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How to wash clothes without detergent

How to wash clothes without detergent. Are you tired of using harsh detergents on your clothes? Want to try something different? Here’s a secret: you can wash your clothes without detergent!

From baking soda and vinegar to other cheap household items, laundry detergent can be made at home! Sounds interesting, right? So, get ready to embrace a more eco-friendly approach to laundry!

How to wash clothes without detergent

How to wash clothes without detergent 2023

Here are some natural and simple homemade:

DIY Homemade Laundry Detergent For Sensitive Skin

Did you ever think of making a homemade laundry detergent that would also be gentle to your skin and not reckon it? Well, here’s a guide to making one for your sensitive skin.


  • 1 bar of grated castile soap (such as Dr. Bronner’s)
  • 1 cup of washing soda (not baking soda)
  • 1 cup of baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of citric acid
  • Optional: 10-15 drops of essential oil (such as lavender or peppermint)


  1. Grate the bar of castile soap using a cheese grater or food processor.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the grated soap, washing soda, baking soda, and citric acid. Use a spoon or your hands to mix the ingredients together until they are well combined.
  3. If you want to add essential oils for fragrance, stir in 10-15 drops of your preferred essential oil.
  4. Transfer the mixture to an airtight container, such as a glass jar with a lid.

How to use it?

To use the detergent, add 1-2 tablespoons to each load of laundry. You can adjust the amount depending on the size of the load and how dirty the clothes are.

The detergent will not create a lot of suds, but it will still effectively clean your clothes.

DIY Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap

Making homemade liquid laundry soap is a great way to save money, avoid harmful chemicals and reduce your environmental impact. It is surprisingly easy to make and requires just a few simple ingredients. Here’s how:


  1. 6 cups of water
  2. 20 soap nuts
  3. Large saucepan
  4. Strainer
  5. Container
  6. Freezer bag


  1. Begin by pouring 6 cups of water into the large saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add 20 soap nuts to the pot of heated water, stirring occasionally until they dissolve completely, which usually takes around 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer the mixture through a strainer so that all of the shells are caught and any excess liquid can drain away in order to obtain a thick paste-like solution.
  4. Pour this solution into an appropriate container while it’s still hot as it will thicken up even more once cooled down before use or storage in an airtight container such as a freezer bag for later use if necessary or desired.


  • For extra scent you can add 1-2 drops of essential oils such as lavender or tea tree oil directly into your detergent depending on personal preference and desired aroma; plus these oils have natural antibacterial properties too!
  • To get bigger stains out, pre-treat them before washing them with diluted lemon juice or baking soda paste, then simply follow up by washing them normally with this homemade liquid laundry soap solution afterward – voilà clean & fresh clothes!

DIY Homemade Powder Laundry Detergent

DIY Homemade Powder Laundry Detergent

To make homemade powder laundry detergent, you will need 3 cups of washing soda, 2 cups of Borax, 10 ounces of bar soap, a grater, a food processor or blender, and a container to store the finished product in.


  1. Using the grater, grate down the bar soap into small pieces and set aside.
  2. Place the washing soda and Borax in the food processor or blender and blend until it has been ground into fine powder.
  3. Add the grated bar soap to the powder mixture and then blend again until everything is completely combined.
  4. Transfer this mixture to your desired storage container for easy use when needed.
  5. To use your homemade solution for doing laundry without detergent just add 1-2 tablespoons for every load of laundry (depending on size) directly into your washer drum before adding any clothes or other items. This should be enough to clean your clothes efficiently without leaving any residue behind from detergent!


  1. Test out certain brands of soaps as some may leave residue too quickly while some have longer-lasting effects.
  2. Finally, remember that because this is an all-natural mix there are no chemicals added which makes it ideal for those with sensitive skin or allergies; but do be sure to test any samples first before using them regularly on delicate fabrics!

Other Emergency Laundry Alternatives


Vinegar contains acetic acid which acts as a natural antibacterial and antifungal agent, making it an effective cleaner for clothes.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to use vinegar for washing clothes without detergent:

  1. Sort your clothes by color and fabric type to prevent color bleeding or damage to delicate fabrics.
  2. Before washing, pre-treat any stains with vinegar. You can apply vinegar directly to the stain or mix vinegar with water in a spray bottle and apply it to the stain. Let the vinegar sit on the stain for 10-15 minutes before washing.
  3. Add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to the rinse cycle of your washing machine. The vinegar will help remove any soap residue and soften your clothes. If you don’t have a washing machine, you can soak your clothes in a mixture of water and vinegar before washing them.
  4. Wash your clothes as you normally would, but without detergent. The vinegar will help remove odors and stains from your clothes.
  5. Once your clothes are done washing, dry them as you normally would. Vinegar does not leave any residue, so you don’t need to worry about a vinegar scent on your clothes.

In addition to using vinegar in the rinse cycle, you can also use it to clean your washing machine. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to an empty washing machine and run a hot water cycle, helping remove any soap residue or build-up in your washing machine.


Borax, also known as sodium borate, is a naturally occurring mineral that has been used for cleaning purposes for over a century.

Borax is an effective cleaner due to its alkaline pH, which helps break down dirt and grease.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to use Borax for washing clothes without detergent:

  1. Fill your washing machine with clothes as you normally would.
  2. Add 1/2 cup of borax to the washing machine drum.
  3. Start the washing machine and let it run through its cycle as normal.

Hair Shampoo

Hair Shampoo to wash clothes without detergent

Shampoo contains surfactants, which are compounds that lower the surface tension between two liquids or between a liquid and a solid which can help to lift dirt and oil from clothing.

In addition to surfactants, the shampoo also contains other ingredients that soften fabrics and reduce static cling.


You only need to add one or two tablespoons of hair shampoo to your wash cycle to wash clothes without detergent and that’s it! Just be careful of the mildness of your shampoo. Some shampoos contain harsh ingredients that may not suit delicate fabric so be cautious of it!

Club Soda

Club soda, also known as carbonated water, is a fizzy beverage. The carbonation helps to break down dirt and grime, while the sodium in the club soda can help to soften fabrics.

In addition, club soda is a gentle and natural cleaning agent that won’t damage or fade your clothes. It’s also a great option for removing stains and odors from your clothes, especially if you’re dealing with tough stains like wine or grease.


  1. Start by filling a bowl or basin with club soda. You will need enough club soda to fully submerge the item of clothing you want to wash.
  2. Place the item of clothing in the club soda and gently agitate it to help loosen any dirt or stains.
  3. Let the item soak in the club soda for at least 30 minutes. For particularly stubborn stains, you may want to leave it to soak for longer.
  4. After soaking, remove the item of clothing from the club soda and gently squeeze out any excess liquid.
  5. Hang the item to dry or lay it flat on a clean towel.

Hand Soap or Dish Soap

If you don’t have laundry detergent, hand soap or dish soap can work as a substitute. Simply add a small amount of soap to a sink or basin filled with water, agitate your clothes, and rinse thoroughly.
But, be cautious that they may be rough for your silky clothes.

Oxygen-Based Bleach

Oxygen-based bleach is a powerful and eco-friendly alternative to detergent for washing clothes.


  1. After sorting your clothes, read the instructions on your oxygen-based bleach to determine how much to use. As a general rule, use 1/4 to 1/2 cup of bleach per load of laundry.
  2. Add Oxygen-Based Bleach to the Washing Machine.
  3. Add the measured amount of oxygen-based bleach to the washing machine along with your clothes. Be sure to place the bleach directly in the drum of the washing machine, not in the detergent dispenser.
  4. Oxygen-based bleach works best in warm water, but it’s safe to use in cold water as well.
  5. Rinse, and dry your clothes.


  • Oxygen-based bleach is safe for most fabrics, but always check the care label on your clothes to be sure.
  • For extra stain-fighting power, pre-treat stains with a paste made from oxygen-based bleach and water before washing.

Wrapping It Up

Whether you choose to use vinegar, baking soda, borax, or any of the other methods we’ve discussed, the key is to experiment and find what works best for you and your laundry needs. Don’t be afraid to try new things and get creative with your cleaning routine.

By making a few simple changes in your laundry habits, you can reduce your environmental footprint and save money in the process. So go ahead, give these methods a try, and see the difference it can make in your clothes and your life.

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