I am a perfectionist about many areas of my life.
Laundry is not one of those areas…
I know a lot of gals are super fastidious with their laundry habits– always separating lights and darks, always folding right out of the dryer, always ironing their sheets, and never, EVER leaving a load too long in the washer. *cough*
I don’t have a lot of “fancy” clothes, so I generally just wash everything together, and I usually use my homemade detergent. (Or sometimes I do like to use Biokleen Laundry Detergent— I’ve had good results with it.) During the warmer months, I prefer to hang items outside to dry- either on my clothesline or drying rack.
For the longest time I never pre-treated stains– which resulted in a lot of, er, “spotted” clothes.
Thankfully, I started using this homemade spot treatment, and it has worked wonders (especially with a messy preschooler…). You can whip up a batch yourself with natural ingredients and you’ll never have to buy spot-removers at the store again.
Homemade Laundry Stain & Spot Remover
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 cup liquid castile soap (buy castile soap on Amazon (affiliate link))
- 1/4 cup liquid vegetable glycerin (buy vegetable glycerin on Amazon (affiliate link))
- 5-10 drops of lemon essential oil (These are my favorite essential oils)
- Glass spray bottle OR plastic squeeze-type bottle
Mix all ingredients together.
If using the essential oil, store the mixture in a glass container since lemon oil can disintegrate plastics. If you omit the essential oil, it can then be stored in a repurposed plastic bottle with a lid that allows you to squirt it out.
To use, shake well and apply liberally to spots and stains. Lightly rub the mixture into the fabric with your fingertips.
As with most spot removers, this one works best if you treat the spot immediately and allow it to soak before tossing it into the washing machine. Sometimes I’ll even allow the item to soak overnight before washing it.
I haven’t had as good results if the stain has already been washed first– but you can still give it a try.
I haven’t had any issues with this mixture discoloring clothing, but if you are concerned about that, I would definitely test it in an inconspicuous area.
- I get my small glass spray bottles from AromaTools or my local health food store.
- If you don’t have liquid castile soap, you can use liquid dish soap instead. I’ve used the “blue stuff” in the past with good results. You’ll just want to stick to a higher-quality brand, since the cheaper ones are usually watered down.
Laundry isn’t the only area of my home where I use essential oils— I put them to work on a daily basis for all sorts of things: cleaning, life’s little emergencies, in the barnyard, and a whole lot more. You can get all the details for FREE in my eBook, The Essential Homestead.