- Home Cleaning
You know what it’s like when you’re doing one thing, and all of a sudden you get an idea for another? That was me this weekend when we had to replace the dryer vent in the laundry room. I was back there fiddling with the clamp on the machine, thinking to myself you know, it’s been a while since we’ve talked about laundry on the ol’ MUYM blog, let’s do that!
Of course the ideas started flowing and it was hard to pick just one, but after discussing what we love most about laundry, the answer was simple: we love the warm, fresh smell of a nice fluffy load straight out of the dryer.
What we don’t like are all the chemicals in dryer sheets such as chloroform, pentane, and benzyl alcohol, which have been associated with everything from nervous system disorders to depression.
So we thought we’d take the time to share with you how to make your own all-natural, DIY dryer sheets that will do the job just as well, if not better than those brand name ones you’ve been buying at the store.
To start, you’re going to need a few things:
- White vinegar
- Scraps of fabric from old sheets, dishtowels, t-shirts, etc.
- Your favorite smelling essential oil
- Glass container that you can reseal, such as a mason jar, or clean spaghetti sauce jar.
Got all that stuff ready to go? Awesome! Here’s what you do.
1. The Swatches
Cut some square swatches (try saying that 5 times fast) from your old batch of fabric. They don’t have to be super big, but you don’t want them too small, either. We’ll say 3 to 5 inches should do the trick. If you want, you can use a sewing machine to sew around the edges so they’ll last longer, but you don’t have to. These will still do the trick either way.
2. The Mix
Mix up the fabric softener solution by pouring a half cup white vinegar into your glass container, along with 8-10 drops of your favorite essential oil. You can use lavender, lemon, orange, eucalyptus, cinnamon, whatever your heart desires. Seal up the container and give it a good shake.
3. The Soak
Next, toss your swatches of fabric into the jar, and seal it up. If you want to use some right away, give it a shake to soak the fabric, otherwise you can just let it sit and allow the swatches to absorb the mixture on their own.
4. The Load
When you’ve tossed your clean clothes in the dryer, simply ring out 3-5 squares and throw them in with your load, letting those sweet, sweet, DIY fabric softener sheets do their work.
Pretty easy, right? No harsh chemicals, money saved on dryer sheets, and the best part is they are totally reusable, so once you’ve dried your clothes, you can toss those squares back in the jar to let them absorb some more of the mixture for next time.
These work great because vinegar is an all natural softener, as well as a natural static reducer. Combined with the essential oils, it will leave your clothes with a subtle hint of your favorite smell without all the toxic chemicals found in dryer sheets, and that’s a win-win solution for everybody!
So the next time you run out of dryer sheets, don’t bother buying some more, okay? Take a few minutes to craft your own the way you want them to smell, and you’ll be good to go for your next load of laundry. In fact, they might even make you want to do laundry more often, and whoever said clean clothes were a bad thing?