Lavender essential oil is known for its skin healing properties along with being antibacterial and antimicrobial. Using lavender oil can help with lifting mood and winter blues.
To make a dry laundry soap, mix the grated soap, borax, washing soda, TSP and essential oil together well. Store the laundry soap in a reused detergent pail.
To make a liquid soap, you will need a large plastic pail and lid that can take 6L of liquid. Bring 1L of water to a simmer. Add the grated soap. Use homemade soap, soap flakes or grate any commercial bar soap. Stir constantly until soap melts into the water. Add borax, washing soda and TSP. Continue stirring until the powders dissolve. Remove from heat and slowly add the extra 5L of water. Add the lavender essential oil. Over the next few hours stir the mixture in the pail. The liquid soap will gel overnight. Use 1/2c for each load. You can scoop out the gel with your hand or have a cup in the pail. This laundry soap will leave your clothes smelling fresh and clean. This laundry soap is incredibly inexpensive and good for the environment. You might want to work out the cost of this laundry soap and compare the cost to your favorite industrial detergent.
If needed, try using 1/2c white vinegar in your washing machine as a fabric softener.
For more recipes please see Healthy Household: Staying Clean Safely and Saving Money.
Updated April 10, 2015: Adding 1/2c trisodium phosphate (TSP) to the above recipe will help make your clothing come clean and smell fresher. To learn more about how TSP works with soap please see Healthy Household: Wicked Laundry Soap.