It’s not that I hate ironing, but I’d rather use my time in other ways. Brew a cup of tea? Scroll my Instagram feed? Read blog posts about laundry? If you’d like to free up some time by not having to lug out your ironing board or keep your eyes glued to your little ones who naturally seem drawn to anything extremely hot, here are some tips for you.
1. Don’t overstuff the machine
I know what it’s like to put off doing laundry and now the only clean thing in your closet is that one slinky dress your friend convinced you to buy. Um, not exactly the kind of thing to wear to the grocery store. Sure, you might be tempted to wash all the laundry in one huge batch. Don’t do it! It’s one of the most common mistakes leading to not-so-clean and rumpled laundry. Instead, stick to manageable loads so clothes come out fresh and wrinkle-free.
2. Common threads
Always think of drying time in terms of fabric weight. To avoid wrinkles, you’ll want your clothes to dry at about the same rate. You don’t want the baby clothes mixed in with dad’s heavy jeans or work pants. The lighter clothes will dry faster and will get crushed by the heavier clothes. Keep this in mind when sorting the laundry to be washed.
3. Don’t overdo the drying
Some things, such as thick socks on a winter day, are nice to pull out from the dryer still piping hot. But over-drying can also lead to wrinkles in your clothes. Get acquainted with your dryer settings to figure out the optimal drying time for different items. Drying time varies based on the age and model of your machine and whether you have a gas dryer versus an electric dryer (gas dryers typically heat up and dry clothes faster). I like to pull out my clothes when they’re just barely dry, and sometimes I pull out wrinkle-prone garments while still a little damp. These finish drying flat and always end up wrinkle-free.
4. Mist wrinkles away
Life happens and sometimes you forget the clothes in the dryer for a day or two. Your clothes are going to be wrinkled, but not all is lost. Light wrinkles can be vanquished with a mist of water. This technique works best on light fabrics like chiffon or cotton blends. Fill a clean spray bottle with water and evenly mist the garment. Hang it up or let it dry flat and they’ll be looking smooth soon enough.
5. Steam powered
Good ol’ steam is my favorite way to erase wrinkles on clothes that can’t be saved otherwise. If you’re into steamy showers, bring the clothes into the bathroom with you and hang them on the door hook. The steam will help soothe those wrinkles. If that doesn’t work, I use my steamer. It gets the job done quick and there’s no risk of scorching my clothes with the iron.
6. Use dryer sheets
You already know what clothes look and feel like when you forget the dryer sheets. Don’t be the mom whose dress sticks to her underwear! Eliminate static cling by tossing a dryer sheet into the clothes dryer with each batch of laundry. There are many types of dryer sheets and a range of fresh scents. Who doesn’t want the sheets to smell like a field of lavender blooms? You can also use hypoallergenic dryer sheets that are free of dyes or perfumes if anyone in your family has sensitive skin. Dryer sheets help your laundry come out of the dryer fresh and less wrinkled; no ironing needed.
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