Give Your Laundry a Natural Boost with These Seven DIY Ideas
The fact that they're sustainable and environmentally-friendly are just a few reasons to use these natural products.
Doing laundry can feel like a chore. And while cleaning your clothes is essential, it can also be an eco-friendly homeowner's nightmare. With so many chemicals in everyday cleaning products—not to mention synthetics from our clothes—doing a load of laundry can leave you feeling environmentally dirty. Forego chemical-filled products for your next trip to the washing machine and opt for something more natural with the help of our eco-conscious ideas.
Instead of buying laundry essentials like detergent, dryer sheets, and fabric softener, you can make your own. We're sharing quick and simple DIY projects to get everything in your laundry basket looking and smelling as good as new. The key to creating your own cleaning products is using simple and effective ingredients. One of the most frequently used materials in our homemade cleaning products is vinegar. The acidic substance helps melt away dirt and grime for a natural clean. In fact, it's a key aspect of our Fabric Softener, which is made using just distilled white vinegar and essential oils. Another go-to ingredient is baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate. It's a powerhouse chemical compound, and it does everything from brighten your whites to fighting odor. One of our favorite tips is to place baking soda at the bottom of your hamper—it'll serve the same purpose as that box of baking soda in your fridge—to eliminate bad smells instead of masking them with over-powering fragrances.
From fighting washing machine odors to creating your own fabric softener, explore ways to do laundry using natural ingredients.
DIY Fabric Softener
The combination of essential oils and distilled white vinegar is a simple, natural alternative to conventional fabric softener, but it'll leave your clothes just as snuggly as its store-bought counterpart.
DIY Dryer Balls
Chemical-free, the only liquid involved in this natural laundry solution is essential oils.
Chemical-Free Washing Machine Cleanse
Sometimes your washer may be the very thing standing in the way of fresh laundry. Dirt and residue often get stuck in the nooks of your machine, so cleaning it once or twice a month is essential. Remove all clothing from the machine, then pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into the detergent compartment and run a complete cycle to remove built-up residue from detergents and dirty laundry.
How to Wash Your Pillows Using Natural Ingredients
Pillows are something many people forget to wash, but they should be laundered at least twice a year. Like all other bedding, pillows accumulate dust, dirt, and sweat from our bodies as we sleep, so it's important to remove all of that residue. To wash them in a more natural way, fill your machine with hot water and add 1/2 cup of baking soda before adding your pillows. (If you have a front-load washer, place the pillows and baking soda in at the same time.) Set your machine to the heavy soil setting and run a full cycle. Make sure to wash two pillows at once, which ensures your machine remains balanced. Once the cycle is completed, transfer the pillows to the dryer with a few tennis balls to fluff them up again.
DIY Dryer Sheets
Not only are dryer sheets full of chemicals that get released into the air, residue from these chemicals are left on your clothes, which then come in contact with your skin. Thankfully, dryer sheets are one of the easiest laundry products to make yourself. Start by placing cut up fabric squares in a container with a tight seal, such as a mason jar. Pour one cup of vinegar and, if desired, eight to ten drops of your favorite essential oil over the fabric squares, then seal and shake. Add three to four squares with each dryer load to give laundry a natural fabric-softening boost while keeping static at bay.
Natural Way to Clean Towels and Bedding
There is an easy way to make sure your towels and sheets come out fresh smelling with every wash—and it might surprise you. You may just think of baking soda as something to keep odors out of the fridge, but it also works wonders in the laundry room. Add 1/2-cup of baking soda to your laundry's rinse cycle, and wash on the hottest setting for best results (be sure to check your item's washing directions first). Dry as normal for the freshest smelling towels and bedsheets.
Use a Natural Stain Remover
Add two tablespoons of baking soda to laundry detergent to make it more effective or mix it with a small amount of water to form a paste to remove greasy stains.