Laundry days aren’t the cheerful days the ads make them out to be. They’re painful, time-consuming and full of confusion. And what do you get for all the effort? Clothes that could still be cleaner.
We’ve all had these moments. We have a way around them for you. Below are a few tips that’ll make your laundry day a bit better in case you decide to keep on doing it.
1. Pre-soak before you Wash
Pre-soaking is your solution to getting cleaner clothes every time. The first thing to do is to make sure your clothes are safe for soaking by checking the care label. Fill a tub with warm water and detergent and soak the clothes you want to wash in it. The longer you soak, the better. Washmen recommends anything between 30 minutes to 1 hour.
2. Inside out
If you want to preserve the colour of your clothes for a longer period of time, wash them inside out. Love your jeans but hate how they fade fast with every clean? How about that deep blue sweater? The worst of sweat and dirt is on the inside of your clothes, not the outside. An inside-out wash routine will get the best results. Plus, this will ensure that your garments have a longer life and any embellishments (like T-shirt prints and especially jean dyes) are not damaged. Win!
3. Less is more
More detergent doesn’t mean cleaner clothes. If you use too much detergent for your machine size, residue could build up on your clothes. When you go on to iron them after, that residue turns forms a white film and your clothes’ colours will look like they’ve faded. Don’t worry – it’s reversible by washing it with water only. We figure though you’d want to avoid the hassle altogether.
Read your machine’s instructions to know exactly just how much it can handle.
4. No fabric softener
At least not today’s chemical-laden ones! Not only can they be toxic, they end up making some materials less absorbent, like towels which you obviously don’t want. If you do want “soft” clothes, try adding half a cup of baking soda in the wash cycle before you put in your clothes, and let it work its magic.
5. Go cold
Trust us. Heat is likely to ruin or shrink your clothes. So we suggest you use cold (or at least colder than what you opt for now) water when doing your laundry. This works best when you pre-soak your clothes. It prolongs the life of your garments, is better for the environment and saves you some energy costs. It also plays a bit of role in keeping your clothes soft as well.
6. Air dry
In almost all circumstances, naturally drying your clothes is the best option. (Outside of course, as it’s very dangerous to dry laundry indoors!). An added benefit of this is having clothes that are fresher. But if you do (have to) use a dryer, make sure you use the correct settings. Delicates, workout clothes and synthetic fibres should generally be dried at lower heat settings, while regular wear (cotton) clothes, towels and bedsheets can be dried on higher temperatures.
7. Use white vinegar
Vinegar is your friend. It tastes great with your salad. It works wonders on your laundry. Vinegar is gentle on the fabric and the colours of your clothes, yet strong enough to be your secret weapon. Just half a cup in the machine can make your clothes smell better, softer, and brighter. It also doubles as a stain remover. All you have to do is to pour a half a cup of white vinegar with half a cup of warm water into the washing machine. You’ll love the results.