Thrifty habits come in all shapes and sizes. There are big things you can do like not eating out, buying items on sale, and using coupons, and then there are little things that anyone can do that will save money over time. These lifestyle adjustments are where the real money is saved! Today as I was doing laundry I felt inspired to share with you my laundry habits that help me to save in every way possible! These are easy to do and you can start doing them today!
- I get stains out immediately. Stained clothing items are sprayed with a stain remover (I like Shout!) and washed as soon as possible. I even keep an extra spray bottle of stain remover on my daughter’s dresser specifically for her clothes. Stained items are not put in the dirty laundry basket, but are placed on top of the washer so that I don’t forget about them. I also never dry a stained item until I’m sure that the stain has been washed out.
- I don’t overload my washing machine. An overloaded washing machine is not washing effectively or efficiently. A properly loaded machine will get all the items clean on the first wash and will require less maintenance.
- I use powdered laundry detergent. When you buy liquid detergent you’re paying for really expensive water! No thanks!
- I use the appropriate amount of detergent. This is crucial! Laundry detergent is so expensive! Whether you make your own or buy the best detergent on the market, this is an easy place to save big bucks! Do not EVER fill your scoop or cup all the way to the top, or even the top line. It’s not necessary! Laundry detergent companies want you to use more than you need so that you end up buying their product more frequently. Don’t play into their hands!
- I use the appropriate amount of water. By overfilling your washing machine with water you are wasting two precious resources- water and money! The correct amount of water for any size load is one that looks like a clothing stew- not a soup and not chili, a stew! Too much room to swim and your clothes don’t get agitated enough, not enough water and your clothes won’t get properly cleaned or rinsed! Both situations lead to having to wash your items again and/or your clothes falling apart sooner than necessary!
- I use the appropriate cycle. Not all wash cycles are created equally! Towels and blue jeans need a different cycle than t-shirts and underwear! Don’t use Permanent Press for everything in your laundry basket!
- I remove my items from the washer as promptly as possible. Life happens, and we’ve all forgotten clothes in the washer, myself included! But I really try to avoid doing this as much as I can! Leaving clothes in the washer for an extended amount of time, especially overnight, can lead to stinky clothes and the need for an additional wash! Don’t wash twice what you could wash just once!
- I hang dry a lot of my clothes. Blue jeans take so much energy to dry, that I wash those separately and then let them hang dry. Once they’re dry I give them a 15 minute tumble in the drier to soften them up and remove any stiffness or lint. I also hang dry materials that are delicate or have a tendency to shrink, such as Forever 21 tank tops, clothes from Target, and clothes from discount stores like Marshall’s and TJMaxx. I love those stores, but almost everything I buy from there either falls apart in the drier or shrinks, so I hang dry! Doing so uses less electricity and helps my purchases go further. (I use this contraption and I love it!)
- I put the clean clothes away as soon as possible. Again, I’m not going to lie to you and same I’m the Laundry Queen who always has her laundry washed and put away in the same day, but I really do try! By having my clothes put away and not sitting in the drier or laundry basket I’m able to see what clothes I actually have with a glance in my closet or dresser. This keeps me from buying duplicate items and also helps eliminate wardrobe frustration.
- I do one load of laundry every day. This keeps me from getting super backed up in the laundry department, and also helps prevent me from getting burned out doing laundry all day long for days at a time! By doing just one load a day, start to finish, I stay on top of the laundry and don’t find myself procrastinating as much.
So there you go! 10 easy things you can starting doing today to save money while doing laundry! Everyone has to wash clothes, so you might as well save some cash while you do it!