How to Make Natural and Environmentally Friendly Laundry Detergent

How to Make Natural and Environmentally Friendly Laundry Detergent

Fall is a wonderful time.
When the sunshine warms our hearts and the leaves change their colours, we love to be outside and harvest what Mother Earth is offering to us during that season.
Apart from picking apples and quinces, it's also the time of the year for collecting chestnuts - these little red-brownish fruits with its smooth surface.

Here in the village, the front yards and streets are full of chestnut trees.
So, each day after picking up our little son from kindergarten, we ride the bicycle to this place and fill up our bags.

Some of it we use for handicrafts and the main part for washing.

On request by many of you to share how we wash our laundry, I would like to take up the topic here again.

Chestnuts contain saponins, which are soap-like substances.
By cutting them and adding them to water, you get an excellent washing solution.

It comes completely without any toxic chemicals, it is sustainable, environmentally friendly, regional and doesn't even cost any money.
Oh yes, not to forget the fun factor you experience by collecting the chestnuts 😀.

We always collect as many chestnuts as we need until the next season.
It is best to pick them in sunny weather, because they must be properly dry for the winter, otherwise they start to mold.
We fill them in a mesh bag, hang them in a sunny place for another few days - so they are completely dry for storage.

Chestnuts become very hard over time.
We cut them with a large, very sharp knife.
If you want to have it a little easier, you can cut the chestnuts right away after picking, then they are still soft und cutting is much easier.


Washing with chestnuts:

You need:

  • 8 chestnuts
  • 300ml of water
  • a sharp knife
  • 1 glass

  • Do you want to give your laundry a fresh smell? Simply add some drops of lavender oil or scent of your choice.

This is how you do it:

Cut the chestnuts the day before washing your laundry, place the pieces in a glass and fill it up with water.
The next morning, pour the liquid through a sieve and ready is your detergent.


The detergent has a shelf life of two days. After that, it doesn't look and smell so nice anymore.
We always prepare it the day before, so it's fresh.

You can also use this detergent for other cleaning jobs in your household.
Fill it in a spray bottle and off you go.


In a home with three kids there are sometimes unforeseeable circumstances which require us to wash the laundry right away.
In this case we use ivy leaves.
Ivy also contains saponins, which have a great cleansing effect.
It's super fast and ivy is available all year round.

Washing with ivy:

You need:

  • 8 large ivy leaves
  • 1 mesh bag

This is how you do it:

Simply put the mesh bag into the washing machine and off you go.


We hope you got a little inspired and also want to try this natural laundry detergent.

Do you also use natural ways to wash your laundry?
We love to hear from you!

Enjoy the golden fall and have fun collecting!

Love Jana and Family


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