Coconut Oil Laundry Soap

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Jul 16, 2014
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I am thinking of making 100% CO oil 0% superfat bar soap to clean my delicates.

Would that be ok, and does anyone add borax at trace to the soap to soften the water. I have hard water as my place.
So you add it later but not to the soap.

Yes I would like to know if this is ok for delicates like wool and silks.
Yes, I think 100% coconut oil soap with no superfat would be good for laundry if your water is not really, really hard. Ours is and cp or liquid soap does not work well for laundry or dishes. You can always add borax to the load in your washing machine . Washing soda is also a good additive.
I make a 100% coconut oil soap with 0% superfat for laundry soap, then the next day grate it and mix it with borax, washing soda, baking soda, and oxyclean (or equivalent brand) to make my own homemade laundry soap. There are lots of recipes out there for the ratios of the soap to the other additives and what they do. I've been using this for a few years now and haven't had any issues with my laundry. And I have an HE frontloader. I also use a bar of the 100% coconut oil as a stain stick for really stubborn stains.
I mix my grated 100% CO 0% SF soap 2:1 or 3:1 by volume with both borax and washing soda. Works peachy in my HE washer and for hand washing too. Oh and on woolens and down comforter as well. If I had delicates I wouldnt hesitate to try it :)
I normally buy 4 bars of the yellow stain bars at the supermarket. It's very cheap. 500g for $2 or something. It's harsh on my hands and clothes though.

But there is a joy in making your own soap with natural ingredients and putting in what you know is in there.
I will make it with - 0.5% superfat and add some essential oils and maybe a dash of turpentine. I cannot stand the smell of coconut and can't risk having even a drop of unsponafied coconut oil left. And I will add some borax to being down the PH.
I could be wrong, but i think if you add borax to the bar soap batter, you will not lower the pH so much as up the superfat. And I think that reaction looses you the water softening abilities of the borax. Like I said, I could be wrong, but that's why I add the borax to the grated soap after it cures. I've never noticed the coconut smell sticking in soap, if it did people wouldn't spend so much on coconut FO I think :)
You're not wrong - people use borax in liquid soap making when they use the older method of making a lye-heavy soap and adding borax to counter it at the end.

Borax is a controlled substance over here so I just use co soap grated up, washing soda and baking powder, with some eo. I've also started adding a little bit of citric acid in to the rinse section
This will be my first official post on here!

I've made a number of laundry soaps, both CP and liquid. IMO, coconut alone can be a little harsh for delicates (in fact, I've moved away from coconut only for ALL of my laundry soaps). My favorite is either 75/25 or 70/30 coconut and lard with 0% SF. If you are washing in cold, you will probably need to pre-dissolve the soap. I do not use borax (makes me itchy), but I like using Calgon's water softener and washing soda. You can pre-mix the soap and washing soda, then add the water softener to the load.
Oh I see, thank you for the response.

What else can I use instead of lard to cut down the coconut oil. I am only using this laundry soap for delicates.
You could use palm. If you don't want to buy a lot, grab a container of Spectrum Shortening, which is 100% palm. I suppose you could use several options, but you wouldn't want anything with a high level of unsapponifables, which could leave oily spots.

Or just use 100% coconut and use a very dilute mix.
Also be very careful when washing woolens. The higher pH will raise the scales on them and make them more prone to felting. Deliberate attempts to felt take advantage of this, but you don't want to ruin your favorite sweater with too much agitation!
So you add it later but not to the soap.

Yes I would like to know if this is ok for delicates like wool and silks.

If the woolens and silks are valuable to you I suggest you get some professional advice on what to wash them with. Silk is a protein, and I suspect wool is as well.
(It's been a long time since I've washed either, so I've forgotten the advice I got. I do remember I was surprised by what I learned, and Woolite wasn't the correct item for all delicates!)

CP soap is high in pH - that may have an affect on those items. Also, coconut soap will make a lot of lather and I do remember with certainty that agitation and lots of rinsing are harsh on silk and cause it to shrink.

Again, finding a true fabric expert for advice would be beneficial to you.
My soap cleanses quite well for delicates I think most suppliers cut it with about 20 to 30 Palm oil or vegetable oil.

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