Natural homemade fabric softener leaves laundry soft and static free without a chemical film or artificial fragrance. Learn how to make homemade fabric softener dryer sheets. It’s easy and affordable to replace your current fabric softener with a more natural alternative.
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I grew up in a country home with a huge clothes line in the backyard. Laundry time in the spring, summer, and fall meant folding warm, sun-dried laundry infused with the smell of sunshine. Today, like many Americans, I live in a suburban neighborhood with no clothes line but the memory of that ultra-fresh laundry.
For years I tried to mimic the smell with commercial dryer sheets and liquid fabric softeners. Then I glanced at back of my fabric softener bottle and read Biodegradable Fabric Softening Agents (Cationic).
What the heck?
I had no idea what this meant so I did a little digging and what I found out shocked me. This purposely unspecific phrase is used instead of listing the actual harmful chemical ingredients.
The Truth About Fabric Softener
The artificial scents that make laundry smell like mountain streams or fields of flowers contain toxic substances that can harm your health, and pollute the air inside your home.
These indoor air pollutants or VOCs can cause immediate and long term health problems like asthma, hormone disruption, heart disease, cancer, headaches, eye irritation, congestion, and nausea.
How Fabric Softener Works
Commercial fabric softeners leave a slippery film on fabrics that makes it feel soft to the touch. This chemical film makes contact with skin when you wear clothes, sleep on sheets, or dry off with a towel. There are lots of opportunities for your skin to absorb these dangerous chemicals!
Natural Fabric Softeners
I wanted a safer way to soften laundry and found several easy-to-use, natural alternatives:
- Baking soda added to the wash lowers the ph of water in the washing machine. Softening the water helps laundry rinse cleaner and be less stiff. (Baking soda is as an ingredient in my Natural Homemade Laundry Detergent.)
- White vinegar added in the rinse cycle helps to break down the detergent, removes leftover soap residue, and deodorizes the laundry. Add white vinegar during the final rinse cycle (use your fabric softener dispenser or a dispenser ball).
- Wool dryer balls placed in the dryer natural soften and reduce static by bouncing and rubbing against the fabric as it dries.
- Homemade fabric softener & dryer sheets soften laundry in the washer or dryer. This fabric softener uses vinegar to soften and deodorize with a softening boost from vegetable glycerin.
- Glycerin is used in lotions and beauty products to moisturize and soften because it is hygroscopic (absorbs moisture from the air). It is a clear thick liquid that is natural by product of soap making.
- The softener does not use baking soda because it can not be used on dryer sheets and should not be combined with vinegar in homemade cleaners.
Natural Homemade Fabric Softener Recipe
- 2 c. White vinegar
- 2 c. Water
- 1/8 c. Vegetable glycerin
- 10-20 drops Essential oil (optional)
- cotton cloth (for dryer sheets)
Liquid Fabric Softener Directions
- Combine white vinegar, water and glycerin in a glass jar. (To make liquid fabric softener mix together in a vinegar jug, it’s easy to pour into the machine.)
- Add essential oils, if desired, and stir or shake to combine. My favorite homemade laundry scent combinations are:
- Zen Spa – 10 drops eucalyptus, 5 drops lavender
- Floral Dream – 8 drops ylang ylang, 8 drops jasmine
Dryer Sheet Directions
- Add 100% cotton cloths to the fabric softener container. Mine are made from flannel fabric and are approximately 5 x 8 inches. Stitch around the edge to prevent unraveling (this step is cosmetic – you can simply rip up strips of flannel or cotton jersey). Tip – An old 100% cotton t-shirt can be cut up and made into dryer sheets. Make sure it’s 100% cotton.)
How to Use Homemade Fabric Softener
- Liquid Fabric Softener – Add ½ cup to the final rinse cycle. Use fabric softener dispenser or a dispenser ball.
- Fabric Softener Sheets – Remove a fabric sheet from the jar and squeeze so it is not dripping. Add a sheet to the dryer with wet laundry and dry as usual.
More Laundry Softening Tips
- Use dryer balls (reusable) or clean tennis balls to soften laundry and speed drying.
- Try placing a ball of aluminum foil in the dryer to reduce static cling.
- Dry clothes that attract lots of static (synthetic fabrics) until they feel a bit damp then hang to dry completely. This reduces wrinkles and eliminates static cling.
A Note on Natural Laundry Scent
Natural substance cannot not give laundry the huge scent of that come from artificial fragrances made with dangerous chemicals.
To add a gentle, natural scent you can:
- Add Essential Oils – Essential oils are natural and safe to use in laundry.
- EOs used in homemade laundry detergent or liquid fabric softener will scent the laundry room but will mostly wash out with the rinse water.
- EOs used on homemade dryer sheets or wool dryer balls will very lightly scent laundry.
- Spritz with Fabric Refresher – Natural fabric refresher is a safe way to give laundry a stronger natural scent.
- Spray dry laundry while folding.
The bottom line –> truly clean laundry smells like nothing! I use EOs in my fabric softener to mask the scent of vinegar and make doing laundry more pleasurable. If laundry smells bad out of the machine or dryer you have a problem that is easy to solve with this natural odor removing guide.
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Thank you so much for this recipe! I am phasing out fabric softener in my house but loved that Mrs. Myers lemon verbena scent. So I purchased a lemon verbena essential oil and added it to your recipe. Voila!
If others are interested, the lemon verbena oil is from PipingRock and the 2oz bottle is only $5.99
I hope it smells great! I love lemon verbena scent too!
What’s the ‘c’ for in the fabric conditioner recipe? Cups?
Yes, cups (8 fluid ounces in the U.S.)
I have read several articles stating that using white vinegar in the washing machine can damage seals and hoses over time Have you had any issues using this homemade laundry softener?
I have not had a problem with my washer. Adding it directly to the rinse cycle will avoid your seals and hoses until the vinegar is diluted if you are concerned.
Is your recommended dose of 1/2cup of your liquid fabric softener for a standard washer size? Should I double it if I have a larger machine?
I use between 1/2 cup fr a normal load to one cup for an extra capacity load. I have a washer that can hold a ton!
But vinegar will ruin rubber seals causing leaks down the road. No one ever tells ya that part. Its not worth the cost of replacing a machine 3 years into its use!
I’ve been using vinegar as my only fabric softener for 8+ years. I have the same washer and dryer and have not had any repairs made to them.
I’ve been using vinegar as a fabric softener also as well as in lieu of rinse aid in my dishwasher with no problems to my dishwasher
We’re willing to risk paying astronomical doctor bills due to endocrine disrupting chemicals and respiratory illnesses created by chemicals but not willing to take the risk on our much more affordable washers and dryers.. #Merica
Hi Bren! Thank you so much for these fantastic laundry tips! In recent days, I’ve been trying to reduce the chemical load in our home. This led to my friend introducing me to making our own laundry detergent.
The problem I have, is that our water is extremely extremely hard. I love the idea of using only a vinegar rinse, but it just does not soften the clothes well at all when paired with our water. I’m trying the hair conditioner method today, but don’t like the added chemicals.
How well does glycerin work? I’ve been a long time Downy addict and would love to find a natural, safe, and effective softener.
Sending gratitude for such a great post. ♥️
Hello,Reading this blog made me want to try my hand at making my homemade green cleaning products. Something confuses me though.Since essential oils are not water soluble why is it that you use them in some cleaners like the diy fabric softener? is there sth I’m not getting or is there another solution?
Thanks,love your work!!👍
Sissy, the essential oils are not necessary but people in the U.S. love scented laundry supplies so I include some essential oils to add pleasure to the laundry routine. You can definitely leave them out and not change the results.
Hi there! I just wanted to say that your posts are awesome. You have rally done your research and I truly appreciate it!
One question…should my containers be air tight? And plastic or glass tops vs metal right? Cause the metal will rust?
Yes, they should be air tight I have used a mason jar without seeing rust but I generally use glass or plastic (an old vinegar container for example).
We are blessed here in South Africa with beautiful weather all year round. I don’t even own a tumble dryer as we call it here. We only ever sun dry our clothes.
I love using this fabric softener in my dryer with lavender essential oil. I make up a large batch and keep it in an airtight jar with some cotton cloths added to the jar. I just take a cloth out, squeeze any excess liquid from it and throw it in with my load to be dried.
Mary Lynn Jones
Any tips on using vinegar when using a front-loading washer? Can’t open the door during the rinse cycle, unfortunately. 🙁
I add my vinegar to my fabric softener compartment. Make sure you have one that empties completely, not one you fill and it dispenses a small amount in each wash. You do not want the vinegar to sit in the machine for a long time. You can also try a Downey ball filled with vinegar. Good luck!
Do you have to make a new mixture of fabric softener
for each load or can you make a large batch a head of time?
You can make a large batch!
Your suggestions and instructions for fabric softening are wonderful! I have a small technical quibble, though. Opposite to what most of us think, baking soda doesn’t lower pH, it raises pH. Acids are low (lemon juice is around 2), while alkalis are high (baking soda is around 9.5). Human blood is neutral, around 7.
Other than this tiny error, everything else is perfect. Thanks for sharing your wisdom!
Thanks for catching my error, Dave! I write a lot more about pH in my baking soda vs washing soda post.
I would also like to note that the use of any oils added to the dryer, even essential oils, poses a fire risk . I would recommend not using oils in the wash/dry process but rather make a cache for the closet or drawers by dropping EO’s on a cotton bad inside a mesh bag.
Will this get rid of the static?
It helps cut down on static. To help with static in the winter it is best to dry synthetic fabric (like rayon, polyester, nylon, stretch) separate from natural fabrics (like wool, cotton and linen) and do not over dry.
Thanks for your wonderful tips. I have always used vinegar in my wash it is also a great brighter on my whites. Are you on Facebook so we can follow you.
Thanks Michelle! You can find me here: https://www.facebook.com/brendidblog/
Hi Bren. I am wondering if adding oils (which I want to as I feel more natural commercial products don’t leave clothes smelling as nice as I would like) might leave oil stains on clothes as commercial softeners do (which I find impossible to then get out of clothes!). Thanks!
The essential oils are a catch 22, people LOVE their laundry to smell and ask about it all the time. However, most are looking for the huge burst of scent that dangerous chemicals give laundry. Essential oils can add scent to your laundry process/ laundry room and faintly scent laundry but are never going to give the huge scent of manmade chemicals. I use some in my fabric softener to mask the scent of vinegar and make the laundry process more pleasurable. I have never had oil spots on our clothes.
Please avoid using Grapefruit Seed Oil in your wash. I added several drops (it’s antibacterial) mixed with vinegar to the bleach dispenser before starting a load of sheets. It didn’t disperse as it went in and left yellow spots on my sheets. Maybe mixing it with vodka would have been better.
Janet, the grapefruit seed oil needs an emulsifier prior to being added to the wash. Alcohol such as vodka would work well.
When I walk outside and can smell laundry going from other people’s houses it burns my eyes! To me it’s pollution! Hate the laundry aisle in the store, too!!
Jerrilynne Krambeer Specie
Hey Bren, I’m a grandma now and am wondering how these will affect my granddaughter’s skin.
With a new little one I would simply use vinegar as my rinse. No need to use EOs on tender skin!
Would it be safe to use some type of eco friendly/organic sponges? Or should I stick to 100% cotton?
I’ve only tested it with cotton.
What is the purpose of the glycerin in this recipe? Can I leave it out if it’s not in my pantry?
To soften. You can use plain vinegar if desired.
Hi, can I use liquid castile instead of the glycerin? Are they the same thing?
Do not use Castile soap, you do not want soap in the dryer! Vegetable glycerin is not the same as Castile soap. You can omit the glycerin if desired.
Do you just make up new fabric softer for the clothes when the liquid is down enough that it no longer covers the cloths?
This is fabulous! My husband was ironing a shirt and bought a new brand of starch. The minute he sprayed it I started coughing uncontrollably! He had to stop. I have been changing all my cleaning product to natural ones and today I found your blog and it is golden! Thank you.
Thanks so much for the fabric softener dryer sheet recipe! How many cloths should I add to the liquid at one time? Do they soak up all of the liquid, or should the fabric sheets “float” in the liquid? Also, do you find that one works better than the other (using as a liquid in the washer vs. fabric sheets in the dryer)? Thank you!
Janet, you can add as many as you desire so long as they get wet. I used 10 or 15 then pop them back in as they come out of the dryer.
I was just wondering if you can re-use the dryer cloths? If so, how many times would you put it back in the solution to soak for the next time?
Thanks! Looking forward to trying these!
I’ve been using the same set of cloths for years! You can use them to pieces!
I am a massage therapist student and prefer to use products that are organic and hypoallergenic, especially with allergies on the rise, with all the toxins in practically everything. I would never want a client to have a reaction. As I work with massage gels/lotions/oils, will these (detergent and fabric softener recipes) work for my sometimes oil saturated sheets the same or better?
I currently use A&H hypoallergenic and would rather make my own. I always add white vinegar, which has made them so much softer and what seems to be brighter in color.
Luis, I’ve never washed oil saturated sheets but the powdered detergent does take jet fuel out of clothes!
We tried white vinegar and our clothes didn’t soften up including the towels. Any suggestions?
Mateo, I use vinegar in the washing machine rinse cycle and wool dryer balls in the dryer. Have you tried wool balls? Dryer balls.
I’m repurposing some old baby wash cloths and they are 80% cotton and 20% polyester. Will they still work for the dryer sheets?
I would try to stick with 100% cotton as the polyester content will add more static to clothes in the dryer and can also release dangerous fumes. Your baby washcloths would make perfect duster cloths or reusable swifter sweepers (in both of those cleaning situtations a bit a static can help attract dust).
Hi, do the EO’s pose a fire risk when used in the dryer? I’ve been wanting to try your recipe but have read mixed things about this issue.
I haven’t had a problem in my dryer. I can’t promise the same results for everyone! It would depend on how they are used, how much, dryer temp, etc.
Tori @ Everday Wholesome
This is my favorite recipe! thank you! I use this recipe and add it to my fabric softener container. I just use dryer balls and essential oils in the dryer. I haven’t tried fabric dryer sheets in a while!
I just made the fabric softener this week and I am so impressed! My clothes come out soft and clean smelling. My husband and I settled on bergamont oil since it was a clean gender neutral scent. Thanks for posting this recipe!
Bergamont sounds lovely! Glad the recipe was a hit. 🙂
I’ve been wanting to try this out but I have concerns. Is the vegetable glycerine flammable or is there anything in it that could potentially damage the dryer?
Allie, glycerin has an ignition temperature of 400°C, a houshold dryer usually heats to 125 to 135 F. I have had no problems using this mix or plain white vinegar in my dryer and washer. You should do whatever you are comfortable doing!
Hi Bren, thank you for the recipes. I am doing research for my degree which is for natural fabric softener and i will ensure that your name will be in my reference and citation. Wish me luck for my research project.
Have you tried using your scented vinegar in this recipe please? Also, probably being super dense here sorry, but we want water to evaporate when we dry it, so why would something that absorbs water from the air be a good extra ingredient? Keeping water in our skin seems a different concept to water in our washing. Thanks again for all the great recipes and info.
I have not used my scented vinegar in this recipe. I use plain white vinegar. Glycerin “coats” the laundry the way commercial fabric softeners do to make the fabric feel softer. Hope this helps!
What size container do I need for the powdered laundry soap/detergent recipe? I’m excited to make it this week!
I can store a full batch of laundry detergent in an old animal cracker tub that is 10 inches x 8 inches x 8 inches (Costco size). Hope you enjoy the detergent!
I just used this recipe to make my own liquid fabric softener – washing clothes now and excited to see how it works out. (Well, as excited as I can be about laundry…). Thanks for the info!
Thanks, Leah. Hope you like the results!
No tennis balls in the dryer! They’re full of plastic and chemicals, combined with the heat of the dryer, will leach into your clothes.
EO’s will wash out in the wash, and neutralize in the heat of the dryer. Use your EO’s to make a body spritz for yourself, so the scent is applied right when you really want it. Kids love to have their own spritzes, too!
You could also hang DIY natural sachets in the closet, or put in drawers (ex: mesh cloth, dried lavender buds, sprinkled with EO’s of choice).
Thanks for the tips. Alli.
If you use dryer balls, clip a couple of safety pins in each one. It discharges the static in the same manner as the ball of tin foil. Don’t use tennis balls, they’re full of synthetics that will leach into your clothes.
Could you post the cost per load please?
Steph, the cost per load depends on the essential oils you use and if you use it in the dryer or washer. The glycerin is about $0.75 a batch, the vinegar is about $0.34 a batch, and the EOs are about $0.20 (using eucalyptus and lavendar) that $1.29 a batch. I use it in the washer which is about 9-10 loads per batch or $0.13 a load. Using dryer sheets makes the solution last much longer so the cost per load would be lower.
New DIY-er here 🙂 I’m sure this is a silly, common sense question, but why must the fabric used for the dryer sheets be 100% cotton? I’ve an old pair of hole-y denim jeans (75% cotton, plus polyester and a smidge of spandex) I’ve been wanting to reuse/upcycle and wasn’t sure why exactly they wouldn’t be appropriate.
Hey Kris! I used 100% cotton for a few reasons: 1) vinegar can break down synthetic fibers, 2) synthetic fibers can make your laundry more static filled, 3) synthetic fibers can melt in the heat of the dryer releasing fumes you wouldn’t want to inhale.
Hey! So happy I found your pin on Pinterest (just signed up for your newsletter as well). Can’t wait to try the fabric softener, and homemade detergent as well. I’ve made my own detergent in the past but have not in more than two years and want to get back to this. I love how you tested the ingredients as well. Last time, I used the standard borax recipe. Thanks so much!
I’m so glad you found the site, Mara! Hope you enjoy the recipes. -Bren 😉
Wow! This one really works well. My husband is very reactive to perfumes and I haven’t been able to use fabric softener for a few years now. I really missed it, but he would break out in a rash if I used commercial fabric softener. I finally have good smelling clothes and my husband is feeling fine. 🙂 Thank you SO MUCH for this!!! My clothes smell so fresh (I use orange essential oil)!!!
I’m so glad it works for you, Nancy! Do you use it as cloths or in the washing machine?
I use both (fabric softener for the wash and the cloths for the dryer). .
I also just started making your homemade powdered laundry detergent and love it.
I’m so thankful to have found you. Your recipes are great and I feel good using clean and non toxic products.
Can I use apple cider vinegar??
I’ve never used apple cider vinegar so I’m not sure how it would work.
How many loads do you usually get out of one batch of the fabric softener?
It depends if it is used as a liquid added to the washer or as dryer cloths. As dryer cloths I get 30-40 loads, as a liquid fabric softener in the wash I get 8-10 loads.
Thank you very much for recipes and tips. Can I leave the oxyclean out of this recipe?
Luciana, there is no Oxyclean in the fabric softener…. are you thinking of the DIY laundry detergent?
How long should the cotton cloths soak before adding to the wash? Also, how often should the fabric softener mixture that the cotton cloths are added to be changed out?
I’ve heard that a balled up piece of aluminum foil will cut down on static if that’s a big issue for any of your readers. ????
Thanks, Toby! I’ve heard this works great too.
Yes, Toby. Aluminum foil ball works very well to remove static. I use it all the time.
Thanks for sharing your experience!
Wow, I just did something I almost never do….I just subscribed to your newsletter. I have been scouring Pinterest for natural diy recipes to rid my home of toxins. All of your recipes look great, and you back up your ingredient choices with solid information as to WHY you are using them, and WHY they work. Thank you for that! It is so difficult to sort all of that out on Pinterest. I also wanted to add that it is such a shame that we’ve been brought up to associate the smell of “clean” with toxic, chemical fragrances instead of smelling NOTHING, which is what “clean” actually smells like. We need to retrain ourselves and our children to apprecite more natural smells (such as essential oils!) as appealing instead of the harsh, overpowering commercial scents. This is a total overhaul for my family and I’m glad that I have a new partner to help me tackle this endeavor! Thank you so much for all of your hard work and sharing your wonderful resources with us!
Thanks for the kind words, Erika! I am so happy that you found the blog. I agree, it takes some time to retrain yourself (and others) to the real smell of clean. Let me know if you have questions, I’m so glad you are here.
Hi, I’m wondering if you used distilled white vinegar or white cleaning vinegar for the recipe?
Either one will work, Sarah. I use whichever I have on hand. Usually just regular strength. (Regular white vinegar is 5% acidity and cleaning vinegar is 6% acidity.)
I used iin the rinse cycle once & hung the clothes out to dry on the clothes line & they faded. Will this softener cause the clothes to fade if hung out on the line?
Christine, I’m sorry you had fading. There is nothing in the softener that should cause fading unless you used a citrus essential oil and it did not rinse out well. What type of oil did you use?
I’m wondering if anyone has any experience using these dryer sheets when also using homemade detergent…the recipes I am looking at include baking soda, and this includes vinegar! That seems like a bad idea…
Hope, I use this fabric softener with my homemade laundry detergent. The baking soda is gone before you use the vinegar so there is no problem with interactions.
For the room or clothes spray can you use rubbing alcohol in place of vodka?
I prefer to use vodka instead of rubbing alcohol because vodka is simply water and ethanol. Rubbing alcohol is ethanol, water, acetone, methyl isobutyl ketone, flavoring to make it taste bad and/or artificial coloring and artificial fragrance. I prefer to avoid the additives in rubbing alcohol, especially the artificial fragrance. Plus rubbing alcohol smells bad when sprayed and the vodka is almost odorless allowing the essential oils to be smelled. You can definitely try the rubbing alcohol, but you might not be entirely happy with the results. -Bren
Is there a certain brand of vodka u use!
When cleaning I use whatever is cheapest. Right now I am using the Costco store brand.
Curious, on the powder/dry laundry soap,how much is to be added for a regular load and an over sized load. I read through and did not see a reference to this. If I missed it-sorry. Thank you
The Natural Homemade Laundry Detergent uses 1-2 Tbsp per load. I usually use 1 Tbsp, 2 once in a while only for very large or very dirty loads.
Could this be used as a hair conditioner as well?
I have never tried it as a hair conditioner. The contents would not harm you (unless you got it in your eyes), but it act like more of a rinse aid to help wash out the shampoo.
I’m new to doing eco friendly cleaners..how long can we store your fabcon and liquid detergent recipes?
They can be stored for quite some time! I have batches sitting around for 3-6 months with no problem. Make sure to discard if the scent changes or you notice any growth, this is a sign the mixture has gone bad.
Can the dryer sheets be used more than once?
Yes! I just pop them back in the jar of mix when they come out of the dryer.
Is the detergent and softener safe for use in HE machines?
Both are low foaming and can be use in a HE machine. I use them in my HE washer. You can read more in my Natural Homemade Laundry Detergent Question and Answer.
Just came across your site and will be trying your homemade laundry detergent. Where did you purchase the jars in the picture?
I get the jars at Ikea or World Market. You can read more in my Homemade Laundry Detergent Q & A.
My husband swears he can still smell the vinegar on the clothes. Sometimes I think he is right. The smell seems stronger on some clothes, others I smell nothing at all. could I be doing something wrong? Perhaps using too much? Or am I just letting him get into my head? lol
Are you using the fabric softener in the rinse or in the dryer? You should not be able to smell it at all. Sometimes the more natural scent takes getting used to… especially if you have been using commercial softeners. You can try using less in the dryer or use it in the wash rinse cycle.
Why choose Now veg glycerin? On Amazon there were a few others you get way more product for your money. Have you tried any of those?
Heidi, any vegetable glycerin will work. I’ve used Now products for a few years and have always had great luck with their quality. I only suggest products I have personally used, but few free to try others.
Thank you for the quick reply. I’ve been searching for it and have been unable to find it in local stores. I plan to order some but want to start using this recipe ASAP. What is the purpose of the glycerin? Sorry if that’s a silly question, I’m still learning about all the unhealthy chemical we put in and on our bodies.
The glycerin gives it a bit extra softening power. Vinegar also makes a great fabric softener so together they have a double punch.
Can this be made without the glycerin? Thanks
Yes, you can leave out the glycerin.
Great idea! Totally gonna try this! Cotton washcloths would work ok as well?
Cotton washcloths would work great! If you’re using new ones I would try a light color or white ones to prevent color bleed.
I followed your recipe exactly and used the fabric softener as a liquid.as I do not machine dry my clothes. I was quite disappointed as my clothes came out a lot less soft and much more wrinkled than if I used nothing at all. I wonder what I was doing wrong.
I am not sure,Brandy. I machine dry my clothes. Perhaps you should try less product? This will not make your laundry as soft as commercial softeners that coat laundry in slippery chemicals.
Just wondering, I’m not that up to it with all natural cleaners. Why is yours borax free? I have recently discovered uses for borax, and thought it was a laundry booster! Help me if I’m incorrect! Thanks
Good question, Lori. Borax is actually controversial in green cleaning circles. You can read more about it at MNN. Since it is most dangerous when ingested (it can kill bugs) I leave it out of my dishwasher detergent where residue could be left behind on dishes. The detergent works well without it and the risk is removed.
I know this has nothing to do with the precious statement. But, is it hard to find the ingredients for the laundry detergent and fabric softener? Will I need to look for an all natural store or ???? I’d like to make and use them, if I can obtain the ingredients. I live between New Orleans, LA and Houma, LA. Houma is a lot easier for me to go shopping. Nee Orleans is somewhat of a challenge. Please advise.
The ingredients are not hard to find. I buy all my ingredients at a big box store (Target, WalMart, etc) or online. I usually get the Kirk’s soap and essential oils online.
Do these dryer sheets actually cut back on static? I stopped using dryer sheets a few months ago and started using dryer balls, but still battle static cling. I wish I could hang things outside too, we have no clothes line and too many birds! LOL I enjoy the birds though and won’t complain too much about the dirty mess they make on our deck and walks!
Chris, these will help with static but not eliminate it completely if you are drying synthetic fabrics. I try to dry those until barely dry or use wool dryer balls. Over drying synthetics does make a static mess. Hope this helps!
when using these as dryer sheets do you wrong them out first or use them saturated?
I meant wring out the liquid
Yes, I wring them out somewhat… Just so they don’t drop across my floor!
Thank you. I just made these and was wanting to try them out!!
I like the idea of being more aware of what is in our products. I think that’s one of the biggest benefits of home making this. As mentioned, there can be some pretty disturbing ingredients that get put into softeners and detergents. I like the essential oils idea. That’s a great way to add some scent. I think I’m going to use this as a gift! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks Felice! I agree, I love making homemade items to control ingredients.
What an odd rule! Obviously those who made that rule have never slept in sheets dried by the sun- they smell so good! Plus, dryers are so bad for the environmenot, probably as bad as the chemicals were all trying to replace. We have relatives in the US and they think I’m a “hippy” for avoiding the dryer 😉
Hi! I’m Australian and we dry clothes outdoors in the sun 99 out of 100 times. Even when I use he dryer (which is maybe six times a year and just to finish off towels if they aren’t dry properly) I never use a dryer sheet. On rainy days we hang clothes indoors on a “clothes horse” near the fire or in a well ventilated room. It’s totally worth trying to go without any softeners if you’re up for the challenge!
I love drying clothes outdoors,Molly! I grew up doing laundry this way too (my parents live in the country). Unfortunately, in our suburban neighborhood clotheslines aren’t allowed. It’s probably an American homeowners association issue. I dry lots of things on an indoor drying rack but do use my dryer often. I wish I could have a clothesline for energy savings too! Thanks for the great tip!
Do these sheets actually leave your clothes scented when they come out of the dryer? No matter what I do, I can’t get my clothes to be scented. I’ve added a ton of EO’s to the powdered soap recipe AND also to the vinegar rinse. The clothes comes out smelling clean, but not scented. I’ve also added drops of EO to my wool dryer balls, and again, they come out smelling like nothing. Also, the vegetable glyceryn won’t leave any residue behind on the clothes? Oh, and do you just keep reusing the mixture until it runs out?
Allie, they will have a very light scent but they will not smell like chemically scented laundry. Unfortunately chemical, man made scents are much stronger than natural scents. I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that less scented is actually better for your health. Now, after several years of using all natural laundry supplies, I can’t stand the heavily scented commercial laundry products! You could spritz your dry laundry with my natural fabric refresher if you want to add scent after drying or in the last few minutes of your dry cycle. No, The small amount of glycerine does not leave a residue. Yes, I keep using the mixture until it runs out. I also sometimes add it to my washer’s fabric softener dispenser. Hope this helps! Bren
Thanks for responding. I agree, the smell of store bought detergent and fabric sheets makes me gag now. Everyone at home thinks I’m crazy. I’m going to try these sheets today, I bought some cute flannel fabric yesterday (gotta be stylish!). Two more questions: how many sheets do you use in one load? What’s the purpose of the water? I’ve seen other similar recipes without water.
Allie, I use one or two sheets per load (one for smaller loads, two for big loads). I use water to dilute the mix because I don’t like to place a square of flannel saturated with pure vinegar, glycerine and essential oil on top of my clean clothes in the dryer (just my personal preference). If you are using the mix in the washing machine’s fabric softener dispenser you should be fine adding no water (since it’s mixed with water in the machine). That’s one thing I love about DIY, you can test it out yourself and see how you like it! LOL. You might try making the mix sans water and dry one load with a flannel saturated in the non-water mix (I would recommend testing this on something sturdy like towels or sheets not your fine washables). If you like it, you’re good if not, try adding water. Hope this helps! Bren
Is this formula HE safe?
I use it in my HE washing machine.
Hi! Can you please tell me why the glycerin is needed.
I use it to soften the fabric. Commercial softners leave a coating on the fabric that makes it feel soft. I use glycerin instead. You can also use plain white vinegar, the choice is yours! 🙂