Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Whipped Laundry Detergent Test


I have been making my own laundry detergent using the same ingredients in the whipped detergent and have been happy with it. The whipped detergent is reportedly better and doesn't use as much. So I decided I would give it a try.

You can see the original here from Budget 101.

WARNING: If you have lung problems you probably want to wear a mask through the entire process. I didn't and I'm regretting it. I didn't directly breathe in any of the fumes but let's face it, the fumes are in the air when this stuff has to cook for so long.

A note regarding using the laundry crystals. These are scent enhancers, not fabric softeners. The original said it was to eliminate the need for softener and I've seen others suggest that too. Just wanted to point out in mine that it is a scent only option. I think next time I will just use lavender oil for scent.

What you'll need:
1 bar Fels Naptha, finely grated - No substitutes!
1 cup Borax
1 cup Washing Soda - NOT baking soda!
1/3 cup Purex laundry crystals -Any scent you prefer and this is OPTIONAL
4 cups water
2 - 1 quart Mason jars with lids
Large, heavy pot
heavy spoon for mixing

Measure everything out and have all supplies ready before you start.

1. Finely grate the Fels Naptha. I used an old fashion grater. I don't think the piece of my pinkie knuckle that got grated into the soap will affect the usefulness of the final mixture. (Note: Be careful not to grate your fingers with the soap.) Set to the side for now.

2. Mix Borax, washing soda and Purex crystals in a bowl. Make sure it's well combined. Set aside.


3. Pour the 4 cups of water into large pot and bring to boil. Dump in the grated Fels Naptha and stir constantly. It's going to clump up a bit. Keep stirring and scraping. Make sure to get the bottom and sides of pan as you are stirring. When the water starts to boil again reduce the heat to keep it at a slow boil but not so much it's boiling out of the pan. Keep stirring. When you get tired of stirring, stir some more. Around 15 minutes of stirring and wondering why you even started this the Fels Naptha should be dissolved. You don't want to see any lumps in it.


4. Remove completely dissolved soap mixture from the heat. Pour in the dry mixture and stir well to combine. Imagine stirring a few cups of sand into water, that's what it's going to feel like. Beware sensitive teeth. It's like running your finger nails across a chalk board. Ugh! Return to heat and continue stirring until you don't feel anymore grit. (The original recipe says this takes 3-4 minutes. I stirred another 15 minutes until I simply gave up because the grit was NOT going away! Apparently because of the use of the crystals)



5. Carefully pour about half of the mixture into one of the quart jars. Using a canning funnel helps. Pour the other half into the second jar. Add warm water (so the jars don't shatter) up to the where the jar starts curving up. Put a lid on the jars and tighten. Turn the jars upside and wait.

6. Soon the mixture will separate into layers. Let the mixture cool until you can hold it.

7. Realize at this point you could skip step 5 by using an immersion blender. Also discover that a hand mixer will either take forever or not work at all to whip to the right consistency.
No!

8. Pour the mixture into a bowl and use immersion blender to whip it until it is the consistency of mayonnaise. Wonder if you could have just stuck the immersion blender in the jar instead of making a bigger mess. Hmm....


9. Funnel the whipped laundry soap back into jar.

You are now ready to use your whipped detergent.

Use 1 tablespoon per load.

Add detergent after the clothes and use the running water to clean your spoon off.

Do not use more than recommended as more does not mean cleaner. This is also not going to suds up and suds are not required to get your clothes clean.

Will I make this again? Maybe. If I do I will skip step 5 since it's unnecessary with an immersion blender. This made a horrible mess and I've burned candy that didn't stick as hard to the pan as whatever is in the bottom of this pan did. However, if it lasts as long as it should an occasional mess wouldn't be that bad.






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