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  • Writer's pictureKelly Bazzle

Laundry Stripping: How To Make Your Sheets and Towels Feel and Smell Brand New

If you’re anything like me, during quarantine, you’ve been stumbling upon crazy cleaning hacks and organizing hacks on social media. I feel like I am constantly trying new things to find a “quarantine high.” Well, laundry stripping is gross, but it’s also insanely satisfying!

What’s a “quarantine high?” It’s something that makes you feel satisfied and accomplished amid this current situation. We’re all feeling so many emotions through this pandemic and everyone reacts and adjusts differently. I’m the type that needs to find a project to complete. When I finish a project, it helps my mental health and my productivity.

How Did I Find Out About This Method?

So, back to it, I was scrolling through instagram and I saw a few friends posting about laundry stripping and I was totally intrigued (Shout out to Megan Bush). They were sharing videos and photos of their laundry in a tub full of water with a mixture of detergents. The mixture was helping pull the gross stuff from their laundry. Then, I noticed they were spending a lot of time letting their laundry soak. This whole process takes about 4 to 6 hours.

If you want some more QuaranClean hacks that are totally addicting, be sure to follow @gocleanco on instagram!

What is laundry stripping?

It’s also known as strip washing and it’s a way to remove detergent and hard water residue, and even your body oils, I know, gross, that have collected in your laundry over time. It’s a mixture of hot water, Borax powder, Arm and Hammer Washing Soda, Tide powder detergent, and Calgon Water Softener liquid. You just mix it up like a witch with a magic potion, in your bathtub. This whole process is best for your towels, sheets, work out clothes and even shoes. Think of it like a detox for your laundry.

Does It Live Up To The Hype?

All I know is after I stripped and then washed some older towels I had in my guest bathroom (they were clean but just hanging out under the sink), they were softer and they smelled brand new. You know how after time, towels just start to smell a little funky and feel a little dingy? All of that was gone. And sometimes, those smells, can actually be caused by using too much laundry detergent over time. And if you have a lot of soap residue in your laundry, that just collects gross dust and dirt and oils over time and it all builds up in your laundry. Who knew! Too much soap could do more harm than good to your fabrics that you’re constantly washing.

So ultimately, if you strip your laundry and then learn that you were in fact using too much detergent, you could avoid ever having to do this again. All you need to do is use less laundry detergent and fabric softener when you wash your towels, sheets, etc.

LAUNDRY STRIPPING WARNING: Don’t strip bright colored clothing or anything delicate. This process is for the stuff that is tough and definitely not for your favorite Lilly Pulitzer or Vineyard Vines clothes. It could cause colors to bleed, so you want to make sure you’re not throwing a red towel in with your white towels or your favorite bright pink work out top with your lighter ones.

Here’s the Laundry Stripping Recipe:

Laundry Stripping Ingredients, Tide, Borax, Arm & Hammer Washing Soda, Calgon Water Softener

Tide Powder Borax Powder Arm and Hammer Washing Soda Calgon Water Softener

  1. 1/4 Cup Borax powder

  2. 1/4 Cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda

  3. 1/4 Cup Calgon Water Softener Liquid

  4. 1 Full Scoop of Tide Powder (has to be powder, not liquid)

  5. Fill your bathtub with very hot water (basically turn the water on to the hottest temp, you don’t need boiling water or anything crazy like that)

  6. Place your items you want to strip in the bathtub

  7. Mix your ingredients in a bowl and sprinkle it all over your items

  8. Take a wooden spoon (or a toy baseball bat, golf club lol, anything that can stir this stuff around easily) and stir the laundry so that the mixture dissolves into the water

  9. Soak the laundry in the bathtub for at least 4 hours, 6 hours at most

  10. Stir the laundry every hour to make sure the mixture is really penetrating every part of your laundry. You will start to notice the water around your laundry getting more and more gross with each hour that passes. This is grossly satisfying.

Laundry Stripping towels to remove grime, oil, residue and mildew
  1. After you’re done, get a black trash bag or a big plastic container to carry it to the laundry room. This liquid is super slippery and if you get any on the floor on the way to the laundry room, you’re going to bust it, hard.

  2. Ring out all of the laundry (I definitely broke a sweat doing this, it’s incredible how heavy this stuff can get when it’s soaked) and transport it to the wash machine. Wash the laundry like normal and don’t go heavy on the laundry detergent, because that’s one of the reasons we’re here. The awesome part, is that this whole process will save you time and money.

  3. Once you’ve let the laundry wash and dry, you’ll instantly notice a difference. Let me know how it goes for you! I want to see your videos and photos, so tag me on Instagram! @kellybazzle

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