Whew! Your laundry is finally done - but is it really? The moment you pare down laundry mountain, it starts to build again. Such is the nature of dirty clothes. Until the Laundry9000 robot comes out, it's up to you to do it on your own. If only there was a way to hack your laundry.
Great news! There is. You have many laundry hacks available to make the task easier, more efficient, and quicker. Picking up a few laundry tips can help you shave some time off the chore that never ends. From how to dry clothes faster, to minimizing wrinkles, to DIY stain fighters, there's a laundry trick for just about everything.
Roll Wet Clothes in a Towel to Remove Moisture
When you hand wash your clothes, they take forever to dry unless you get a lot of water out of them. Since you're dealing with delicates, you don't want to just wring them out. While other laundry hacks might tell you to try a salad spinner, it's a little harsh on your delicates. Instead, grab your fluffiest towel.
- Lay the towel flat.
- Put the garment or garments on the towel.
- Roll it up tight.
- Grab the ends and gently smack a few of your frustrations out by hitting the towel against something like your countertop.
- Unroll and hang to dry.
No drips, and it's not going to hurt your delicates. Win!
Use Aluminum Foil for Dryer Sheets
Are you all out of dryer sheets? Do you have aluminum foil? Problem solved.
- Rip off three sheets of aluminum foil, about the size of a piece of paper.
- Wad them into a ball.
- Throw them in the dryer.
Voila! You have static-free laundry and nothing clogging up your lint trap.
Clean Your Washer for Cleaner Laundry
Your washer does a lot of heavy lifting in your home. And if you have a large family, it's a LOT of heavy lifting. So, if you notice your clothes aren't as clean, your washer is probably the culprit. It's important to clean your washer once every few weeks to keep it and your clothes clean.
Strip Clothes to Avoid Build Up
Detergent builds up in your clothes. So, if you start to notice that your shirts or towels are coming out of the dryer a little "crusty," try stripping them. Stripping laundry pulls out all the buildup, odors, and grime to make your towels and clothes feel like a dream again.
Hang Dirty Laundry to Avoid Wrinkles
Sometimes wrinkles aren't a big deal, like in your kiddo's jeans. But you don't want wrinkles in your work shirts and slacks. If you just throw them in the hamper when they're dirty, you are going to wrinkle them. Instead, create a place in your closet for dirty clothing. Hang them up until you are ready to wash them. Boom! No added wrinkles.
Keep a Fels Naptha Bar on Hand for Grass Stains
Grass stains are the worst. You scrub, fight, and maybe even cry a little, but at the end of the day, those green marks are still there mocking you. Don't give grass stains a chance. Keep a Fels Naptha bar on hand in your laundry room. The minute you see that little green smudge, wet the bar and rub it over the stain. Let it sit for about an hour or so, and throw it in the wash. You'll be amazed at how well it works on stains like grass and blood.
Use a Mesh Bag to Organize Socks
Socks are the bane of any cleaner's existence, especially those little baby socks. How are you possibly supposed to keep them from disappearing? A mesh bag! Keep a mesh bag in all your laundry bins for socks. You can just throw them in the wash. No lost socks.
Dry Laundry Quicker With a Towel
You woke up late, and you forgot to put your clothes in the dryer last night. If you can't wait for the full drying cycle, you might want to grab a clean, white towel. Throw it in with your clothes to help them to dry faster. You'll be amazed at how quickly they dry.
Remove Wrinkles With Ice
So, you forgot about your laundry in the washer. You now have a wrinkled mess. Save yourself some ironing time by grabbing an ice cube from the freezer. Throw it in the dryer with your clothes to create steam. See you later, wrinkles.
Make Your Own Laundry Detergent to Save Money
You don't have to buy laundry detergent. You can actually make your own with a little borax, washing soda, and Castille soap. The batch is huge, and you save a lot of money. Whether you like liquid or dry, you're covered.
Roll Clothes to Save Space
Clothes can take up a lot of space in your drawers. You need to conserve space if you have a small closet or dresser. Try rolling your shirts and pants. You'll find you can fit a lot more in the drawers and see what you are working with since they aren't all stacked on top of each other.
File Fold Shirts to See What's Available
Have you ever gone into your closet to find your favorite t-shirt and completely ruined your drawer organization, only to find it was on top of your dresser? Try file folding t-shirts. This way, you can see whether your favorite is there or not with just a glance. You can even use bookshelf ends to help make sure your files stay in the upright position by sliding them in as you take shirts out.
Save a Shrunken Sweater With Baby Shampoo
So, you shrunk your sweater. Not like it-will-fit-my-toddler-shrunk it, but it definitely is showing off a little midriff. Baby shampoo might be your saving grace.
- Fill a tub or sink with cold water.
- Add a capful of baby shampoo.
- Allow the sweater to soak for 30-60 minutes to loosen those shrunken fibers.
- Rinse and use the towel hack to wring out the water.
- Now gently stretch it back into its original shape.
- Air dry.
Use Blue Jeans to Whiten Clothes
Whites get dingy after a while. Depending on the chemicals in your water, they can get really dingy. Bring them back to life with some new blue jeans if you have them available. Throw your whites in with the blue jeans. The leaking dye will help to cancel out the yellow. You can also buy a laundry bluing product if you don't have any new blue jeans.
Make DIY Fabric Softener With White Vinegar
You don't need fabric softener. Hard to believe, right? Well, you don't. Add a ¼ cup of white vinegar to the fabric softener dispenser, and you'll have soft clothes with zero chemicals. It prevents static and makes your clothes oh-so soft.
Use a Pool Noodle for Creases
Air drying can be great for your clothes, but the creases left behind from the bars or clotheslines aren't quite as great. If you aren't into the whole ironing thing, you can save yourself the hassle with a pool noodle.
- Slice down the center of the pool noodle lengthwise
- Put it over the bar or line.
- No more creases.
Freeze Clothes to De-stink and Remove Sticky Stuff
You know you don't wash your jeans after every wear. That's what keeps them fitting like a glove. But what do you do if you pull them out and notice a little stink? Put them in the freezer. Goodbye, germs and odor. You can also freeze clothes with a sticky substance, like gum, to make it peel right off.
Make a Cardboard Laundry Folder
Raise your hand if you hate folding laundry. Many people do. That's why you have that pile of clean laundry just sitting in the basket. Shave some time off the laundry folding task by creating a cardboard shirt folder. It's super easy and adds a little fun. Kids might even be curious and want to fold some shirts.
Freshen Clothes With Alcohol
Do you know what causes smells in your laundry? Bacteria. Do you know what kills it? Alcohol. Add a little high-proof vodka or rubbing alcohol to a spray bottle. Spritz your clothes and let them dry. No more stink.
Use Your Shower Bar as a Drying Rack
You might not air-dry clothes often. So, there isn't any point in investing in a drying rack. You can just use your shower bar. Add them to a hanger, or just throw them over to let them dry. Plus, if you leave them there while someone is showering, they get a natural steam to remove wrinkles.
Use a Detergent Drip Catcher
Laundry detergent isn't cheap, especially if you go for the good stuff. So, you don't want to waste even a drop. If you put a drip catcher under the spout and place the measuring cap on it, it catches all the drips between washings. You can also cut a small hole in the bottom of the liquid detergent container after no more comes out of the spout to get the stuff caught in the bottom.
Use a Fan to Help Clothes Dry Faster
It might seem common knowledge, but many people don't think of breaking out their box fans when trying to dry clothes. It's helpful to get them to air dry faster. You could also set them in front of a window on a nice day.
Make DIY Stain Removers
You don't need to get fancy when it comes to stain remover. You most likely have everything you need in your bathroom and kitchen. A 2:1 mixture of hydrogen peroxide to Dawn dish soap can pretty much remove any stain you encounter. Having a chalk stick in your laundry arsenal is also beneficial. It's great for soaking up stains.
Pull Clothes From Wash Quickly to Avoid Wrinkles
Wrinkles don't have to happen if you are on top of your laundry. Set a timer to ensure you pull the laundry out of the washer the minute it's done. You'll also want to give your laundry a little snap to remove any wrinkles that are trying to settle. To go the extra mile, you can smooth the fabric out with your hands before tossing it in the dryer. Those few seconds can save lots of time later with the ironing board.
Separate Clothes by Fabric Weights
Separating laundry is a game changer, and it's not just by color. Try to separate clothing by weight to ensure everything gets washed equally. For example, wash jeans with jeans. Sorting your clothing by weight rather than color can make sure everything gets cleaned evenly.
Use Baking Soda for Arm Pit Stains
Are armpit stains a big problem in your house? Get rid of those unsightly stains in a flash. Mix ½ cup of hydrogen peroxide with a bit of baking soda to make a watery paste. Add it to the pit stains on your whites and let it sit overnight. Wash as normal. No more unsightly pit stains.
Use Baking Soda and Vinegar for Musty Towels
You have a few towels that got lost in the bottom of the hamper and now, the stink is, well, yuck! Combat that musty odor with a 2-cycle wash.
- Wash the towels with a cup of white vinegar.
- Do another wash with a cup of baking soda.
- Dry as normal.
Air Out Your Washer Between Cycles
Washers handle a lot of germs, like a LOT. And they don't all just wash away during the cycle. The dark drum and steamy conditions can make bacteria build up. Don't give it a chance by letting your washer air out. Leave the door open between cycles so air can circulate and dry out the drum.
Deodorize and Lighten Clothes With the Sun
Need whiter whites? Does your white t-shirt have a stink you aren't sure of? Put it out in the sun. While UV rays might be horrible for your skin, they're great for whitening whites and killing germs. You'll have a nice white, stink-free shirt in a few hours, and you didn't have to do a thing.
Down and Dirty Laundry Hacks to Try
We will do anything to make laundry a little easier. Because let's face it, it's a never-ending chore. These hacks might not do the laundry for you, but they can shave off a bit of time. However, it would be nice if someone created a way for laundry to do itself. You can always dream. Until such a day, try these laundry hacks to make your life easier.