When my son got a bad case of eczema as a baby I started making this washing powder thats all natural chemical-, irritant- and bad-stuff free. Not only did his eczema go away, I also saved lots of money on washing powder and dishwasher pods.
Its easy and really cost effective if you buy the ingredients in bulk.
Spread 2kg bicarbonate of soda (bicarb) in a thin layer over baking trays. Bake at 200 degrees Celsius for 1hour. Bicarb is fluffy and shiny but when it is ready it will be dull and grainy. The chemical process actually now makes it washing soda and the weight will have reduced to about 1,5 kg.
Mix the washing soda with 2kg Bicarb and 1kg Epson Salts. You may want to divide that beforehand into two bowls to be able to mix it if you don’t have one very large bowl. You can add an additional few drops of essential oil and mix it through… I prefer lemongrass.
Store in an air tight container until needed.
For softener I use half a cup of Vinegar in a large load. Its not as soft as store bought conventional softener but it does the trick and I am willing to sacrifice as much for the environment!
From the Washing Powder recipe above, take 2 cups and add enough lemon juice to make it sticky and clumping. Fill ice cube trays (not so much that it won’t fit into the pod holder) and push down with gloves or cover with cling wrap because as it can very abrasive and drying on your hands. Leave in the sun for a day or two to dry out… It is ready when you can pop it out of the tray without it breaking.
You can use a tablespoon or two of the powder as it is as well or add a little citric acid to make it fizz.
Use salt as normal and Vinegar as rinsing aid.
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Many Mommies turn over to natural products and I get a lot of requests to share what I use. I love making my own because I know exactly whats in it and it makes me feel like a “real” Home maker! My biggest purchases is always Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda), Epson Salts and Vinegar. You won’t believe what you can do with those three ingredients… a paste of Bicarb and Vinegar cleans like no other cleaning product can. I buy it by the kilos and litres so it makes household products very affordable. Here are a few of my tried and tested products:
1. Baby wipes
Many mommies use cloth and I still believe its the way to go but for handy disposables when you go out I buy Mother Nature’s bio degradable and flushable nappy liners (R75 for 100) and cut it in half. I then roll the cut liners (about 1/4 of the whole pack at a time) into a roll and stick it into a re-usable wipes container and pour the following solution over it:
2 cups warm water
1-2 tablespoons baby wash
2 tablespoons olive oil or mineral oil
1 tablespoons bicarbonate of soda
2-5 drops Tea Tree essential oil
2-5 drops Lavender or Lemon grass essential oil (optional)
2. Roll on
I just love this roll on and really wish it didn’t melt in summer! Some people store it in their fridge once the weather gets warmer but I prefer to buy natural roll-on in summer. Initially the ingredients is a little costly but once you have it, it lasts for very long and you have multiple uses for every ingredient so you save a lot of money in the long run.
This Recipe lasts me all summer:
Place 3T Virgin Coconut Oil, 2T pure Shea butter in a small metal cup over a bowl of hot water.
When oils are melted, add 3T bicarbonate of Soda and 2T arrow root, 5 drops each of lavender, tea tree and lemongrass essential oils into the oil mix. Stir well to combine.
Pour oil mixture into an empty deodorant stick container and allow to cool. Just make sure you cover the base well with something like a cut up lid of an ice cream container or something so it won’t leak. I used a Dove roll on container and mine did not leak but my container can also just be filled half way… Im sure most of them use this trick though. If you dont like the consistency once it sets, you can easily melt it again and play around with different proportions of oils for firmer consistency. Whatever is left over I pour into silicone mini muffin cups and just add the desired amount to my re-used deodorant container every month. I usually use 2 mini muffin moulded sticks to fill up and I usually get about 3 deodorant sticks out of it. It sounds complicated but once you get the hang of it, its really very convenient.
3. Dishwasher Pods
I calculated the difference in price of store bought dishwasher pods :
Dishwasher pods X (store bought):
1,66 kg Pods X= 84 pods
= R78,30 p/kg
4kg Bicarb = R44,24
1kg Epson salts = R6,60
4,5 kg = R50,84
= R11,29 p/kg (calculated without electricity but should be around R5 extra)
1,66kg Pods X = R130
1,5 kg Home made = R 16,90
REALLY BIG SAVE!
Mix 1,5kg washing soda (You can buy Soda ash in pool sections or see my recipe below) with 2kg Bicarb and 1kg Epson Salts. You may want to divide that beforehand into two bowls to be able to mix it if you don’t have one very large bowl.
Store in a bucket until needed.
From this take 2 cups and add enough lemon juice to make it sticky and clumping. Fill ice cube trays and push down with gloves or cover with cling wrap because it is very drying on your hands. Leave in the sun for a day or two to dry out. It is ready when you can pop it out of the tray without it breaking. You can use the powder as it is as well. Can add citric acid as well. Use salt as normal and Vinegar as rinsing aid.
This recipe uses 2 cups powder = +- 18 pods
4,5kg powder in bulk prepared = 17 batches
= 306 pods in total out of this batch
4. Washing soda recipe:
For 1,5 kg washig soda. Spread 2kg bicarb in a thin layer over baking trays. Bake at 200 degrees celcius for 1h-1h30. Bicarb is fluffy and shiny. When it is ready, the washing soda is dull and grainy.
5. Washing Powder and Softener
Use recipe for Dishwasher Pods above but leave it in powder form without adding lemon juice. For softener I use half a cup of Vinegar in a large load and add 10 drops of essential oil for a bit of fragrance. Its not as soft and doesn’t smell as good as store bought conventional softener but it does the trick and I am willing to sacrifice as much for the environment. There are natural softeners available but I found them quite expensive.
In a large bowl:
2 cups Bicarb
1 cup Epson Salts
1 cup Citric Acid
In another bowl or small jug:
90 drops (3 teaspoons essential oil)
3 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons water
Slowly Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry mix. If it starts to fizz, add dry ingredient to stop fizzing. Start adding some food coloring. Final consistency should be like slightly damp sand and squish in hands without crumbling.
Stack and pack silicone moulds with the damp sandy mixture, or roll your own balls. Press out and wrap them in rows in paper towel to collect excess water otherwise they will fizz out. If they still swell out and look too disfigured you can always make them in balls at this stage… At least they will all be the same size.
Put them in an airtight container with a paper towel inside in the shade for a few days to dry out.
7. No more tangles spray
Just add one to two tablespoons of your natural conditioner to an empty used spray bottle and top up with warm water. Remember boiled water melts plastic bottles and leave enough space to shake. Start at the bottom when combing hair and spray on sections before combing through. If the hair seems oily or sticky you used too much for your particular conditioner… Just throw some out and top up with water again.
That it for now… keep in touch for more updates!
A few of you have asked me after I wrote this post to give you ideas for alternative products. Believe it or not… it was actually going to be my next post. So here goes… the long awaited list of alternatives I use.
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