Saturday, April 4, 2015

Frugal Living 101 | The Laundry Room

Check out some of the ways my family simplifies and saves money when doing our laundry:

1. Read those labels! Protect your clothing so it lasts as long as possible. Many sweaters and delicate tops should line dry. In the summer, invest in a good clothes line. My family uses an Amish pulley system line in the warmer months which you can find at most hardware stores.

Almost all of my sweaters should lay flat to dry but it's hard to find enough room to lay them all out! I discovered these handy drying racks from Bed Bath & Beyond for only $9.99 a piece. Stack them up to save even more room!

2. Take care of your delicates! Take care of delicate articles of clothing in the washing machine with lingerie and bra bags! Tide makes some really nice bags that you can buy at Walmart for a great price. Place your bras and other delicate items in the bags for the washing machine (who has time to hand wash?!). This will prevent your bras from warping as they whir around and also prevent the hooks from getting caught on other articles of clothing!

And...if you're throwing all your bras and tights in the dryer, stop now!! The heat will break down the elastics and also cause pilling. Lay your bras flat to dry; don't hang them by their straps as this will stretch them out!

2. Cut down on supplies! Detergent is concentrated so you don't need a lot. Unless you have particularly dirty clothing, you can safely halve the recommended detergent amount and your clothing will get clean just as well! 

To really save money, stop using fabric softener entirely. My family hasn't been using softener for years and our clothing gets just as clean and fresh. While softener doesn't technically lessen the life of your clothing, it isn't really needed either. Detergent alone (especially a good one, like Tide) will clean your clothes well. If you can't part with your softener, at least don't use it on towels!! Fabric softener breaks down the absorbency properties in microfiber towels.

Cut your dryer sheets in half! We still use dryer sheets to repel lint (and dog hair!) and control static in the winter months, but we've started cutting them in half to get twice the life of our dryer sheets. Plus, half a sheet works just as well as a whole! We buy Costco's Kirkland fabric sheets: 2 boxes at $7.99 for a total of 500 sheets. After cutting them in half, that comes to 1,000 sheets at $0.008 a sheet!!

How do you save money on laundry?

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