Get tips to make laundry day easier and more manageable as a busy mom. Find out what detergents are the best to use and how to set up your laundry schedule.
There is nothing “quick” about doing laundry, but I do think there are things you can do to make laundry day a bit easier on yourself. I have some tips, but would absolutely LOVE to hear your tips, as well.
Laundry is about my least favorite chore, so anything to make life easier is great by me.
Let me start by saying I still have the old fashioned washer and dryer…
No, not that old fashioned!
You know, the top loading washer old fashioned…so some tips are with that in mind. Some day my friends, some day I will get front loaders.
Have A Plan
Some people like having one laundry day each week. This is the day they focus on laundry. Others do one load each day. I personally like one day of the week to focus on laundry.
Whether you do it all in one day or do one load a day, stay home while it is laundry time. This is both for safety reasons (you don’t want any accidents–especially with a dryer) and for efficiency. You can’t promptly remove clothes if you aren’t home to remove them.
If you do it one day a week, think through the average week and choose the day you are most often home all day.
Things start best if I prepare the night before. Usually this just means I gather the dirty laundry from each room the night before. I like to start early in the morning and this way I won’t be held up because I left dirty laundry in someone’s room.
You could also sort the night before, but I don’t do that.
Since I do it all in one day, I find that starting earlier in the day makes it more likely that I can get it done that day. If I were doing one load, I would still start early. Otherwise I think I would forget about it as the hecticness of the day started.
Sort and Prep at Once
I sort the clothes and prep them all at the same time. While I am sorting, I turn things inside out that need to be and I check pockets. This way, I can just toss all of the clothes in the washer when it is time.
My first load of the day is always a load of jeans combined with any dark shirts I want to hang-dry. I also include light cotton clothes or socks to finish out the load.
My reason for this is because in my old-fashioned machines, the drying takes the longest. I hang dry at least half of my jeans, so this way my first load of the day dries quickly because by the time it makes it to the dryer, it is rather small.
Towels LastI do my towels last because they take the longest to dry. This way I don’t have clothes in the washer waiting while my towels dry.
Remove from Dryer Promptly
I remove my clothes from the dryer as soon as I can after they are dry. I then fold and sort into laundry baskets. This makes it so I rarely need to iron clothes.
Start Next Load Immediately
Even though my dryer takes longer than my washer, I start washing the next load as soon as I am done starting the dryer load and/or folding the load that just came out of the dryer. When I wait, I often forget until the dryer is almost done.
Hang All At Once…Or As You Go
I am not sure what is more efficient–to hang as you go or to hang all at once. I do it all at once after all laundry is done. Mostly this is because of kids rooms and napping children. I just go in the evening some time and put all of the laundry away.
Detergents and Other Supplies
I would love to hear what your favorite detergents and other supplies are!
I love Consumer Reports. Years ago, the detergent they recommended was Cheer. They also said the powder cleaned better than liquid in all detergents. So we used that for years.
A few months ago, I decided to try something new and tried the Arm and Hammer with Baking Soda and Oxiclean (linked is the liquid but I use the powder). I have been really happy with it.
Now, I keep an All Free and Clear liquid detergent for use on delicates.
I love Oxiclean. I add a scoop to every white load and usually to my towels as well. One day, the store was out of the powder so I tried the Oxiclean Max Force and I think I like those better, but it is more money overall I think, so I am still analyzing the whole situation.
Another great booster is Borax. I keep Borax around at all times because you can use it in a lot of homemade cleaners (like for scrubbing grout).
For stain removers, I like the Oxiclean spray right now. I have also used Zout and Spray and Wash in the past and have liked those. Fels Naptha is a fabulous bar of soap for getting stains out on whites for sure. I haven’t tried it on colored yet–just whites.
Another great stain remover and clothes freshener is plain old Baking Soda.
So far as bleach, I just get Clorox Splashless.
For dryer sheets, I use Bounce but have no good reason why.
Again, I would love to hear what you use and love! AND what you do to make laundry day easier.