Tips for doing less laundry
The Spruce reports that the average American family does 8–10 loads of laundry each week. That is a crazy amount of water and energy. What’s ironic is that most people despise doing laundry. So why do we insist on spending so much time and energy on it?
Washing your clothes less often won’t make you stink, what does stink is how much water and energy we consume doing laundry.
Here are a few tips on how to do less laundry:
1. Wear it again
It is not necessary to wash your shirts and pants after you wear them.
Many of us spend most of the day indoors without sweating very much or getting messy. As long as your shirts and pants still smell fine, it’s totally fine to put it back in the drawer or on the hanger for another round of wear. Clean My Space has a great rule of thumb for the number of wears per garment.
- One wear – socks, underwear, undershirts, gym gear
- 2-3 wears – t-shirts and tanks, long sleeve shirts, blouses, dress shirts, and pajamas
- 3-5 wears – lounge pants and leggings, sweaters, sweatshirts, bras (exception to the undergarment rule – but let a bra air out for a day before wearing or storing)
- 5-10 wears – dress pants, skirts, jeans, blazers
2. Load it up
Spend less water and energy by doing bigger loads of laundry.
Try not to do small loads. Plan out what you wear so that you can fill up the laundry basket before running that machine. Even if you put the setting on “small” that is still a lot of water, electricity and soap being used. More clothes in the washer actually results in a better clean, the reason being is that more clothes = more agitation, your clothes rub together and clean each other. So, yeah. Bigger (loads) is better. Looking for an eco-friendly laundry detergent? Look no further than Seventh Generation’s Concentrated Laundry Detergent, even the packaging is conscious!
3. Own more underwear
More underwear = less laundry days
Let’s be real, laundry day is often dictated by how many pairs of skivvies we have left. Buy several more pairs of sustainable underwear and save on laundry by doing it less frequently:
4. Don’t Separate lights and darks (except for whites)
The amount of bleed between mid-tone colors is negligible. The only loads that need separating are when you’ll be using bleach on whites. Check out this eco-friendly laundry bleach by Seventh Generation.
5. Hang it up
In most countries, dryers are a super luxury. An unnecessary one at that.
If you knew how much electricity your dryer sucked up, your jaw just might drop. It’s an assault to your electric bill and mother nature. Defend yourself from this attack by opting to hang dry your laundry instead. Many fancy hotels around Europe have retractable clotheslines that hang over the shower – if it’s good enough for European business class, it’s good enough for us.
Here are our top picks for clotheslines:
Retractable clothesline (Fancy)
Wooden drying rack (Natural)
Chrome drying rack (Sleek)
Retractable drying rack (Fancy & Nifty)
Outdoor T-Post clothesline (Classic)
Travel clothesline (Nifty)
So there you have it. That’s how you can lessen the load on your washer/dryer and yourself by doing less laundry! Saving you time/money and doing right by the environment. Now that’s a win-win.