Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Another "Green" Experiment

Lately, I've been playing with going green, or going natural with everything in the house. Finally got the guts up to try to make my own soap bars. The first 2 were a bust, so started looking into other soap ideas. Finally tried making my own liquid soap.

The first one I tried to make was for a liquid castile soap. I tried to make it the old fashioned way with 100% olive oil. It turned out great!!! I'm starting to use it for most of my cleaning, and I am pleased with the results. Still have to tweak the window cleaner recipe, but found several others on the net for this "liquid gold".

I've also tried my hand at homemade dishwasher powder. Figured out what I was doing wrong. (Yes, I will share the recipe after the story) When I first tried it, it was borax and baking soda. Left an awful powder residue on my dishes. Then found one recipe that said to use Kool-aide packets with the recipe. Same story. Then came Kosher Salt. Didn't help. Finally, after some more research, and a screw-up on my part for the chemical to make the liquid soap, I finally came up with the following recipe:

1/4 cup borax
1/4 cup Washing soda
2 tablespoons Kosher Salt
3 tablespoons Citric Acid
Small Amount of Rice *

I don't know what it is with this area, but using the washing soda instead of baking soda really helped. I tried the Citric Acid mixed with my regular dishwasher powder, and suddenly had glasses that were clear, not cloudy. These were the same glasses that I tried the other experiments on, they clouded up and I just couldn't get rid of them. This does make a small batch, in fact, I'm keeping it in a pint-sized mason jar. When I use it, I use about 1 tablespoon in each cup, and my dishes haven't looked better. I also use white vinegar in the rinse compartment.
* Side Note: After making this, it went into a rock-hard mass that I had to scrape out of the jar. I went back to look at other recipes that others have made, and they were having the same problems. One person added about a teaspoon of regular white rice and the clumping problem disappeared. I haven't tried this myself since my rice supply got bugs in it, but will try it again soon with the rice and see if that helps.

At the rate I'm going, I'll be able to clean out all of those old chemical cleaners the ads say we just can't live without. Between what I'm finding to make with regular cleaners, and my steamer, we should be free of those store cleaners in next to no time!!!

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