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. You can also use cornstarch to get stuffed animals clean.
Check the label on your removable mop head to see if it can go in the washing machine—most are made to be removable for exactly this purpose. If you're using a Swiffer, give your wipes a simple hand wash to ready them for a second use. And don't miss these genius ways to reuse household items.
Add oven mitts and potholders to your load of dishtowels and washcloths. They aren't just useful for touching hot surfaces, though. Check out these other four uses of oven mitts.
Spray caps with stain remover (here are some homemade stain removal solutions) 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 (here are 95+ other household uses for vinegar). Set your machine on a cold-wash delicate cycle. Allow the shoes and shoelaces to air dry.
Load small toys such as Legos (by the way, have you seen this amazing Lego art?), 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.
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. Here's why you should be washing your pillows way more often.
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. Here are 3 other ways to wash your shower curtains.
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. (Here are 4 easy ways to organize your kid's backpack.)
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. You can do these energizing yoga stretches in bed.