Monday, August 19, 2013

Super Laundry Soap - Washes 128 loads of laundry for just $1.76?

This pin on Pinterest got my attention. A tablespoon of detergent will clean AND get the smell out of your laundry for just one dollar and seventy six cents? Obviously this pinner didn't have children who were dirty smelly soccer players.  I couldn't resist the temptation to whip up a batch of this super soap and give it a try.

It was easy enough to find the 3 ingredients, I found them at Walmarts.  I've been using the 20 Mule Team Borax for awhile now; I wish I knew about it when my kids were young. Added to my regular laundry detergent it works really well, but the money the claim made still had my attention.  By the way, you can find the original pin at here. You might want to read it first before finishing  this post about my experience.

I started by cutting the Fels - Naptha bar of soap. What a name, no wonder no one I know has ever heard of it. When my mom saw this, she decides to tell me my step-father, who owned and operated a dairy farm for years, used it all the time. Nothing like sharing these little secrets when I needed it for the grungy, smelly clothes of a construction worker husband and two, three sport athletes in the house. Ok, mom, so now is better than never. Thanks. :)  As you can see below, Rich cut the soap bar in think pieces. We put them into two quart mason jars we weren't using for other canned goods. We then added the water and let it set over night.

Today I finished processing the soap and gave it a try. Below is what the melted Fels-Naptha bar looked like after I used a knife to slice it into sections so it would blend together better with the other ingredients. I added the required amounts to the jars as the instructions stated and placed the blade and blender bottom right onto the mason jars. I thought, oh wow, now this is efficient. After I tightened the bottom of the blender onto the jars I flipped it and UH OH it started leaking! UGH! Now what do I do? This was an older blender my mom found. I really didn't want to use my Ninja machine.  
As you can see by the next picture, I did end up using my beloved Ninja. I thought, " I clean it up with dish soap, so why can't I mix soap in it?"  I made sure to clean and rinse every nook and cranny of the Ninja after I finished mixing the soap. At least the Ninja got a good cleaning. 

Below are pictures  of the mixture before and after blending the soaps. During this process I couldn't help but think it looked like lemon meringue and lemon whip. Just remember not to lick the spoon or the bowl! 

So here is what the final product looked like in the jars. Now onto the test trials. 

Trial One - It just so happened that Austin had a soccer game last night. Couldn't have timed it better. In the laundry room was a smelly pile of dried sweat. Those of you who know the smell of shin guard sleeves and goalie gloves will understand what I'm talking about. YUCK A DOO! I don't think I'll ever get over that smell!  I started filling up the washing machine with warm water. I added one tablespoon of the soap mix, swished it around a little and then added the clothes.  I was very skeptical at this point because as the wash started agitating there were no soap bubbles. This just didn't seem right. Oh well, I let the wash finish. When it was done, I was pleasantly surprised by the clean smell of the wet wash. It wasn't over powering, as the smell is when you are making the soap, but there was no stink to speak of. Once out of the dryer, the whole load was as clean as if I used detergent and borax. :) 

Trial Two - I did another load of clothes, this time a blanket that spent the night on the ground by a campfire and had dog hair and stink on it. Again, it came out pretty good. 

At this point I'm pretty happy, but not sold yet. I really didn't have any clothes that had major dirt or stains on them. That will be test three another time. 

Lessons learned: 

1. I will use my Ninja again if I make this soap again. However, I shouldn't need it for some time if all I have to use is a Tablespoon per wash. 
2. I had a tee shirt that had grease stains on it in the trial one load. I pre-treated it as I do for any grease stain before washing. The grease did come out. 

I'm not to confident 1 Tbsp will do the job of getting out my son's muddy, greasy work pants. I'll report on that soon.   It almost makes me want to do more laundry. NOT! 

Happy laundering, 

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