As the weather warms up I’ve been enjoying the outdoors on laundry day, hanging my laundry to dry on the best clothesline ever. Line drying your laundry is a big step in the right direction, when it comes to conserving resources and money. Plus, it’s just nice. I find my kids play outside more on days I hang laundry.
Front Load Washing Machine
Of course you know that front load washing machines conserve water and use less detergent. If you need to purchase a new washing machine, be sure to take advantage of rebates currently available on Energy Star models. Purchasing a new machine isn’t the right choice for us, as our machine runs well. Plus, we still wash cloth diapers, which can be difficult in a front load machine. If you’re facing that struggle now, try these tips for washing cloth diapers in a front load washing machine.
Earth-friendly, people-safe Detergent
Is your detergent scented? Does it promise to make your whites brighter or your clothes softer? Is it a funky blue color? Fragrances, brighteners and dyes are chemical concoctions that aren’t good for you or for the environment. And, here’s the thing – you don’t need all that. Clean laundry smells like NOTHING. You know, the smell of fresh air… that kind of nothing.
Safe, natural laundry detergent doesn’t have to be pricey. I’ve been using Country Save for well over a year. It cleans our clothes, even the ones caked with red clay, and manages our diapers too. Country Save is free of perfumes, dyes or fillers that remain in your clothes after washing and all the ingredients (which are listed on the box!) are biodegradable and completely soluble. They even have independent lab results to prove it! Country Save is cheaper than most grocery store brands when you factor in the # of loads. It can be hard to find, but ask your natural foods store to stock it for you. My store orders me a box whenever I ask at no extra fee.
Alternative Fabric Softener
Traditional fabric softeners and dryer sheets are bahhhhhd news. Check out this article on Healthy Child, Health World, which explains how these products contain cancer-causing chemicals, respiratory irritants, and narcotics in untested combinations. No wonder dryer sheets give so many people instant headaches! If stiff laundry is causing you grief, try substituting expensive fabric softeners for a 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Just pour that vinegar in the rinse cycle or put it in your fabric softener cup. The smell will NOT linger, it’s dirt cheap, safe and it works really well! Some people love Nelli’s Dryer Balls , which will work when you machine dry. The best solution to static cling is to buy natural fiber fabrics (cotton, linen, wool, bamboo). Sorry
I’ve developed quite a dislike for plastic. It’s not pretty. It doesn’t feel good. It doesn’t decompose. My ugly plastic laundry basket even had sharp cutouts that would occasionally slice my hands. Sometime last year I decided to treat myself to a beautiful wicker laundry basket. I found a large basket like the one pictured at T.J. Maxx for a reasonable price. My husband repurposed the plastic version in the garage. My basket carries more and looks pretty sitting around the house full of laundry (oh, you don’t do that?). It’s the cherry on top of my natural laundry routine!