Toxins in the Home-Part 1- Laundry Detergent

A couple years ago I started on a journey of researching toxic items in my home.  There has been an ebb and flow to my level of caring about these toxins, just because buying things from the store is more convenient.  Now that I have children, though, it is again at the forefront of my mind. 

Of all household chores, laundry is definitely my least favorite.  Don’t get me wrong, I love clean clothes.  I just seem to have a problem with getting them folded and put away in a reasonable amount of time.   One change I made a while back was with my detergent.  I started purchasing All-Free and Clear.  That sounds pretty good, right?  Well, upon further review, I was disgusted to find out this detergent has a D rating from the Environmental Working Group (EWG).  A big, fat D!  Here I was thinking I was purchasing something less toxic for my family and it turns out to actually be worse than what I was using previously!  

So, I set out to find a DIY laundry detergent.  I have settled on one from Wellness Mama and am loving it!  Not only is it non-toxic, but it is also cheaper to make in the long run.  For this budgeting mama, that is a major plus!

Here is what you will need:


  • bar of soap (grated)- I used Dr. Bronner’s
  • 1 cup washing soda
  • 1 cup borax
  • 20 drops essential oil of your choice- I used lime this time.  I generally gravitate towards lavender for such things, but thought I would branch out and try something with a little more zing.  


  1. Grate the soap using a hand grater or food processor.  Make sure it is grated very finely so it will dissolve in your washer.  If you want to feel the burn in your arms, go with the hand grater!

  2. Mix with the washing soda and borax 
  3. Add essential oils and stir

  4. Store in an air-tight glass jar

  5. Use 1-2 tablespoons per load
There you have it.  It is simple to make, effectively cleans your clothes, and is non-toxic!
Next up…..dryer sheets and a safer alternative!
***There are conflicting thoughts on the safety of Borax.  Here is a link that explains some of that:
 After researching, I feel fine using it in this recipe.

These are the soap bars I used to make this detergent. I used unscented because I wanted to control the scent my detergent had, but you can also order ones with scents like lavender and peppermint.

**This is an affiliate link. If you make a purchase through this link, I will receive a small portion of the sale.