Homemade laundry detergent can be enhanced with essential oils. While many different types of oils can be added, they do nothing to enhance cleaning the laundry.
Using essential oils in laundry detergent involves adding roughly 20 to 25 drops of the preferred scent after adding borax to the detergent but before mixing. Essential oils are expensive when compared to other ingredients typically used in homemade laundry soaps. If they are left out, the laundry soap can clean the clothes. Depending on the oil chosen, the price can vary greatly per load.
Purex Crystals can be used in place of essential oils to add scent and softener to homemade laundry detergent. Each load of laundry with these crystals costs about $1.99 as of 2015. Homemade laundry detergent without any enhancer runs about $1.76 per load.