I did more laundry during those two weeks than I have done in the last two months combined!
In our successful effort to get out of debt I learned a valuable lesson:
While it's important to save money wherever possible, whenever possible, there are times where it's much more important to pay a little extra to get QUALITY items that will last AND work well!
My laundry concoction (as I call it) is an absolutely lifesaver. It's full of mostly higher-priced items, but here's why I love it anyway:
- I can let stains sit on our clothes for weeks before washing, and they ALWAYS come out. Blood, grass, food, juice, you name it.
- I tend to buy “cheap” clothes (sometimes cheap quality, sometimes cheap in price only). I want them to last, and this concoction is gentle and effective.
- It doesn't fade colors.
- It smells great.
- It's high efficiency, so it lasts forever because I barely have to use any!
- I buy them in bulk from Costco, with coupons.
- While my washer/dryer is only 4 years old (pretty new), it's not the top of the line in any regard. This works great even with my budget appliances.
Here are my unbeatable laundry favorites:
The thing I love most about it is that no matter how large the load, I pretty much always do it to line 1 (the smallest line on the cup) and it is ALWAYS enough. I never have to use very much.
I wash most of my loads on warm/cold and on normal cycle with a medium spin. I wash my darks and delicate fabrics on cold/cold, and my whites on hot/hot.
I don't use this for loads I don't really care about, like old towels, rags, and sheets. I use cheap detergent for that (see very bottom).
This doesn't fade my clothes, gets stains out, and smells good. I noticed a huge difference the very first time I washed a load with it, and never looked back!
Once again, I rarely ever go above Line 1 on the cup; a little is all you need, even with a big load!
I also buy this at Costco, they always have coupons. In fact, they have a coupon for it this month, $3 off I believe. Stock up!
I also don't use this for loads I don't care about like old towels, sheets, and rags.
Regardless, my tip is that I ALWAYS use fabric softener, for every single load. Always. Even the old towels, sheets, and rags that I use the cheap detergent for (see bottom).
Once again, I don't have to use a large amount for each load, but I use it for every load. Even jeans. I line-dry most of my personal clothes, so fabric softener is a must. And even with the clothes I dry in the dryer, fabric softener makes all the difference in the world.
It makes them smell better, stay fresher longer, and makes them WAY softer. I am addicted to fabric softener.
I actually don't use dryer sheets any more! I tried NOT using them (because I use fabric softener) and it works great without them! If I do a load of towels or sheets I will use 1/2 a sheet, but for my normal loads, I don't use any and notice NO difference.
Once again, I have used many different kinds, I am pretty impartial to one particular brand. However, I insist on using them. I use the Kirkland brand right now. They aren't the best smelling sheets in the world, but they do the job well enough.
Yes, I know some people think it's redundant to use them AND fabric softener, but I notice a big difference in my clothes when I don't use a dryer sheet! I use them for every single dryer load, even if it's a load that I don't care about.
They help with static, keep my clothes less wrinkled, and makes them smell better and makes them softer.
Remember my tips with dryer sheets?? My biggest tip: I ALWAYS RIP THEM IN HALF. ALWAYS! You do NOT need an entire sheet, even if your load is huge!
I buy this from Costco also. It comes with a huge refill gallon jug, and a sprayer. I bought one and it's lasted me for 2 years now. Trust me, it's worth the investment.
- Fill my sink with piping hot water,
- add a cup of cheap detergent (see next),
- add a bunch of bleach (eyeball it)
- add my clothes,
- stir it all up, and let it soak for quite a few hours.
- I empty the sink, then throw the clothes in the washer with my Tide, a little more bleach, fabric softener, and wash on hot/hot like normal. You can't believe how brown and gross my sink water is after letting my whites soak, even if they don't look that dirty!
We moved, and I got a new front-loading washer. It has a “whitest-whites” setting where it pre-soaks it for me. It's been working great, so I actually don't soak my whites in the sink any more, so I guess it just depends on your washer. Regardless, soaking is great with whites!
- A) aren't that dirty or
- B) I don't care if the stains don't come all the way out or
- C) are old and stained and no one sees them anyway!