A thrifty mum makes her own laundry detergent using conkers – and saves up to £60 a month. Kara Woodhouse, 29, shared the tip on social media and says that anyone with access to a horse chestnut tree can save money on their washing powder.
The mum-of-two collects the conkers from September to December, which she uses to make laundry detergent throughout the year.
Kara, who lives in Cambridge, would normal approximately spend £30 every two weeks on washing products which means she saves up to £60 a month.
A video shows Kara and her children Loui, four, and Connie, three, all getting involved in the production of the washing powder.
The key ingredient in the conkers is saponins – a cleansing chemical used by the horse chestnut seed to deter pesky insects.
Kara said: “I saw a video last year about how conkers hold saponins like washing detergent, so I looked into Google to see how it worked.”
To make the detergent, the stay-at-home mum bashes the conkers with a hammer and put them in a glass jar that she fills with boiling water.
After she let it rest for 30 minutes, she strains the liquid out into another jar and store in the fridge until needed.
Kara was inspired to make her own natural detergent after her son Loui, who suffers from eczema, reacted badly to store-bought options.
She said: “My son has bad eczema so I would normally use washing detergent aimed for babies.
“But when I saw the conkers thing, I thought well it’s natural so it’s worth a try and thankfully it helped a lot.”