Just a quick post today because I'm going to work and I have a few things to do before I go. It will be a big day there as I'm presenting another Frugal Home workshop.
Anonymous asked this question last week: I made some liquid laundry soap from Fel-Naptha soap, borax and washing soda... and my whites are so dingy I can't stand it! When I used the same ingredients but just grated the soap and left it dry, I didn't notice my whites getting dingy.
When I was at work yesterday one of the volunteers said the same thing and that she gave up using it because her clothes and linens slowly went grey. I'm not absolutely sure why this happens but I guess the water in different areas must play some part.
I always use the powder now. It's easier to make up and store. I have a front loader and I've never had a problem with the powder dissolving.
If your clothes are greying or if you have stained clothes, when you make up your mix, add one part oxy bleach like Napisan, Oxiclean. Clorox Oxi Magic or any of the generics. I use the Aldi generic, it's very good and much cheaper than a brand name oxy.
So to make up this mix in powdered form use:
2 parts grated soap or flakes
1 part borax
1 part washing soda
1 part oxy bleach
Mix it together and use two tablespoons (about ¼ cup) in each washing machine load.
I hope that helps. If you've been using another variation of this, or something completely different, please share your secret.
Have a beautiful day.
More information on oxygen bleach.
ADDITION: I love the comments coming in on this topic, especially Toria's suggestion to process the soap in a food processor to get a very fine powder, CJ Stewart's peroxide in the bleach dispenser and the strange one of aspirin in the wash from Kathy. Let's work together on this, ladies and gentlemen, and see if we can troubleshoot the problems some of us have using home made laundry powder. Thanks for all your help, ideas, and suggestions, and for wanting to be involved in finding solutions for our entire community.