How to Make Homemade Laundry Detergent Without Borax

2 weeks ago 20

In today's environmentally conscious world, more people are seeking alternatives to commercial laundry detergents that may contain harmful chemicals. Borax, a common ingredient in many commercial detergents, has come under scrutiny for its potential health and environmental risks. If you're looking for a safer and more eco-friendly option, consider making your own homemade laundry detergent without borax. In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through the steps to create an effective and sustainable laundry solution.

Doing laundry is a household chore we can't escape, but we can make it more sustainable and budget-friendly by crafting our own laundry detergent. This article will guide you through the process of making homemade laundry detergent without borax, a chemical often found in commercial detergents that you might want to avoid.

Understanding Borax

Borax, also known as sodium borate, is a naturally occurring mineral commonly used in laundry detergents and household cleaning products. While it's effective at cleaning, borax has raised concerns due to its potential health and environmental impacts.

Why Go Borax-Free

Several reasons make opting for borax-free laundry detergent a smart choice. Borax can be harmful if ingested, and it may irritate sensitive skin. Additionally, its production and mining have environmental consequences. By making your own detergent without borax, you can reduce your carbon footprint and minimize the risk of exposure to harmful chemicals.

Ingredients You'll Need

Before we dive into the DIY process, let's gather the essential ingredients:

  • Washing soda (sodium carbonate)
  • Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)
  • Castile soap or another natural liquid soap
  • Essential oils (for fragrance, if desired)

DIY Borax-Free Laundry Detergent Recipe

Here's a simple recipe for creating your homemade detergent:


  • 1 cup washing soda
  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup liquid castile soap
  • 20-30 drops of your favorite essential oils (e.g., lavender, lemon, or tea tree)
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the washing soda and baking soda.
  • Slowly add the liquid castile soap, stirring continuously until the mixture resembles damp sand.
  • Add your chosen essential oils and mix well.
  • Transfer the detergent into an airtight container for storage.

How to Use Your Homemade Detergent

Using your homemade laundry detergent is as easy as using commercial products. Simply follow these steps:

  • Measure out 2-3 tablespoons of your homemade detergent per load.
  • Add it directly to the drum of your washing machine.
  • Start the washing machine as usual.

Benefits of Homemade Detergent

There are several advantages to making your own laundry detergent:

  • Cost-effective: Homemade detergent can save you money in the long run.
  • Eco-friendly: You'll reduce your environmental impact by avoiding harmful chemicals and plastic waste.
  • Customizable: You can choose your favorite scents and ingredients to suit your preferences.

Tips for Storing Homemade Detergent

To ensure your homemade detergent stays effective, store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Use within six months for the best results.

Exploring Eco-Friendly Laundry Beyond Detergent

Your journey towards a more eco-friendly laundry routine doesn't end with detergent alternatives. There are several other steps you can take to minimize your environmental impact and promote sustainability:

  1. Conscious Clothing Choices: When shopping for new clothes, opt for high-quality garments that are built to last. Invest in timeless pieces rather than fast fashion, which contributes to textile waste.

  2. Repair and Upcycle: Before discarding damaged clothing, consider repairing or upcycling it. Simple sewing skills can extend the life of your favorite items and reduce waste.

  3. Microfiber Filters: Install microfiber filters in your washing machine. These filters capture tiny plastic fibers released from synthetic fabrics, preventing them from entering waterways and harming aquatic life.

  4. Eco-Friendly Dry Cleaning: Seek out dry cleaners that use eco-friendly cleaning methods. Traditional dry cleaning chemicals can be harmful to the environment.

  5. Community Sharing: Consider setting up a clothing swap with friends and neighbors. This not only reduces the need for new purchases but also fosters a sense of community.

  6. Water Conservation: Implement water-saving practices in your laundry room. Fix any leaks promptly and ensure your washing machine is set to the appropriate water level for each load.

  7. Energy-Efficient Appliances: If it's time to replace your washer and dryer, choose energy-efficient models with high Energy Star ratings to save energy and reduce utility costs.


  1. Can I add homemade detergent to my regular store-bought detergent for extra cleaning power? Mixing homemade and commercial detergents isn't recommended. They may not work well together and could lead to less effective cleaning.

  2. Can I use homemade detergent in a front-loading washing machine? Yes, homemade detergent is suitable for front-loading washing machines. In fact, they often work well together, as front-loaders are designed to work with low-sudsing detergents.

  3. Is borax-free detergent suitable for hard water? Borax-free detergent can work in hard water, but consider adding a water softener like washing soda or a little vinegar to boost its effectiveness.

  4. Can I use homemade detergent for hand washing delicate items? Yes, homemade detergent can be used for hand washing delicate items. Dilute it in water and gently wash your delicate garments.

  5. What can I do with leftover washing soda and baking soda? These versatile ingredients have various household uses. They can be used for cleaning, deodorizing, and even as ingredients in homemade cleaning solutions.

By adopting these sustainable laundry practices and addressing additional questions through our FAQs, you can truly embrace a greener and more eco-conscious approach to taking care of your clothing and the environment.

Your commitment to making homemade laundry detergent without borax is just the beginning of a more sustainable and responsible approach to laundry. As you integrate these eco-friendly practices into your daily routine, you'll not only save money but also reduce your carbon footprint and contribute to a cleaner planet.

Remember that small changes in your laundry habits can have a significant impact over time. By choosing eco-friendly detergents, repairing clothes, and making thoughtful clothing purchases, you're actively participating in the global effort to reduce waste and protect our environment.

Additional Tips for a Greener Laundry Routine

To further enhance your sustainable laundry practices, here are some additional tips:

  1. Cold Water Washing: Whenever possible, wash your clothes in cold water. This not only conserves energy but also helps prevent colors from fading and preserves the life of your garments.

  2. Air Drying: Consider air-drying your clothes instead of using a dryer. Hang your laundry on a clothesline or use a drying rack. It's a simple way to save on energy costs and extend the lifespan of your clothing.

  3. Use Eco-Friendly Stain Removers: For stubborn stains, opt for eco-friendly stain removers or pre-treatment options. Many natural solutions, like lemon juice or hydrogen peroxide, can effectively tackle stains.

  4. Conserve Water: Be mindful of your water usage. Only run full loads in your washing machine, and if you have a high-efficiency washer, make sure to use it properly to minimize water wastage.

  5. Repurpose and Recycle: Don't throw away old or worn-out clothing. Consider repurposing them into rags or donating them to textile recycling programs. This reduces landfill waste and promotes a circular economy.

  6. Choose Sustainable Fabrics: When shopping for new clothes, opt for garments made from sustainable materials like organic cotton, bamboo, or Tencel. These fabrics have a lower environmental impact.

  7. Regular Maintenance: Keep your washing machine in good condition by cleaning it regularly and checking for leaks. A well-maintained machine is more efficient and will save you money in the long run.