Thursday, 31 January 2013

Homemade Laundry Soap aka Gloop

My husband suffers quite badly from eczema and recently he's had a really painful flare up. He's tried all sorts of remedies over the years but none of them have had lasting benefits and now he's been told his only option is some drug that has a whole lot of potential side effects so I'm looking at what changes I can make that might help and make that unnecessary.

One of them is laundry soap. We always use hypoallergenic non-biological type ones but I wanted to try something even milder that didn't cost a fortune just because it didn't have all the perfumes and "gentle" stuff in it. This will surprise you, but I didn't get the recipe from Pinterest! Nope, I remember seeing it on Superscrimspers last year so I looked up the recipe (on Claire Gay's site) and here it is:

1 x grated bar of 100% vegetable soap.
I couldn't see any in the shop I was in (Wilkinsons) so I got a box of Dri-Pak Soap Flakes
250ml Soda Crystals (the sort you'd normally use to clean your drain)
20 x drops of essential oil. I used chamomile because it's supposed to be good for eczema.

1) Boil 560ml (a pint) of water and add grated bar of soap or 100g of soap flakes (a quarter of the box).
2) Reduce the heat a bit and stir it a lot until all the soap has dissolved (5-10 minutes). Take it off the heat.
3) Measure 250ml of Soda Crystals and add water to make it up to 560ml (1 pint) with hot tap water.
4) Pour this into the soap mixture, add your essential oils* if you're using them, then stir until it's combined.

It will go all gloopy but it does thicken and harden slightly so it's easy to scoop and not sloppy. I store mine in a plastic tub and use an old scoop from a tub of Vanish which is around quarter of a cup - scoop and all on top of the washing in the drum.

* there is some suggestion that lavender and tea tree oils can have a negative effect on the hormones in young boys so it's best to avoid these.

The oil cost me £6.88 from Holland & Barret, but if you have any lying around you can save on the cost. The soda crystals were 90p and the soap flakes £1.20 so £2.10 will get me four pretty big batches of washing gloop. Not sure if it will help with the eczema but it's certainly not going to do any harm.