How to Clean Tough Dryer Messes: Forget to check just one pocket, and you might have a serious mess on your hands.
Use laundry soap to clean up clothing dyes. Make a thick paste with laundry soap and some water, and apply it to the stain. Let it sit for 5–10 minutes, then rub the stain away with a cloth. After the stain is removed, wipe the drum clean with a damp cloth.
Scrape away gum or candy with an old credit card. Gently scrape as much of the mess as you can with a plastic putty knife or credit card, being careful not to scratch the coating on the drum. If any mess remains, apply ice for a minute or two. Once the gunk hardens, scrape gently with the putty knife or credit card. For tough messes, pour white vinegar on a cloth, and lay it on the sticky spots for 20–30 minutes. This should loosen up the mess.
Remove ink and marker stains with vodka. Spray the vodka liberally on the drum, and wipe or scrub clean with a white cloth or sponge.
Clean up melted crayon, lipstick, or lip balm with damp towels. Toss old, damp towels into the dryer, and run the machine on high heat for 5 minutes. This softens the mess, and it will wipe up easily with a few sprays of white vinegar or vodka and a towel. Once the mess is gone, wipe the drum again with a towel dipped in water.
Make your own cheap and effective all-natural wrinkle-release spray. This DIY wrinkle releaser is perfect for when you’re on the go and don’t have the time, or the desire, to break out the electric clothes iron.
2 cups water
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon hair conditioner
Dry delicates with a salad spinner. For small items of clothing too delicate to go in the dryer, pop them in the salad spinner to remove excess water before laying flat to dry.
Unshrink clothes with hair conditioner. Fill a bucket or sink with warm water, add 1 tablespoon of hair conditioner, and stir with your hand to combine. Soak the garment in the mixture for 20–30 minutes. Remove, and gently squeeze excess water out of the fabric. Don’t wring, or you may cause wrinkles and odd shapes to form in the fabric. Lay the garment flat on a clean, dry bath towel, then roll it up in the towel and squeeze to remove more moisture to make the item damp instead of wet. Replace the towel with another dry towel, and start stretching the garment back to its original size and shape. Allow to air-dry. To speed up the drying process, either hang outside or set in front of a fan. Air-dry for future washes, as well, to prevent the garment from shrinking again.
Fluff down after washing with tennis balls. Throw 2–3 tennis balls in the dryer with down pillows, down coats, and down comforters to fluff them back up after washing.
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