Laundry Hacks Every College Student (And Adult) Should Know

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My sisters are in college. Finally. Took them long enough.

One’s a freshman, the other’s a senior. The senior can whack the golf ball.

And the freshman… yeah, she’s also talented. At making too many friends. Wouldn’t be surprised if she called me in three months, asking me how to deal with college boys and their immaturity.

My advice? Good luck. And carry pepper spray.

The senior doesn’t need pepper spray. She has guns. On her arms.

Anyway, I helped both with their college papers, since they think I’m a professional writer.

I purposely gave them B’s on their assignments. They weren’t paying me anything. And it’s college. No one cares about papers.

But people care about their hygiene and smelling good. One way college students can smell good is through doing their laundry properly. No one likes smelling like a grizzly bear. Or having puke stains on their favorite shirts. Or spilling ketchup all over their pants before a test.

This isn’t limited to college kids, either. I’m an adult (haha yeah right), and I still struggle with laundry. I should have listened to my parents.

Oh well. I’ll listen to someone else.

With help from Cotton Incorporated, let’s go through some simple laundry hacks we all can employ:

Clothespins laundry

Softeners Aren’t The Best

Stains can set in when you use a fabric softener. If the only detergent we have in our closet contains some fabric softner, let’s not directly spill the liquid stuff on the clothes. Put the soap in first, then fill the clothes in later.

Measure Your Detergent

There’s a reason the cap on our detergent has lines on the inside. Measure correctly, because holy crap, if we use too much, it could ruin our clothes. Not enough detergent is not good, either, since the dirt will get trapped in our clothes.

Fun fact: If you don’t know how much to put in, a good rule of thumb is to USE YOUR COLLEGE EDUCATION and READ THE LABELS.

Keep Towels Fluffy — And Absorbent

Remember coming home and smelling the towels after mom washed them regularly? And how soft and fluffy they were?

We can recreate that magic again by not using dryer sheets as often and not putting in too much softener stuff. Use a dryer sheet once every three to five (3 to 5) laundry cycles, or about once a month, to keep our towels soft. We could also throw in the towel last and reuse a dryer sheet that’s been through the dryer cycle two times already.

The Secret Ingredient for Laundry

No, it’s not vodka. It’s vinegar.

A half-cup of vinegar does it all. Whitens the white clothes. Kills germs. Gets rid of odors. Makes our clothes so fluffy we’re all gonna die.

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Who Said Anything About Washing It?

If you’re like me and wear cotton often, you probably don’t have to wash it. Cotton doesn’t absorb odor. Besides, it’s cotton. That stuff shrinks like a nervous freshman walking up to the front of the class to give a speech. We could probably dampen our clothes, then re-dry to keep them happy.

Yes, clothes have feelings.

Don’t Overload Our Machines

If we overload the machines, our clothes won’t get washed. Hell, they might get torn into pieces. And we could break the machine. If we break the machine, we’d have to go back to the olden days and take our thimbles and go to work.

Or, as my other Grandma would say, “warsh” the clothes.

So, how much is too much? If you’re a witch and you’re stuffing your clothes into the machine with a broomstick, it’s too much. Make sure our clothes can move freely, like a person wearing their birthday suit.

Dryers Are Overrated

Buy a drying rack. Personally, it saves me from putting quarters in the dryer. Some of us have access to a free dryer. In which case, congrats. You win at life. Bow down to the gods who bestowed a beautiful bounty unto your presence.

Hahah Bounty is a detergent. Just realized that. Whoa.

[Editor’s note: my mom read my blog and texted me, saying, “Um, honey, I don’t think Bounty is a laundry detergent….. maybe paper towels.” The Ovals of Life team regrets the error.]

Also, if we buy detergent that smells good, it’ll make our room smell better.

We can also save the environment and energy costs by not putting clothes in the dryer. Al Gore would be proud.

Yet, we could buck up and spend the money to throw our clothes in the dryer. How else are we going to have sex on top of a hot, tumbling, vibrating dryer if there aren’t any clothes inside? It’s a two-for-one deal.

A Wrinkle In the Plan to Do Laundry…

Wrinkles suck. They don’t look good. Or so I’ve been told.

If you’re looking to get wrinkles out of your clothes, here are some tips:

  • Hate irons? Take a wet washcloth, dab your clothes and put the clothes into the dryer for 5-10 minutes.
  • Put clothes in the bathroom during a hot shower. When the mirror fogs up, clothes will smooth out, and there will be a scary monster hiding behind you when you wipe the condensation off the mirror. Or a creepy guy. Only take a hot shower if you’re prepared to star in a horror movie.
  • Don’t over-dry. Take the clothes out of the dryer halfway through the cycle and hang them up.
  • Hair straightener? Yeah, use one to keep the collars crisp. Can’t find a hair straightener? Ask a girl for one. Guys: It’s a great conversation starter. Might end up getting married. Who knows?

OMG. That’s a great love story idea.

Once upon a time, I needed a hair straightener since I didn’t have an iron. So I asked the pretty lady down the hall for one. Next thing you know, we’re sharing our thoughts on global warming…


Speaking of ideas, thanks to Cotton Incorporated and their marketing team for giving me another blog idea. I was running out of fumes, and they came to the rescue.

If you want more information, check out their handy guide here.