I’m pleased to have Danielle from Laundry Care guest post at Mama’s today. She’s an experienced laundress and I couldn’t agree more with her assessment of white vinegar.
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I’m often asked by friends and family what my favorite laundry product is. With the endless choices available I can see why people want guidance on the best products to use.
Take a stroll down the cleaning aisle of your local general store and you’ll encounter everything from detergent to stain treatment, from softeners to brighteners. To make things even more complicated, the expanding varieties of different fabrics, both natural and synthetic, used in clothing has made the quest for the one perfect product combination seem futile.
Before you throw your hands in the air and grab whatever’s on sale, there is one product I stand by that isn’t even in the laundry aisle. It’s commonly found with the salad dressings and it’s a very reasonable $3 to $6 per gallon.
The product I’m referring to is white vinegar.
The list of benefits that white vinegar provides to your clothing exceeds that of any commercial cleaner out there. Combine this with the fact that it’s nontoxic and green and you’ve got the perfect laundry product.
Convincing Reasons to use White Vinegar in the Wash
1.) It brightens. If you’re looking for a gentler alternative to color-safe bleach, white vinegar is your answer. It helps keep your colors bright without the risk of lifting dye.
2.) It whitens. The acidic properties of white vinegar help restore dingy whites to their original bright state. All you need to do is fill a bucket with hot water, add 2 cups of white vinegar and let dingy clothes soak overnight. By morning, your old clothes will be noticeably whiter. As an added bonus, this same property also kills bacteria that can sometimes be found on clothes.
3.) It deodorizes. Clothes can be a magnet for smells in the environment. Smoke, pet odor and overall funkiness can be easily removed by adding a ½ cup in the rinse cycle.
4.) It softens. The advantage white vinegar has over commercial softeners is that it softens and fluffs without leaving a residue build-up on your clothes. Commercial softeners used repeatedly in the wash can form a waxy build-up that breaks down the fabric’s integrity over time.
5.) It removes stains. Mix a solution of equal parts white vinegar and warm water to remove moderately saturated stains or apply a paste of baking soda and white vinegar to muscle out stubborn stains. The mildness of the vinegar means there’s no risk of destroying the fabric or dye unlike other stain treatment products.
How else can you use white vinegar?
In addition to the reasons listed above it cleans your washer, helps remove pet hair from clothes, reduces static, and removes that mildew smell you get when clothes have been mistakenly left in a washer. What other product can do all this at such a low cost?
There are a lot of great options when it comes to laundry but if you want something that is both versatile and is multi-purpose, my recommendation is to add ½ cup of white vinegar to each load.
Danielle Douglas has 15 years of experience in cleaning clothes. She is the owner of Laundry Care, a premier wash and fold service provider.