Homemade Natural Laundry Detergent for Sensitive Skin

Homemade Natural Laundry Detergent -- so easy!
I have struggled with sensitive skin all of my life… I used to think I was allergic to water since I always got red blotches from taking a bath/shower! Now, I know it was the soaps I was using.
I also have children with sensitive skin. So, I have always used dye and fragrance-free laundry detergent.
But, on my quest to find more natural alternatives to most of our household products, I wanted something that was not only free from dyes and scents but also free from potentially harmful chemicals/toxins. I also wanted it to be as organic as possible.

You can find/buy organically made natural laundry detergent, of course, but they cost quite a lot. I have searched for homemade laundry detergent recipes but wasn’t convinced that Borax was something I wanted to use and I didn’t like the idea of making liquid laundry detergent in the 5-gallon amounts.

I have always used liquid store-bought detergents, so I was hesitant to try a powdered detergent. I remember how my mom didn’t like powdered store-bought laundry detergents (from a popular name brand), I think because it didn’t always dissolve and left a residue on clothes.

I use 2 tablespoons for each load (1/8 cup). I always add the detergent to the bottom of the washer before adding clothes, because I think that it helps dissolve the powder (and I haven’t had any problems with it)!

— If you want convenient, easy, and safe I recommend: HE Ultra Power Plus™ Laundry Detergent. This highly concentrated, superior stain-fighting powder contains biodegradable surfactants and is free from phosphates and fillers. Designed for both high-efficiency (HE) and conventional washing machines, this formula whitens whites, brightens brights and dissolves grease and grime. Safe on all fabrics, including hand-washables and microfiber. —

the best DIY laundry detergent

I calculated the cost of the ingredients that I used and came up with an approximate cost per load.

  • baking soda per 4 cups = $0.97 (I bought mine from Costco)
  • washing soda per 3 cups = $2.43 (I bought mine from Walmart)
  • organic castile soap per bar/2 cups = $3.29 You can buy Dr. Woods pre-scented bar soap for cheaper ($2.99/bar) to bring the cost down and omit the essential oil drops
  • essential oil drops = not sure, but it cost less than $17 for a 4oz, bottle of my favorite brand of Eucalyptus essential oil and that lasts for a VERY long time!
  • total = $6.69 per recipe batch (30+ loads) -about half as much as what I had been buying!
  • 22.3 cents per load

So, here is the small batch recipe that makes approximately 30 loads if using 2 tablespoons per load. This amount can fit in a 64-ounce (a half gallon) container. Walmart has adorable glass containers with lids and 2 tablespoon size measuring spoons (coffee scoop). I just used an old gallon jar that I had, since I’ll probably make double batches from now on.

Homemade Natural Laundry Detergent {for sensitive skin}


Grate Castile soap

(Optional: blend grated Castile soap in a high-powered blender or food processor with 1 cup of baking soda until fine.)

Mix by hand with all other ingredients until combined.

Use 2 tablespoons per load.

Update: Although I still love this recipe, I have now found an even easier recipe that is cheaper. It is still all natural and super quick to mix up.

I use a mix of eucalyptus and lemon essential oil in addition to the detergent because eucalyptus is supposed to keep dust mites out of your clothes & bedding and lemon is great for stains and smells! I have a mixture of the essential oils in a glass dropper and add 5 drops to each load.

You can see my new favorite homemade, powdered detergent HERE

Check Out My Homemade Natural Powdered Dishwasher Detergent 

9 thoughts on “Homemade Natural Laundry Detergent for Sensitive Skin

  1. Sounds like something I should try! But how would it work in a new top loader? would I still put the powder in first in the bottom of the washer or pour it into the soap dispenser on the top?

  2. Clarrissaa I used to make my own for years but after a few years I noticed thes were “heavier”. After some research I found out that this type of detergent is only good for old fashion scrubbing “wash board’. For automatic washers we have to use a lifting detergent to remove the oils etc that our bodies leave in clothing. Laundry love and science had great info on their facebook page.

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