8 Hacks to Make Laundry Almost Do Itself
Have you seen that washer/dryer contraption that can fold your clothes too? Here’s my thought: if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck… it’s a duck. In other words, I wouldn’t bet on that machine being your laundry lifesaver, particularly since it won’t be available until 2019!
In the meantime, you’re going to need clean underwear, among other things, and I’ve got the hacks that will help you get it done quickly and easily. First among them, because there is no way around it: set up a routine that works for you. Some people swear by doing laundry daily or a couple of times a week, to avoid the overwhelming pile. Me? I only do laundry on weekends and I try and do it all in one day between other errands and activities so that at the end of it, I can take the ENORMOUS pile on my bed, turn on something fun to watch on Netflix and fold, pile and hang to my heart’s content. Okay, maybe not my heart’s content but it’s less painful with Downton Abbey on.
© laundry image via Shutterstock
Not in the mood to iron?
Here’s a trick that worked for me. I tossed the wrinkled shirt (that was in the bottom of the clean laundry pile, but somehow never made it to the closet) into the dryer with a dryer sheet and an ice cube. Yes, an ice cube. Ten minutes of spinning heat and a little steam and presto-chango, no wrinkles. A moist hand towel works for this too – just don’t make it sopping wet or you could be waiting a while for that shirt.
Ran out of dryer sheets and have a load of towels to finish?
A ball of aluminum foil tossed into the dryer with your towels will get them fluffy and ready to fold. Bonus? The ball will get rid of static too. And you can re-use it! Win!
Who hasn’t thrown out a white or light t-shirt because of yellowing pit stains? Ew, right? Toss no more, however: just mix lemon juice with baking soda to form a paste, soak the armpits of the shirt in this for about an hour and wash. Contending with a host of other stains? Check out this printable.
Freeze your jeans
No need to wash your jeans, unless they’re actually stained. It’s not great for the denim fibres to be washed too often anyway. Just fold them and place them in the freezer overnight. They’ll be fresh—literally and figuratively—in the morning! The cold freezes any odour causing bacteria and literally brings the jeans back to life.
Forget sorting—if you have the space, get multiple hampers!
This actually makes life super easy, and really, unless you have clothes that need that extra TLC, you can get away with two: one for lights and one for colours. Items get tossed into the appropriate hamper and sorting is done. If you still have space, consider a third hamper for towels and heavier items like jeans (always assuming you don’t intend to freeze them!)
Put clean laundry in drawers from back to front
Someone once told me that thieves open drawers from the bottom to the top because then they don’t have to shut one before opening the next. Logical. Criminal, but logical. Well, the same thought process can be brought to putting away clean laundry: start from the back of the drawer and fill forwards instead of stacking top to bottom. Roll t-shirts, underwear, whatever you have in the drawers and you will be able to see everything easily!
No more socks lost between the machines!
This is a great little hack: if you tend to lose socks or other small items down the side of the machine (whether with a wall or next to the dryer), place a strip of carpet the depth of the machine and when you drop something, you need only pull that strip out and retrieve the fallen item. No more trying to poke it out with a stick or an unravelled coat hanger.
Speaking of lost socks
Make sure you have a lost and found bin for your socks. If you’ve got one without a mate, throw it in there. They’ll hopefully find each other eventually! You can also wash them in mesh laundry bags, under the theory that what goes in must come out. I still have had one disappear doing this, which makes me think I’m dealing with laundry gremlins but that’s another post.
Do you have any laundry hacks you care to share with us?