30 Squeaky-Clean Laundry Hacks

ALL OF THE STAINS.

1. Use the power of the sun on tomato-based stains (and cloth diapers).

According to this blog, put out the stained item in full sun while it’s very wet.

2. White bread can blot out a lipstick stain.

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Cut off the crust, wad up the soft center into a ball, then blot. Anything that remains should come out in the washer. From here.

3. Hairspray and hand sanitizer beat even the worst ink stains.

Just spray or squirt, wait about 10 minutes, and wash normally. From here.

4. Cold water and hand soap wash out blood stains.

This works best while the blood’s still wet. If it’s dried, hydrogen peroxide works best.

5. Hydrogen peroxide also kicks grass-stain butt.

Mix 2 tbsp hydrogen peroxide and 1 tbsp dish soap with a little elbow grease for the most effective treatment. From here.

6. Chalk works on grease stains.

Rub the chalk onto greasy stains, and the powder will absorb the oil. From here.

7. So does baby powder.

Gently brush on some powder, sweep off the excess, then let it sit for a few minutes. Repeat until the stain is gone. From here.

8. There are a billion ways to get rid of those yellow sweat stains.

OK, maybe just nine. From here.

9. Use club soda, salt, milk, or kitty litter to remove freshly spilled red wine.

Just make sure you treat the stain right away. Get more detailed instructions for each of these methods here.

10. Ditch the acrylic paint stain with some rubbing alcohol.

Plus a little bit of gentle elbow grease. From here.

11. Make your dry-clean last longer with spot treatments.

Dry-cleaning actually shortens the life of your clothes. So if you can spot-treat stains, do it. Just test in an inconspicuous area first. From here.

12. Spritz a shirt with vinegar to make it last longer between washings.

Try a combo of No. 4 and No. 5 on this page: Spritz your clothing with vinegar, then hang outside to air-dry.

13. Save time by sorting your clothes when you take them off.

Buy four cheap laundry baskets: one for whites, one for darks, one for brights, one for dry cleaning. Of course, this assumes you have floor space for it…
From here.

14. Spritz lavender water on your clothes before washing.

Add a drop or two of essential oil to a spray bottle filled with water, then spritz right before you wash your clothes. From here.

15. A little vinegar goes a long way.

Use it for your towels, your workout clothes, and anything else that’s a little sour-smelling. Add it at the beginning of the wash so your clothes don’t smell vinegar-y at the end. From here.

16. Whiten your whites with baking soda.

It won’t tear up your clothes like bleach. This blog recommends 1 cup per load, but I’ve had success with 1/2 cup per load.

17. Never lose a sock again with the help of lingerie bags.

Good for families, and those of us who do wash and fold. From here.

18. You can also use lingerie bags to wash stuffed animals.

Just don’t wash anything with a music box or talking box inside! Get the full tutorial here.

19. Make note of which clothes shouldn’t go in the dryer using a dry-erase marker.

20. Replace your dryer sheet with a ball of aluminum foil.

This blogger’s family has been doing it for 30 years. Wad the sheet of foil into a ball, and you can re-use it for six months.

21. If you just can’t give up that dryer-sheet smell…

Douse a hand towel in fabric softener and let it dry. Then toss it in with every load you dry. Get more details here.

22. Use a fluffy towel to make your clothes dry faster.

Put it in the dryer with your clothes and it will help absorb water. Just pull it out after about 15 minutes so it doesn’t continue to contribute to the water in the dryer. From here.

23. Dry sweaters faster by making a towel burrito.

Lay your sweater out on a dry towel, then roll them up together like a yoga mat. Don’t wring the towel, just press, gently. From here.

24. Use a salad spinner to help your panties and bras dry faster.

You can’t stick them in the dryer, but you need them for that date tonight. So pretend they’re lettuce and stick them in the salad spinner.

25. Clothes shrunk? Try conditioner.

See here for a full tutorial. Basically, you soak your shrunken piece of clothing in lukewarm water with some hair conditioner for a few minutes.

26. Listen to your mom: Hang up your clothes.

Pull them out and hang them up right after the dryer cycle’s over. That way your pants won’t be wrinkled when you need them first thing Monday morning.

27. Dilute a little fabric softener with water to make your own wrinkle spray.

The ratio should be about 1 part fabric softener to 10 parts water. From here.

28. Avoid sweater shoulder bumps.

Fold them. Or, if you insist on hanging them, at least hang them the right way.

29. Iron better by starting with a damp shirt.

Try spritzing it with a little water. From here.

30. Transform a folding TV tray into a dorm-sized ironing board.

See the tutorial here.

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