16 Things You Never Knew You Could Put in the Washing Machine
Stuffed animals and small toys? Sure. Yoga mats and baseball caps? Bring them on.
Place each stuffed animal in its own mesh laundry bag and set your machine to wash and rinse. Use cold water (warm or hot water could melt the toy’s glue) and half the regular amount of detergent, advises Housewife How-Tos. Run the animals through a second rinse cycle to remove all the soap, and allow them to air dry. Fluff fur as needed. Here are some more tips for cleaning difficult-to-clean household objects.
Add oven mitts and potholders to your load of dishtowels and washcloths. Here are some other common household items you aren’t washing nearly often enough.
Spray caps with stain remover and let them sit for five minutes, suggests blogger MomCrieff. Run the hats on a short cycle using cold water. Reshape each hat and allow them to air dry.
Remove the laces from canvas or nylon sneakers and slip them into a cotton pillowcase where they won’t get tangled. Take out any inner soles or padding from the sneakers and toss the shoes and pillowcase into your washer (if you’re concerned about the shoes causing a racket, throw in a few towels as well). Add the regular amount of detergent, plus a dash of vinegar to deodorize. Set your machine on a cold-wash delicate cycle. Allow the shoes and shoelaces to air dry. Check out these tips that’ll make your laundry chore way easier.
Load small toys such as Legos, bath-time puffers, or the ball your dog uses to play fetch into a mesh laundry bag. Run them through a cool delicate cycle to get them squeaky clean. Learn which objects you’re probably washing too much.
Wash pillows two at a time in a warm-water gentle cycle. To ensure you’ve washing out all the soap, add an extra cold-water rinse and spin, advises Good Housekeeping. To fluff things up, dry the pillows on low heat, along with a few rubber dryer balls.
Plastic shower curtains
Clean a plastic shower curtain with a regular amount of detergent. Add two or three bath towels for extra cleaning power. Hang to dry. Learn some more tricks to clean your bathroom more quickly and efficiently than you are now.
Backpacks and lunch boxes
Open all of your backpack’s pockets and check for any items that might be hidden. If there are large pieces of crumbs or debris, use your vacuum cleaner’s crevice attachment to do a thorough pre-cleaning. Put your backpack into a laundry bag or pillowcase and wash it on a gentle cycle in cold water with a small amount of gentle detergent. Allow to air dry. Learn some surprising things you didn’t know you could clean in the dishwasher.
If the care instructions on your mat don’t advise against putting it in the washing machine, you most likely can. “Throw [your mat] in the washing machine once a month. No soap. Then into the dryer on medium to high heat,” Lauren Imparato, founder of I.Am.You yoga in New York City, told Well+Good.