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Simple Laundry Hacks That You Ought to Know

With housework, I try to work smarter, not harder. (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)
With housework, I try to work smarter, not harder. (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

I’m all for working smarter, not harder. When I learn a new tip that makes life’s chores simpler, easier, and cheaper, I like to share with my friends so they too can benefit.

This Buzzfeed video offers some good ideas for when you next decide to attack your laundry:

Jeans

Most people have a few different pairs of jeans, your newer ones and your older ones. Personally, I like the process of jeans fading out and getting more comfortable, as I wear them in.

How do you treat your jeans? (Image:rachelnan/pixabay)

How do you treat your jeans? (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

But when you’ve bought a new pair of dark indigos, you want them to stay dark. Here’s two ways you can keep them looking like they came out of the factory:

  • Wash them in a solution of salty water: 1 cup salt to 1 cup of water.
  • Never wash them: This is the advice given by Levi’s CEO, Chip Bergh. Instead, some people suggest putting your jeans in the freezer to kill off some of the bacteria that build up on the denim; however, this just slows them down. Airing and spot cleaning your jeans is the best method for refreshing them; if you decide to save water and skip a wash. In fact, why can’t we take this idea to more items in our wardrobe?
  • Wash with a cold cycle: This prevents shrinkage and is more color-fast.
Your jeans can dodge water with a wash-free approach (Image:PublicDomainArchive/pixabay)

Your jeans can dodge water with a wash-free approach (Image: (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

Whites

  • For refreshing bad-smelling clothes, add a cup of vinegar or bicarb soda, or a few drops of lavender oil to the final rinse. All these ingredients contain anti-bacterial and anti-mildew properties.
  • To brighten tired, yellowing whites, again, add a cup of vinegar to the final rinse. Or soak your clothes in a bucket with 5 aspirin tablets dissolved in hot water.
  • To soften your clothes, both vinegar or bicarb soda will soften the water and your clothes, and reduce the static electricity.

Dark colors

  • Add a cup of salt to the rinse cycle: This keeps colors strong and bright, as the salt is a natural color fixative.
Cold salty water preserves the depth of color in dark clothes. (image:Hans/pixabay)

Cold, salty water preserves the depth of color in dark clothes. (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

Clean your washing machine

  • Add a half-cup of any brand of mouthwash to your empty washer and run a rinse cycle. This will refresh, clean, and kill any bacteria that’s been festering away in there; for how many years?

Ironing

  • If you are not a fan of ironing, or don’t even own an iron, you can use your trusty blow dryer; it works quite well, as does a burst of warm to hot air in a clothes dryer.

Smelly hampers

  • Tie one end of an old stocking and fill with half cup of bicarb soda. Tie the other end and toss into your hamper. You can replace this every few months with fresh bicarb. This trick works because  bicarb acts as an odor eater, absorbing and neutralizing stale smells.
Your hamper, full of dirty, moist clothes, might start to pong after a few days. (Image:PublicDomainArchive/pixabay)

Your hamper, full of dirty, moist clothes, might start to pong after a few days. (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

DIY starch spray

  • Add 2 tablespoons of corn-starch into a mist spray bottle, fill with water, and shake well until all the powder has dissolved. Shake well before use each time, spray, and iron. This should work as well as any store-bought ironing aid, and costs peanuts.

Laundry sustainability

Most of these tips not only save you time and money, they are also a green and sustainable way to do laundry; especially the “no wash” concept, which is challenging at first, but makes so much sense.

Sustainable laundry: water, sun and a light breeze. (Image:Hans/pixabay)

Sustainable laundry: water, sun, and a light breeze. (Image: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

Through sharing our ideas, we can help each other to live a more productive, cleaner, and healthier lifestyle; without depending so much on consumerism for everything we need.

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