I love when I run out of cleaning and household supplies because it gives me a great opportunity to try my hand at more DIY projects. This one is easy, frugal and environmentally friendly – everything I’m looking for on my journey to self sufficiency and homesteading.
Of course we could just do without dryer sheets, but we (especially my husband) love fresh smelling laundry. Once learning about what’s in dryer sheets and fabric softener, I decided that I don’t ever want to use them again. Full to the brim of cancer causing chemicals, ingredients known to cause detrimental effects to the central nervous system and not to mention toxic emissions from your dryer vent (my vent blows right into my front garden!) – I don’t want this stuff in my dryer and I don’t want it touching my skin or my son’s! It is definitely time to ditch the dryer sheets.
What You’ll Need
- Fabric of some kind (old t-shirt, bedsheet, dish towels etc.)
- Mason jar (1 litre)
- 3/4 cup of vinegar
- 1/4 cup of water
- Essential oils (optional for scent)
- Small piece of parchment or wax paper
First you’ll want to cut up your fabric into squares. I made mine about 6×6 inches. If you think the fabric will fray then you should use pinking shears or sew the edges of the fabric.
In your jar mix your vinegar, water and essential oil (about 16-20 drops of your favourite essential oils). Orange, lemon, lavender or tea tree are favourites, but honestly you can use almost any essential oil as long as it doesn’t contain too much resin (like myrrh, frankincense, patchouli etc.) I tried rosemary and lavender for my first batch and it smells great!
Now you want to put your fabric pieces into the jar. You can stuff it pretty full.
Place a piece of parchment or wax paper between the lid and the jar. You don’t want vinegar coming in contact with the metal/rubber on the lid.
Give the jar a good shake and don’t worry if all the sheets don’t get wet right away. Thanks to osmosis all the sheets will soak up the vinegar/water over time.
How to Use Them
Pull out 3-4 squares (you may need more for larger loads of laundry), wring out any excess liquid and toss them in your dryer with clothes.
Set them aside when you pull out your clothes to fold.
Once your jar is empty check to see how much liquid is left. If you need to make up another batch go right ahead and do that before you add your fabric back in. If you have enough, just stuff them back in the jar and do it all over again!