Who doesn’t love the feeling of fresh crisp sheets, fluffy bath towels, or soft cotton shirts that smell oh so good? NO ONE!
But how do we get there when we are trying to cut out harmful chemicals, avoid over washing, or have skin sensitivities?
In this ultimate guide to naturally cleaner laundry we will first go through five items to add into your wash routine.
Next we will go over simple practises that get your laundry next level clean.
Then we will end with how you can save money when you implement these things into your wash life!
Items to add to your wash routine
All five things are part of my daily wash routine and I have been using them for over six years. So I know they work!
1: Use vinegar instead of fabric softener
There’s rarely a time when I don’t add vinegar to a load of laundry. Vinegar is magical. It does so many things to make your laundry wonderfully clean! Some examples of this are:
- It softens your laundry
- Strips off old soap and residue
- Prevents lint from sticking on the laundry
- Gets rid of that stinky mildew smell
- Whitens the whites and keeps the darks dark!
Again, it’s magic.
Just add 1/2c of vinegar to the fabric softener compartment of your machine, or you can add it to the bleach compartment. Sometimes when my clothes are super bad I add it straight onto the clothes! (pour it under the waterfall as its filling for top load washers, or if your using a high efficiency machine, pour it on the bottom of the drum and then fill with laundry)
2: Baking soda
To me, baking soda reminds me of vinegar in how it works. It washes away the stinky odours, acts as a softener, and whitens the whites.
Sprinkle 1/4c to 1/2c of soda onto your load as its filling for a cleaning power boost.
If you ever feel like you’ve ruined a load with too much soda just put it through another rinse cycle (or if your washer is like mine and doesn’t have a rinse option then use the “speed wash” setting or start a load and once its full switch it to “drain and spin”) Any extra soda will wash right out!
(I hesitated adding borax to this list because it is a controversial subject in the “green cleaning” world, but I decide to add it because it is something I use personally, although sparingly and with caution. Also, it is derived from natural minerals, similar- but not the same- as baking soda)
Borax is great for those super tough to clean items. I use it for things like my husbands work clothes. It gives them a thorough wash and rinses away of all the caked on grease and oils. Only a small amount of borax is needed, about 1/4c to do its job, and a good job it does indeed.
4: Soap shavings
I like to keep soap shavings on hand for super hard to get off gunk.
I just buy a hard bar soap that I like the smell of, grate it with my cheese grater (you can use a food processor too), and store it in a glass jar.
Add the shavings directly to the spot that needs extra cleaning power or sprinkle 1/4 cup on the top of the load. The key for using soap shavings is to only use them when you need to, because if you use them too much they can cause a build up of residue on your clothes.
5: Essential oil on wool dryer balls
I have never used dryer sheets.
They can cause skin irritation and create a lot of buildup on your laundry. For years I just dried my clothes with nothing added in at all and it worked well. But I became annoyed with how much static some of my loads of laundry were creating. So I bought wool dryer balls to help with that.
I soon realized that I could add a couple of drops of my favourite essential oils onto the dryer balls for an added scent booster. SCORE! Essential oils that are safe for skin are perfect to use on your dryer balls, and some are disinfecting too. I love using classics like lavender and orange.
Simple practises to get your laundry next level clean
Next I’m going to throw out three easy ways to get your laundry next level clean!
1: Sun dry
Whenever possible, dry your laundry in the sun. Even if it’s cloudy out, the UV rays will clean your clothes. The sun will keep your white clothes glowing, fade stains, and it kills germs and bacteria!
2: Strip your heavily soiled laundry
Every few months or once a year strip your laundry to keep it fresh. “Stripping” means to strip away oils, stuck on grime, soap residue, and all other icky stuff that has collected on your laundry.
Good candidates for this process are; bed sheets and pillow cases, towels, cloth diapers and wipes, white clothes, work clothes (garage or machinary work for instance), and dish rags.
All you need to do is:
- Fill your bathtub 3/4 full with super hot water, the hotter the better!
- Add in 1/4c Borax, 1/4c washing soda (I use baking soda and still get great results), and 1/2c laundry detergent.
- Add in just washed laundry, they can be wet or dry
- Let it soak until the water is cooled, about four hours or so. Stir occasionally.
- After the stripping process is complete wash in the washing machine without any detergent
3: Sort your laundry
Not just by colour (which is still very important) but you can also sort your laundry by material, soil level, durability, etc. The more your laundry is sorted, the more you can customize what you add to the wash cycle.
You will save money too!
Not only will you have amazingly fresh laundry, but you’ll end up saving money without even realizing it. By implementing the tips mentioned above you can cut costs in many different ways. Just to name a few, you will;
- Use your dryer less
- Never have to buy dryer sheets again
- Reduce the need to buy stronger detergents and treatments
- Buy your regular detergent less
- Run the washing machine less frequently
I hope this post has provided some value to you, and that you are able to implement these tips into your laundry routine to get cleaner laundry for your home. Thanks for stopping by the blog!
The Ultimate Guide To Naturally Cleaner Laundry – A Lovely Place Called Home
Love these ideas! I have been staying away from drier sheets for a few years now and I have been looking for other natural ways to get our clothes clean aside from typical detergents. My husband’s clothes get caked on with dirt and grease. So happy to hear of some natural solutions to clean our clothes. Thank you for breaking it down by each ingredient and why each is beneficial to add.
Thankyou! I hope the ideas I gave work for your tough laundry!