works for you? What are little things you do to make your house full of creative simplicity?

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” Colossians 3:23

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