When I was little, one of the things I looked forward to about growing up was doing my own laundry… but not for the reason you’d think. I wanted scented laundry detergent and dryer sheets. My mom smartly used an unscented natural detergent that was closer to the homemade laundry detergent I use now, but I wanted the heavily scented chemical stuff that all my friends used.
I actually did use those artificially fragranced harsh detergents in college, and eventually realized that while they smelled good, they weren’t all they were cracked up to be and they gave me a headache.
When I had kids and made the switch back to natural detergent, I missed my clothes having that “clean” smell I had become so used to. Using essential oil scented soap in my DIY recipe solved this problem somewhat, but I realized that the scent didn’t stick around after the clothes were dried.
Natural Dryer Sheets
I stopped using conventional laundry detergent and dryer sheets, but desired a solution that would leave a fresh scent on clothes naturally.
I was also frustrated with the static cling that was tough to get rid of without dryer sheets. After some experimentation I found a two-fold solution that left clothes static-free and nice smelling without the harmful artificial fragrances:
- Homemade Natural Dryer Sheets
- Wool Dryer Balls
DIY Dryer Sheets:
I looked for a natural dryer sheet to buy, but could never find an option with ingredients I truly felt comfortable with. Just as with deodorant, toothpaste and all-purpose cleaner, homemade was the best, cheapest and easiest option.
I mainly wanted dryer sheets for the scent, so this was a really simple DIY project.
What you need:
- Cloth baby wipes (or old scraps of cloth)
- Essential oils of choice
- White Vinegar
- A glass jar with a wide lid or other storage container
What to do:
- Mix 1 cup of white vinegar with 25+ drops of essential oils of choice. I like Geranium, Citrus, Lavender and Mint.
- Fold the wipes or cloth scraps and place in your jar or storage container.
- Moisten but don’t saturate the cloth with the vinegar mixture (store extra in a bottle if you don’t need the entire mixture).
- Use one wipe/cloth per dryer load to freshen laundry. The vinegar smell will evaporate during drying and the essential oil scent will remain.
Wool Dryer Balls
Wool dryer balls help remove static cling, and also shorten the time it takes to dry a load of laundry. I couldn’t believe it took me so long to try them and I won’t ever go back. The mixture of natural dryer sheets and dryer balls has been the perfect solution for me.
With wool dryer balls, you can make them at home or buy them:
- Make them: This is a great tutorial for DIY Wool Dryer Balls
- Buy them: Or, get good quality dryer balls at a great price here.
What, if anything, do you use in your dryer to reduce static and freshen clothes?