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I tried the homemade Laundry Soap.....

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Suds don't make your clothes clean -- that's just a marketing gimmick by the big companies.


I don't recommend the use of Fels Naptha - it's loaded with perfume. Better to use homemade soap that is superfatted, along with the washing soda and borax. I find this to be much cheaper than any detergent available on the market.


I believe the "fruit" in the muslin bag was a reference to soap nuts. They are awesome and do an incredible job cleaning -- and they're not just for laundry. You can use them for any cleaning, including your body and hair. They're only about $10 a lb and will last you at least 6 months. They are especially wonderful for anyone with allergies or sensitive skin.

Edited by edensong
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If soap nuts contain only saponin, why buy them when you can pick 'bouncing bet' aka 'soapwort' a prolific weed that also contains saponin. It was used to wash unmentionables in the 'old days'. I think I'll try some when it comes up this year and report back. Supposedly you boiled it in a little water to get the 'soap' out then added the strained liquid to wash water....

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Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis) is a vespertine flower, and a common perennial plant from the carnation family (Caryophyllaceae). Other common names are Bouncing Bet and Sweet William.


The Latin name is derived from the toxic substance saponin, contained in the roots. It starts producing lather when in contact with water. The epithet officinalis indicates its medicinal functions. However, it acquired its common name through utility in cleaning.


In traditional medicine, the roots are used to treat certain skin diseases. The leaves are rich in natural surfactants, which form a natural lather that is ideal for cleansing the skin. Soapwort extracts are also used in cleansers, make-up removers, and shampoos.


Soapwart Shampoo Recipe

By: Pioneer Thinking


Suitable for all hair types. Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis) contains saponins, which is similar to soap. It lathers when agitated.

Lemon Verbena for a citrus fragrance and catnip to promote healthy hair growth.


The Ingredients


* 2 cups distilled water

* 1 1/2 tablespoons dried soapwort root (chopped) (most health food stores would carry this)

* 2 teaspoons Lemon Verbena or 2 teaspoons Catnip


The Instructions


Bring water to a boil add soapwort and simmer, cover for about 20 minutes. Remove from heat, add herb then allow mixture to cool. Strain the mixture keeping the liquid. Pour into a bottle. Makes enough for 6-7 shampoos. Must be used within 8-10 days. Store in a cool dark place.


There are several plants that are actually used as soaps: soapwort (or bouncing bet), yucca root, pokeweed root, or buckeyes (or horse chestnut) are some of the more common in the USA. Dry the plant, pods, or roots out chop up into small pieces, then place with water in a bottle and shake. It is only a liquid soap. Soapwort is used to clean delicate old fiber in museums.

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