How to make laundry soap | Videos | What you can do | David Suzuki Foundation

Make your own green cleaning recipes that work! They are a simple and cost effective way to avoid toxic chemicals in conventional cleaning products. In a few minutes make a big batch of liquid laundry soap with David Suzuki's Queen of Green, Lindsay Coulter and check out more green cleaning recipes for your home.

Liquid Laundry Soap Recipe

Time: 20 minutes
Shelf-life: indefinitely (it's soap silly)
Tools: measuring cup (dry and liquid), about a 7 L pail, spoon, large saucepan, empty jugs or containers for storage
 (or scoop from the pail)
Caution: read about green cleaning ingredients, before you start. Always store your ingredients away from kids and pets, label your finished product, and make your soap away from food and use gloves if you have sensitive skin (washing soda is particularly caustic).

Ingredients for liquid laundry soap

  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) borax (look in the laundry soap isle of your grocery store)
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) washing soda (It's not baking soda and can be more challenging to find. Check health food stores or organic grocery stores.)
  • 250 ml (1 cup) soap granules (Check health food stores or organic grocery stores or grate a bar of eco-friendly soap)
  • 7 litres of water
  • Optional: 10-
20 drops essential oil (e.g., lavender, sweet orange, tea tree, lemongrass for their anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties)


Fill a large saucepan fill with regular tap water, about 2 litres. Add soap granules and heat until diluted. While your water and soap granule mixture is boiling add borax and washing soda to your pail. Fill your pail half full of hot tap water and stir. When soap mixture is ready add it to your pail and top up pail with more water. Stir. Add essential oils last. Stir. Let cool. You can store the mixture in the pail and scoop out 125 ml (1/2 cup) per load or pour solution into containers — reuse your laundry soap container.

The soap will become a gelatin-like mixture and some liquid will separate. Don't fret, this is normal. I like this liquid recipe because it works awesome in the cold water cycle.

Trouble-shooting tips

Whites need a boost?
Add 125 ml (1/2 cup) of baking soda to your wash.

Have an HE machine?
I don't, at least not yet. You may have to experiment and use less since HE machines are so efficient.

Have hard water?
Add more washing soda.

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