Laundry routines

Coincidentally, in a 24 hour period I read about washing habits of two different bloggers – The Manly Housekeeper and An Exacting Life.  I was shocked that the Manly Housekeeper can do 6 loads of washing in a day – that’s more clothes than I’d own I think!  I also realised he’s not from the Sydney suburb Manly, he’s just a man.

– I do a dark load and a light load per week
– I separate lights and darks with two washing hampers

Sorting before washing - two hampers lets me know when I have enough for a load

Sorting before washing – two hampers lets me know when I have enough for a load

– I hang gym clothes over my bathroom tension rail, on hangers, til they are dry, then I put them in the hampers.  This stops the constant need to wash wet and dirty clothes
– I wash in cold (except the occasional hot wash for sheets and towels – but that’d be about once a month)
– I always wash overnight (I have metering that makes it cheaper to do this)
– Everything gets hung out on a rack, or over my ‘balcony’ from the upstairs of my loft
– I treat stains, mainly with a little soap stick. It works well

My washing products: homemade washing powder, wool wash, oxidising powder and my little yellow stain remover soap

My washing products: homemade washing powder, wool wash, oxidising powder and my little yellow stain remover soap

– I do delicate washes as needed – either in my washing machine under a special setting or by hand (such as silk)
– I iron uniforms, cotton shirts and pillowcases (a habit I’m trying to get out of!)
– I fold everything as I take it off the line – making what can be two jobs at my parents, into one job.

I don’t
– use a dryer (therefore the weight of my clothes has never been a big consideration)
– use fabric softener
– use store bought washing liquid

Overall, washing isn’t a chore in my head.  I enjoy having everything clean and sorted.  Actually, I take it upon myself to fold and put away, or hang out washing, when I see it.  It just makes me zen.  Perhaps it’s genetic – my friend’s child calls my father the ‘washing monster’!

How do you do your laundry?  Can you see room for improvement in my routines?  I wouldn’t mind alternative to shop bought wool wash, plastic wrapped stain remover, and the oxidising agent (that I use sparingly, I have more than a box, and I’ve had it a year) – any thoughts?

7 thoughts on “Laundry routines

  1. Parallel lives again! I also use Earth Choice and the stain stick (different one, though.) I was using the timer to do loads in the middle of the night, but it woke everyone up! Still love the timer though. It’s very kind to me – finishes the washing for me just as I get home from work, so I can peg it straight away.

    I’ve been meaning to try the home-made Stain Remover recipe + Laundry Powder at Frugal and Thriving, but haven’t got that far yet!

  2. I also fold everything as I take it off the clothes horse, and I love having everything clean and folded :). At the moment I’m far from that and almost out of clean clothes because I was away for the weekend and haven’t caught up yet. And I share a washing machine with my landlords and it’s in their kitchen, so I try to do my washing when they’re not there to not intrude too much.

    Would you mind sharing the name of the stain remover you use? I usually treat greasy stains with washing up liquid, but don’t have anything to treat other stains. I use soap nuts instead of washing powder because I also don’t like the chemicals, and a bag of them lasts more than a year.

    • I’ve not tried soap nuts but perhaps I should? I think the soap is called Exit Soap – definately had a dark blue label and I’ve seen it sold near the check out at (Australian) target for $4. If I find a good photo or link, I’ll email you

  3. I use soap nuts for almost everything now, even shampoo. They’re a bit tough to get used to, but I feel a lot better about using it. You can also just compost them afterwards, I’m working on a comprehensive post for sometime in April / May after my experiments are over.

    However most of the time, I don’t use soap nuts at all. I just wash my clothes without any detergent if they aren’t greasy or heavily soiled. The water and agitation gets everything out.

    I wash everything on cold, and I hang it all to dry with clothespins in the basement. I really hate the smell of the detergents and dryer things now.

    If you DO want to use a dryer, you can use a felted wool ball — you can make them yourself and they work great on static. I don’t bother with any of that…

    For stain removers, there’s a local farm here that creates a stain remover stick with borax, and I use it on occasion when there’s something I can’t get out.

    • Hmm I really need to find out more about these soap nuts.

      Agreed – my mother washed some tops for me, and the smell of detergent was SO strong yesterday, I couldn’t believe it!

      I’m in two minds about borax – I worry it isn’t great for people’s health…


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