Thursday, November 29, 2012

Make Your Own Fabric Softener

Who actually knows what is in fabric softener or those dryer sheets?  Sure they make our clothes smell nice and reduce the dreaded static cling, but that pesky "fragrance" or "perfume" can contain a slew of chemicals that the industry may or may not even know if they are safe for our health.  And then those chemicals are in our clothes, and against our skin (!!!), for hours...being absorbed into our bodies.  So, here is a recipe that I have been using for over a year now.  And you can even make it smell pretty depending on the essential oils you choose to use :-).  And the ingredients are edible (maybe not the essential oils so much) - can you eat your fabric softener???

1 cup baking soda
6 cups white vinegar
8 cups water
10-15 drops essential (I use tea tree, but lavender or whatever you like best works just as well!)

Basically, mix all ingredients in a large bowl or bucket.  I like to mix the baking soda and water first and stir until most of the baking soda dissolves.

Once you add the vinegar, it gets very bubbly as it reacts with the baking soda.  So don't make the mistake I did the first time and mix in a leftover vinegar bottle and attempt to shake instead of me, it gets messy!

bubbles, bubbles, bubbles!

Once it is all mixed up, then it is safe to use a funnel and store it in old vinegar bottles.  Use it just as you would fabric softener you buy at the store.  And no need for dryer sheets!!  With the exception of fleece, I do not have issues with static causing my clothes to stick together.

Now if this recipes is a little bit too much work for your busy schedule, you can also use straight-up white vinegar.  Don't worry, your clothes won't smell like vinegar - once it's dried, vinegar loses its smell...but, you won't get the pretty scent like you would with the essential oils.  Oh yeah, and it's super cheap! Bonus feature!


  1. excellent meg....i love telling people about the hazards in their home. I hang dry my clothes inside. but if I used it, i'd use your recipe!

  2. Love the recipe! I have seen on Pintrest soaking a wash cloth in a fabric softner solution and letting it air dry and then reusing it a bunch of times as a dryer sheet. Any thoughts? I've never use fabric softner in the washer.... do you really notice a difference?