diy laundry mousse

We covered DIY washing powder in a previous blog but here is a recipe for a gel-like detergent using the same ingredients. You need more space to store this but it dissolves like a dream so there’s no chance of white spotty residue. I was expecting a gel but mine came out like frothy custard instead – laundry mousse! I think the trick here is to mix, mix and then mix some more, using a stick blender.

What you need:

  • ½ bar of natural soap, grated (Fels Naptha, Dr Bronners, Castille soap, Sunlight soap (S.A.) or homemade soap)
  • ½ cup washing soda (aka sodium carbonate or soda ash)
  • ½ cup borax * or baking soda (bicarb)
  • Large pot
  • Bucket

What you do:

  • Add 1 ½ litres of water to soap
  • Heat gently whilst stirring until the soap melts
  • Use a stick blender to make sure soap is completely mixed in
  • Remove from the heat, stir in borax and washing soda, blend
  • Pour 1 litre of hot water into bucket
  • Dump contents of pot into the bucket and blend again
  • Finally, stir in another 5 litres of water and blend once more
  • Let it rest for a full day and it will gel into mousse

Use ½ cup of laundry mousse per load of washing.

*Quite a few people seem to get their knickers in a knot about borax, calling it a questionable and possibly toxic ingredient. It isn’t either of these. All borax is naturally mined from dried out salt lakes and it is a mineral that is no more toxic than table salt.

Tip: leave unwrapped soap on a sunny window sill for a day or two to harden in advance or freeze it. This makes it easier to process.