The Best Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipes | How They Work

Are you tired of shelling out money for commercial laundry detergents? Look no further! Making your own laundry detergent at home is not only cost-effective, but it also allows you to have control over the ingredients used. 

In this blog, we’ll share some of the best homemade laundry detergent recipes that are easy to make and highly effective. From using natural ingredients like baking soda and vinegar to laundry soap bars, we’ll break down how each recipe works to leave your clothes smelling fresh and clean. Say goodbye to harsh chemicals and hello to a greener, more sustainable laundry routine.

DIY Recipes For Best Homemade Laundry Detergents

Here are 10 different homemade laundry detergents:

  1. Baby-Safe Laundry Detergent: Liquid castile soap, baking soda, washing soda, roman chamomile oil and lavender essential oils.
  1. Lemon and Lavender Laundry Detergent: Castile soap, baking soda, washing soda, lemon essential oil, lavender essential oil.
  1. Citrus Burst Laundry Detergent: Borax, baking soda, lemon or orange essential oil, white vinegar.
  1. Herbal Fresh Laundry Detergent: Liquid castile soap, baking soda, washing soda, rosemary, lavender, and lemon essential oils.
  1. Eucalyptus and Mint Laundry Detergent: Liquid castile soap, baking soda, washing soda, eucalyptus and peppermint essential oils.
  1. Floral Fresh Laundry Detergent: Borax, washing soda, liquid castile soap, lavender, jasmine, and ylang-ylang essential oils.
  1. Ocean Breeze Laundry Detergent: Liquid castile soap, baking soda, washing soda, blue food coloring, lemon and sea salt essential oils.
  1. Summer Citrus Laundry Detergent: Baking soda, washing soda, liquid castile soap, lemon and grapefruit essential oils.
  1. Anti-Bacterial Laundry Detergent: Liquid castile soap, washing soda, tea tree and lavender essential oils.
  1. Cedarwood and Clove Laundry Detergent: Borax, baking soda, washing soda, cedarwood and clove essential oils.

How To Make 

Here is a basic recipe for making homemade laundry detergent with essential oils:


  • 1 bar of soap (grated)
  • 1 cup of washing soda
  • 1 cup of baking soda
  • Essential oils of your choice (around 10-20 drops)


  1. Grate the bar of soap into a fine powder using a cheese grater.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the grated soap, washing soda, and baking soda.
  3. Mix in the essential oils of your choice.
  4. Store the mixture in an airtight container.
  5. Use 2 tablespoons per load of laundry.

Note: You can adjust the recipe to your desired consistency by adding more or less soap, washing soda, or baking soda. This recipe can be doubled or halved to fit your needs.

How They Work

Homemade laundry detergents work by combining cleaning agents that remove dirt, grime, and odors from clothes. Here’s how the most common ingredients in these detergents work:

  1. Soap: Grated soap, often in the form of castile soap, acts as a surfactant. This means it helps break down and remove grease and dirt from clothes.
  1. Baking soda: Baking soda is a natural deodorizer and mild cleaner that helps remove stubborn stains and neutralize odors.
  1. Washing soda: Washing soda is a stronger cleaning agent that helps remove grease and oil from clothes.
  1. Essential oils: Essential oils, such as lemon, lavender, and tea tree, can provide a pleasant scent and have antimicrobial properties, making them a natural choice for laundry.

When these ingredients are combined and used in the washing machine, they work together to remove dirt and grime from clothes while also providing a pleasant scent. Homemade laundry detergents are typically more eco-friendly and cost-effective than commercial detergents, making them a great alternative for those who want a more sustainable laundry routine.

What Are The Benefits?

Here are some of the benefits of using homemade laundry detergents:

  1. Cost-effective: Homemade laundry detergents are typically much cheaper than commercial detergents, making them a cost-effective alternative.
  1. Eco-friendly: Homemade laundry detergents are often made from natural ingredients that are biodegradable and do not contain harsh chemicals, making them a more environmentally friendly option.
  1. Customizable: Homemade laundry detergents can be tailored to meet individual needs and preferences, such as adding essential oils for fragrance or using ingredients that are gentler on sensitive skin.
  1. Versatile: Homemade laundry detergents can be used for a variety of laundry tasks, from washing clothes to cleaning towels and bedding.
  1. Chemical-free: Many commercial laundry detergents contain chemicals that can be harmful to human health and the environment. Homemade laundry detergents made from natural ingredients are a safer and healthier option.
  1. Better for sensitive skin: Homemade laundry detergents made with natural ingredients are gentler on sensitive skin and can help reduce skin irritation and allergies.

Safety Precautions

Here are some safety precautions to consider when making and using homemade laundry detergents:

  1. Wear gloves: When handling ingredients like washing soda and baking soda, it’s best to wear gloves to protect your skin from irritation.
  1. Store properly: Store homemade laundry detergents in a cool, dry place, and make sure the container is airtight to prevent contamination.
  1. Keep away from children and pets: Homemade laundry detergents can be harmful if ingested, so it’s important to keep them out of reach of children and pets.
  1. Use the right amount: Always follow the recommended amount of detergent for each load of laundry. Overusing detergent can cause skin irritation and harm the environment.
  1. Patch test: Before using a new homemade laundry detergent recipe, it’s a good idea to do a patch test on a small, inconspicuous area of the garment to make sure it doesn’t cause any damage or skin irritation.
  1. Avoid contact with eyes: If any detergent gets in your eyes, rinse them with water immediately and seek medical attention if necessary.
  1. Read and follow instructions: When making homemade laundry detergents, make sure to read and follow instructions carefully to avoid any accidents or misuse.


In conclusion, homemade laundry detergents offer a cost-effective, eco-friendly, and customizable alternative to commercial laundry detergents. With a few simple ingredients and some basic safety precautions, anyone can make their own laundry detergent and enjoy the benefits of a cleaner, fresher, and greener laundry routine. 

However, it’s important to follow instructions carefully, store the detergents properly, and keep them out of reach of children and pets. By using homemade laundry detergents, you can take a step towards a more sustainable and healthier lifestyle.

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