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Essential Oil Laundry Detergent Recipe for Hard or Soft Water

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My favorite essential oil laundry detergent recipe is so easy to make and saves my family a bundle on the cost of detergent!

Recipes using essential oils can be a simple way to add great smells that everyone in the family loves!


I love using essential oils wherever I can in my house. I use essential oils for everything from diffusing oils into the air when someone has a cold to adding essential oils to cleaning supplies.

I love making my own homemade laundry detergent because I get to add my favorite scents using essential oils.

This essential oil laundry detergent recipe is so simple and costs much less than traditional laundry detergent. The recipe makes about 12 cups of detergent and should clean about 48 loads of laundry.

This essential oil laundry detergent recipe will work both for traditional top-loading washing machines and High Efficiency (HE) washing machines.

Essential Oil Laundry Detergent Recipe for Hard or Soft Water


This essential oil laundry detergent recipe is completely customizable for you! Add your favorite essential oil blends or try my favorite oils listed below.


How to Make Essential Oil Laundry Detergent

The essential oils you add are completely up to you. I like to switch between lemon, a lavender/cedarwood mix, or use the Majestic Breeze blend from Rocky Mountain Oils which has a piney scent.


Essential oil options:

Mix the powdered ingredients together. Grate the soap into small flakes using a cheese grater. If you leave the soap out to dry for a few days before mixing the detergent, the soap is a lot easier to grate.

Pour the soap flakes into the powdered mixture, then add the essential oils 10 drops at a time (10 lemon, 10 cedarwood, then 10 jasmine, for example). Stir the mixture after each 10 drop oil addition.

I like to add about 1/4 of a cup of detergent per load. If you have extremely hard water, you may want to adjust the amount of borax in the mixture, as borax acts as a water softener. If you have hard water, you may want to skip the borax altogether.

Use slightly less detergent in an HE machine to ensure the detergent rinses out completely.

I use the essential oil laundry detergent recipe as-is and it has always made our clothes clean, fresh, and smelling great!

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Tuesday 13th of February 2018

Very cool recipe! I just may need to try this. Pinned. Thank you for sharing on Merry Monday! Hope to see ya next week! Kim


Wednesday 5th of October 2016

I've been using this exact recipe for a few years and it works and smells great!