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This is probably one of the most counter intuitive post ever.  I have a degree in chemistry, therefore, chemical products have always (at least since university) been part of my life.  I know that everything on Earth can be described as “chemical” and it’s the dosage that makes the poison (Paracelse).

However, I have always been fearful of using toxic cleaning products in let’s say microwave or oven.  (please notice the difference here between toxic and chemical)  As time goes by, I realize that surfactants  contained in laundry soap might damage certain clothing, that the bathroom cleanser I use which makes me cough like crazy might do more harm than I thought…

So despite my chemistry degree, I have decided to go green as much as possible, however, I do not want to sacrifice efficiency.  The homemade cleansers use for the most part, baking soda, washing soda, vinegar and borax.  Essential oils can be added, but it’s optional.

Baking soda, Vinegar and Borax can be easily found in Canada.  I purchased Borax at Canadian Tire.  However, Washing Soda is not available, or at least, I haven’t found it, however, based on a simple chemical reaction, we can convert baking soda into washing soda.


The heat will allow us to convert NaHCO3 (baking) into Na2CO3 (washing).  Pour baking soda into a baking sheet, I used a pyrex and place into your over, set at 400F. I left the powder over there for about 1 hour stirring 3 times during the “cooking time” I didn’t find that the difference between baking and washing soda was super noticeable, but the washing soda is much more basic, therefore, you can feel the difference.

Careful when touching the powder or inhaling the dust as the pH is very high.  If you touch the powder and then rinse your fingers, you will feel a soapy texture between your fingers, the pH is so high, it will react with your skin oil to make soap.

This washing soda will be used for my laundry soap recipe.  I give you news!

Recipe for washing soda:

4 cups of baking soda

  • Spread evenly the baking soda, not more than 1 inch thick
  • “Cook” for an hour at 400F
  • Stir every 15 minutes to make sure that the heat is evenly distributed.