Laundry is a mind-numbing chore. We spend hours washing, drying, and folding, and sometimes, it seems like it would be easier to downsize our closets than it is to iron another stubborn wrinkle. However, these surprising and unorthodox methods can make your next wash day more efficient and productive.
Soften Sheets With Baking Soda and Vinegar
The best way to soften bed sheets involves two everyday household items: baking soda and vinegar. Add 1 cup of baking soda to the washer and start the cycle with hot water. After the rise cycle, switch the temperature to cold and add 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Finish the wash cycle and tumble the sheets dry as you usually would.
Remove Wrinkles Using Ice Cubes
You can quickly remove wrinkles with just a few ice cubes — no iron needed. Place wrinkled clothing in the dryer with four ice cubes, then run on high heat for 10 minutes. After you remove the clothing, shake it quickly to remove any remaining wrinkles, and you’re good to go.
Use Chalk to Remove Grease
Stubborn grease stains can be easily removed with chalk made of calcium carbonate, a chemical compound that absorbs oil. Rub a stick of chalk on the stain, let sit for several minutes, and then wipe away the residue before washing the clothes.
Remove Odors With Vodka
If you don’t have time to run a full load of laundry, you can use vodka to remove odors from clothing. Buy cheap, unflavored vodka and pour some into a spray bottle. Treat any smelly clothing with a light spray and let it dry to quickly remove unpleasant odors.
Wash Socks in a Mesh Bag
One of the biggest grievances of doing laundry is folding your clean clothes only to find that one sock is missing its counterpart. It happens more often than not. To prevent this, purchase a mesh laundry bag for your socks and other small pieces of clothing. Run the closed back through the wash as usual to ensure you never lose another sock.
Hand Wash Using a Salad Spinner
Use a salad spinner to wash small, hand-wash-only clothing. Add the dirty clothing and soapy water to the salad spinner and steep for five to 10 minutes. Then, gently spin for a few seconds. Remove the strainer and empty the drain if your spinner has one before placing the clothing back into the spinner. Spin again for one minute, and then air dry the damp clothing.
Use Pool Noodles as Hangers
Hanging clothing on traditional hangers may cause sharp creasing in the shoulders. Pool noodles are a perfect alternative. Cut a piece of pool noodle to the same length as the bottom of your hanger. Then, cut the noodle lengthwise and attach it to the hanger. Set your new contraption up in the bathroom to help dry delicate fabrics.
Puff Down Jackets Using Tennis Balls
Cleaning a down jacket using traditional methods may cause it to lose its classic puffiness. To restore its shape, run the wet jacket through the dryer on the lowest heat setting or, if possible, no heat. Add two or three clean tennis balls, which will pound against the jacket to puff it back up, similar to how hitting a pillow restores its fluffiness.
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