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Laundry tips for sensitive skin

When you have sensitive skin, laundry can become ten times harder. Here are ten top laundry tips that will protect your sensitive skin. 

  • Use hypoallergenic products
  • Try liquid detergent 
  • Clean your appliance 
  • Use fabric softener
  • Separate your clothing
  • Follow the instructions
  • Wash new clothes
  • Hot wash your sheets
  • Rinse your washing 
  • Wear gloves

Use hypoallergenic products

Many laundry detergents use bleaches, dyes, and fragrances to make their products more effective. If you have sensitive skin, avoid these detergents as they can cause irritation. Instead, look for products that are specifically designed for sensitive skin. Alternatively, try making your own laundry detergent. 

Image by Mike Mozart

Try liquid detergent 

There isn’t a lot of difference between liquid detergent and powder detergent, however, when it comes to sensitive skin you should always try and buy a liquid detergent. Powder detergents will often leave a soapy residue on your clothing. If not removed, this residue can cause irritation when you wear your freshly washed clothes. Liquid detergent can also leave a residue, however, due to its liquid consistency, does not leave as much, therefore lessening the irritation caused. 

Clean your appliance 

Whether you have sensitive skin or not it is vital to clean out your washing machine after every two to three washes. The detergent draw of your washing machine can easily become clogged with excess laundry detergent that clumps together if not removed. This can encourage mould to grow in the draw. If you suffer with sensitive skin this mould can cause and insufferable amount of irritation. 

Use fabric softener 

Fabric softener works by smoothing the fibres that make up your clothes and making them soft to touch. If you have sensitive skin, specifically eczema, keeping your clothes soft will stop harsher materials from rubbing your skin and causing irritation. When buying a fabric softener, make sure that it is specifically designed for sensitive skin as some softeners can cause irritation by being overly fragrant. 

Separate your clothing 

When you wash your clothing it’s important to separate your clothes by their material. If you wash delicate fabrics, such as silk, with harsher fabrics, such as denim, the harsh fabric can damage the fibres of the more delicate material and make the clothing more abrasive. This can lead to your clothing causing irritation on your next wear. To avoid this, wash all of your delicate fabrics in one load and your harsher fabrics in another. 

Follow the instructions

It’s easy to over-pour your detergent, but when you have sensitive skin it’s best to be more cautious with how much you use. If too much detergent is used it can linger on your clothing and cause irritation. This can also happen when you over-fill your washing machine. To avoid this, try and use the correct amount of detergent and not over-fill your washing machine. 

Wash new clothes

After buying new clothes it’s always best to give them a wash before wearing them. Many stores will use starch or dyes on their clothing to make them last longer on the shop floor. These chemicals can cause irritation if not washed away. Before wearing any new item, put it on a quick wash just to ensure that your skin stays irritant-free. 

Hot wash your sheets 

Dust mites and allergens can cause a great amount of skin irritation, especially when the pollen count is high during the summer months. Avoid being surrounded by these irritants whilst sleeping by hot washing your bed sheets. The heat from the wash will kill any lingering allergens and leave you free to enjoy a dreamy sleep.

Rinse your machine

Regardless of whether you use liquid or powder laundry detergent, there will always be residue left over after a wash. To avoid this residing detergent from causing any irritation to your skin, put your machine on a rinse cycle before beginning your laundry. This will wash away any remaining detergent and leave you with a clean washing machine to wash your clothes in. 

Wear gloves

If you are hand washing your clothing you may want to wear a pair of gloves. Firstly, the gloves will protect your hands from being consistently exposed to your detergent, and therefore protect them from the risk of being irritated. Secondly, leaving your hands in water for a consistent amount of time will dry them out, which can lead to cracks and irritation. Wearing a pair of gloves will protect your hands from the water, therefore leaving them free from any potential irritation.

The best way to prevent your skin from becoming irritated when doing your laundry is by using a professional dry cleaning service. Book your Laundryheap dry cleaning slot by visiting the Laundryheap website or by downloading the free Laundryheap app. 


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How to be more environmentally conscious when doing laundry?

Laundry isn’t usually on the top of people’s list of ways to live a more environmentally conscious lifestyle. If you are someone who does multiple loads of laundry every week, it could be having a more substantial effect on the planet than you might think. The amount of water, energy, and products used when doing laundry can inevitably add up. 

Washing and drying your garments in a more environmentally conscious way can make for a more Eco-conscious household. These simple switches will not only reduce the environmental impact but will also save you money while you’re at it. 

  • Washing clothes in cooler temperatures
  • Always make sure you wash full loads
  • Get a green washing machine
  • Use green laundry detergent 
  • Wash by hand
  • Cut down on drying time
  • Hang clothes to dry
  • Don’t iron unnecessarily
  • Get the professionals to take care of it

Washing clothes in cooler temperatures

Up to 90 % of the energy used when doing your laundry involves just heating the water. Most of us know that having a long, hot shower is less environmentally friendly than a quick, short one. The same applies when doing your laundry. 

Washing clothes at 30°C instead of 40°C uses about 40% less energy. Doing your laundry at a lower temperature can also be better for your clothes. Exposing your clothes to hot temperatures can shorten the lifespan of the garment.

Always make sure you wash full loads.

Reducing the number of loads you do per week will save water and save you money. Even the most environmentally-efficient loads can use up to 40 gallons of water per load. 

Try reducing your loads as best you can throughout the week to reduce your carbon footprint. You could wear some clothes more than once before washing. This solution doesn’t go for all pieces of clothing, socks and underwear come to mind, but not tossing your jeans in the laundry basket after one wear is the first step to improving your laundry habit.

Invest in green machines

We are not suggesting that everyone throws out their current working washing machine and head to the shop to buy a new eco-friendly one today. If you are in the market for a new washer or dryer, buying a greener model can save energy and use less water, lowering your bills in the process. 

High-efficiency machines use between 20% to 60% less water and as little as 50% energy as traditional washing machines. Investing in a green washing machine will significantly reduce your environmental impact at home. 

washing machine

Use green laundry detergent 

Conventional washing detergents can be very damaging to the ecosystems where the dirty water we wash down the drain can end up. Standard laundry detergent contains phosphates which can have disastrous effects to marine life that comes in contact with it. 

When purchasing more Eco-friendly detergents, make sure you keep an eye out for labels that indicate the product is biodegradable and phosphate-free. These detergents are often more gentle on the skin, too. 

Wash by hand

We know this option will cause some people to wince.  Hand washing can be time-consuming, but there are some ways to make the process easier. Tools like a pedal washer can allow you to exercise while you wash your laundry, helping your body and the environment at the same time.

Hand washing can give you a sense of just how much laundry you’re going through weekly. As well as helping you see where you can cut back on the amount of laundry you do. 

Cut down on drying time.

Your dryer uses up a lot of energy – so anything you can do to cut down the time using this machine will help the environment. Not using your dryer as much can also save you money on your electric bill. 

Little things like cleaning the filter in your dryer can also save energy. If the filter is clogged, the clothes take longer to dry, meaning more energy wasted. 

Hang clothes to dry

One of the most optimal ways to cut down on time using your dryer is to hang your clothes to dry. If weather permits, hanging your clothes to dry on the line outside can take away 100% of the energy used when using your dryer. 

For people who live in a warmer climate drying clothes outside can be quick and easy. Those who live in wetter corners of the globe, can always line dry indoors all year round. Hanging clothes to dry will not only reduce energy, it will also cut your electric bill and make your clothes last longer.

Don’t iron unnecessarily

Ironing is top of most peoples most hated chores list. So why not cut it out when it isn’t necessary? Ironing consumes excess energy and can deteriorate the fabric on your clothing. 

We understand that even the most environmentally conscious of us still don’t want to rock up to a job interview with a creased shirt. To avoid looking scruffy, all you have to do is hang up your shirt straight after the wash cycle is complete. For materials that are more prone to creasing, like linen, just cut the final spin cycle on your wash, leaving more water in the fabric, resulting in fewer creases.

Get the professionals to take care of it

It might sound unconventional, but commercial washers and dryers tend to be more efficient than domestic machines because they are bigger and can take bigger loads. By using professionals like Laundryheap, you can lessen the number of loads, meaning less wasted energy and water at home. 


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How To Naturally Make Your Laundry Fragrant

If you want to avoid using fabric softener or any other chemicals to make your laundry smell nice, there are several natural methods you can use that will make your laundry smell fragrant.

  • Essential Oils 

The best way to get anything naturally fragrant is to use essential oils. Simply fill a spray bottle with water and add a few drops of an essential oil of your choice. Then, spray the natural formula on your clothes before putting them into the washing machine.

  • Baking Soda

Sodium bicarbonate or baking soda is a natural cleanser and deodoriser. For top loading machines, just add 1/2 a cup of baking soda along with your detergent whilst it is filling. For Front loading machines, add baking soda into the tray or inside the machine just as you would with laundry detergent.

  • Epsom Salt

Epsom salt is a natural pure mineral compound made up of magnesium and sulfate. It has numerous benefits including being a great laundry scent booster. Mix 1-2 cups of Epsom salt and 2 tablespoons of essential oil in a bowl or jar. Add 1-2 tablespoons of this mixture straight into your washer before adding clothes and wash as normal. 

  • Wool Dryer Balls

Wool dryer balls are a natural alternative to using fabric dryer sheets. They reduce drying time, wrinkles and can help make your clothes smell good, naturally, too. Just add a few drops of essential oil to a dryer ball before each use.

  • Air Dry

Naturally air drying, especially on sunny days, will help freshen up your clothes as the sun helps to eliminate bad odours, giving your clothes a refreshing smell.


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How To Remove Chewing Gum From Clothes

Chewing gum is the most annoying thing to get rid of when it gets stuck on…well… everything! It’s more irritating, however, when you get chewing gum stuck on your clothes as it’s more difficult to remove.

Nevertheless, there are several ways to remove chewing gum from your clothes.

How To Remove Chewing Gum From Your Clothes

  • Ice

Apply ice on the chewing gum affected area until it has fully hardened. Then use a spoon or blunt knife to immediately scrape it off. You can apply ice on both sides of the material for quicker removal.

Alternatively, you can put your garment into a zip lock bag, folded, with the gum stain facing outside and place it in the freezer overnight. You should be able to gently peel off the gum the following morning.

  • Heat

All you need to do is apply heat onto the gum, whether it be by hot air or by submerging in hot water. There are several ways you can use heat to remove gum:

Method 1: Blow Dryer

You can use a blow dryer, on the highest temperature setting, to melt away the chewing gum. Which you can then peel off from the surface.

Method 2: A Kettle

Boil some water in a kettle, and place the gum affected area over the mouth of the kettle, so it catches the steam. Leave it for a minute or so until the gum softens. Then, remove the gum with a toothbrush.

Method 3: Hot Water

Submerge gum affected area into a pot of hot water and scrape off the gum with a toothbrush or blunt knife. Let garment dry and repeat if necessary. 

Method 4: An Iron

Place the garment on a piece of cardboard, with the gum facing on the cardboard. Using an iron on medium setting, iron the back of the chewing gum so it transfers onto the cardboard. Repeat process until the gum is nearly removed.

  • Rubbing Alcohol

This method is a much simpler one. All you need to do is pour a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a rag or sponge and rub the gum with it.

  • Hairspray

Spray some hairspray on the gum so it hardens, and then scrape off the chewing gum with a blunt knife or spoon.

  • Vinegar

Heat up a cup of vinegar in the microwave, to just below a boil. Use a toothbrush and dip it into the vinegar and start brushing off the gum. Keep dipping and brushing until the gum comes off. This method works best when the vinegar is hot.

 

If you still struggle with removing the gum or simply don’t want the hassle of trying to, send it to laundryheap and we’ll be able to take that gum stain right off.