One of the best things after finishing your bath is to wipe yourself clean with a soft and fluffy towel. However, even the best of towels, after a while, tend to become stiff, scratchy, and not very absorbent. This happens because fabric softeners have loads of chemicals that build up the fibers in the towels. The residues from dryer sheets don’t help, too.
Fortunately, a few simple tricks can help make even the crustiest of towels feel like new. No, these aren’t expensive ideas we have borrowed from five-star hotels and industry insiders. These suggestions are inexpensive and can be used by anyone. Yes, we’ve put together some tips that will help you make your crusty towels feel soft and fluffy again while also increasing their longevity. Take a look.
1. Add baking soda
Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is widely used for cleaning a variety of household items. Aside from cooking, baking soda can also be used to help soften your towels. It will help loosen up fibers in them and also remove any chemicals or grime. Just mix half a cup of baking soda along with a normal detergent dose for best results.
Additionally, baking soda also helps get rid of any musty or mildew odors that may have built up on your towels which happens when they are kept damp for a little too long.
2. Don’t go overboard with detergent
While using detergent to wash your towels is obviously useful, you shouldn’t go overboard with it either. Over-soaping can make clothing dingy. Towels, especially, can become stiff with too much detergent as they start to accumulate soapy residue that can make them crunchy. Ideally, it would be better if you use half the recommended amount. Less detergent will also ensure that our machine’s rinse cycle will have an easier time washing out the last annoying bits of soap from the towel with much more comfort.
3. Toss in a few tennis balls in the dryer
This is a pretty useful method that hasn’t really caught on but we suggest you give it a try once. Get hold of a couple of unused and clean tennis or dryer balls and toss them inside the dryer along with your towels. Experts say that the balls will help create gaps in between your towels as the dryer spins, preventing them from bunching up together and allowing more hot air to circulate for faster drying. The tennis balls bouncing around inside the dryer also helps remove the lumps from the towels that you would otherwise need to pat out by hand. Furthermore, as the soft surface of the tennis balls runs over the towels, they should help to fluff them up.
4. Lighten the load
This is a mistake that a lot of us make. Overloading your washing machine with all the towels in your house will be counter-productive. This doesn’t just strain your machine but also prevents it from getting sufficient room to rinse out all the dirt and detergent from your towels. Another thing you must understand is that crowded towels won’t have enough room to move around properly inside the dryer. This will mean that the heat will be unable to reach the tangled creases.
Ideally, putting in two or three bath towels at a time, along with hand towels and washcloths, should be good for any standard washing machine. Before putting them in, however, make sure that you shake each towel out properly to open up their fibers.
5. Use vinegar instead of fabric softener
Fabric softeners shouldn’t be used for washing towels regularly. They contain silicon and oils that make towels less absorbent. Vinegar would be a much better alternative. Many experts regard vinegar as a laundry workhorse superstar. Using one cup of white vinegar about every six weeks will soften your towels. Vinegar works by first removing the soapy residue that makes towels feel rough and thus restores their absorbency. This is a much better alternative than coating them with synthetic chemicals. Vinegar also gets rid of bacteria that would have accumulated in your towel, keeping it clean and germ-free.
That being said, you should exercise caution while using vinegar in your washing machine. The rubber parts inside a washing machine (and other home appliances) can be damaged by vinegar if you overuse it. Ideally, 1/4 cup of distilled white vinegar used in the fabric softener compartment of your machine after every couple of months shouldn’t cause any damage.
Read more about the household items that you should never clean with vinegar here.
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