For many, laundry is the bane of all of existence! There always seems to be a mountain of clothes that need to be washed, stains that never seem to come out, and the never ending folding and sorting. Here are a few tricks I employ when I do laundry.
Before You Start
Before doing any washing sort by fabric weight. For example, towels together, sheets together etc.
The reason behind this is different fabrics absorb water at different rates so if you wash your towels with all your synthetic workout gear, the towels will grab all the water before the workout gear has a chance to absorb any!
This causes the soap to not wash out or the other clothing to not get clean at the same rate.
I do not take the time to separate light and color clothing because most of the clothing today is color safe.
Some clients of mine like to do the laundry by person. Other people like to do it all by category – shirts, pants, etc. So, there are preferences but in terms of cost savings of both water and electricity I think fabric separation is best.
Now let’s get into it!
I personally use a brand of laundry soap with no scent. Most detergents, I personally believe, have a scent that is too strong. Laundry pods are also a great idea. They come wrapped in a biodegradable plastic that dissolves in water and the detergent is already measured out. Just drop a pod in the drum and you’re good to go. My personal preferences are Ecover laundry detergent or Dropps. Lately though, I have just been using a teaspoon of dish soap, which comes out just as good for half the price.
For fabric softener I use vinegar. Yes – you read that right! Don’t worry, the smell vanishes when used with detergent. The plus about using vinegar is that it keeps the hard water from building up in your machine. Some say it isn’t good for the machine but I haven’t had any issues and I have been using it for years. It is the more eco-friendly option as long as you buy vinegar in bulk and in glass containers. (And even if you buy plastic containers it is still a better option.)
From what I understand, making your own detergents can do harm to the machine and powders in general as not as good for the machine as liquids. So I would advise against this.
I line dry whatever I can, but I don’t like the way towels and socks feel when they are line dried so I prefer to use the dryer for these items.
Turning on the spin cycle on high for non-delicates makes them dry faster, so you use a lot less energy.
I also add dryer balls to the dryer which helps keep air in between the fabrics and allows everything to dryer quicker and evenly.
Putting Clean Clothes Away
For me it’s a family effort. After the laundry is dry, everyone is responsible for finding their clothes, folding, and putting them away.
Some of my listeners with larger laundry areas have shelves in their laundry rooms with a basket for each person. After drying, someone sorts the clothing into the correct basket and each kid is responsible for putting it away.
Try your best to put away clean clothes as soon as they are dry. Don’t let them sit in the dryer or in a basket. The clothes are then at risk of getting mixed up with dirty clothes or just not being able to find the item of clothing that you need.
Now what about maintenance on your machine? Using vinegar in the rinse cycle helps. I have a front loader and every few weeks I clean out the rubber seal. I also clean the soap area because it gets gross and crusty… but really the vinegar does most of the work. Many people I know use lemon or salt to clean the washer every few weeks and these keep it smelling fresh.
I always leave the door open to let the rubber part air out and keep from getting moldy.
To keep laundry fresh in between uses, maybe for a sweater or a skirt, I use a linen spray, I like the Caldera rosewater scent. It helps make them smell a little more fresh.
Hope you found this post helpful! But I want to hear from you – what do you do to keep your laundry under control? Let me know in the comments!