When I was thinking about moving out to go to university in London, little did it occur to me that I would have to look after myself. I was picturing parties, coffee trips with friends, late nights at the library and a whole lot of freedom. And while I was partially right with these images (turns out I’m not that much of a party goer), there were also loads of boring routine things I forgot about. Like buying food on a regular basis. And laundry. No one really talks about washing your dirty underwear. From a young age I was told to hang the washing out, but I never actually thought about how they got washed. If I could go back in time I would have asked my mum to write a laundry guide for me. That would definitely save me having to text her in the middle of the night asking how to wash my clothes sitting on the floor in my PJs 4th day in a row because I didn’t have any clean clothes.
I have put together a little laundry guide for you with the aim to help you save your clothes from some devastating changes mine had to go through. It wasn’t easy. It still isn’t always easy and I do sometimes mess it up myself as well. But hopefully, you can learn from my mistakes and avoid them. Let’s get into it!
It may be a sign of getting old but I find sorting clothes for the wash so satisfying. I remember always having to sort clothes by their colour. I kind of took it as an obvious thing when I moved out. Now, I understand that when you live on your own you don’t have a great amount of washing to do if you wanted to wash all the colours separately. But if you want to take proper care of your clothing, you should consider sorting it into 3 different piles. Whites, which consist of literally everything that is white. If you want it to stay white, you’ll want to wash it separately. Darks – all the black, grey, dark brown, purple, burgundy colours that you’ll want to stay dark. And finally, colours which includes clothes of any bright shade.
If you mix the colours together, over the period of time they will lose their vibrance. White will become grey, black will fade out and the bright colours you were so happy to purchase will take on a black undertone. Speaking from experience here. So as much as you don’t necessarily have to do a separate washing for towels, bedsheets or anything else, it’s in your best interest to sort everything by these three categories.
Now that you’ve got your clothes sorted into three piles/baskets/bags, you can think about putting them in a wash. But it’s not as simple as sticking the washing in the washing machine and pressing some buttons. Well… it is, but you just need to know what’s what and what it does. The main thing to remember has a lot to do with how you have sorted your clothes out.
Each out of the three categories listed above have a different temperature they need to be washed in. To keep the dark clothes dark you should wash it in a temperature that does not exceed 30 degrees. Otherwise, the colour will fade away with time. Many people actually recommend running it on a cold wash, but that’s up to one’s preferences. Bright colours will have to be washed in temperatures between 30-40 degrees. And whites need the highest temperature of 60 degrees to keep them as bright as they originally were.
To make the best out of every wash, purchase a washing powder (obviously) and liquid detergent. You can very often find detergents made specifically for certain colour group. They are supposed to enhance your wash even more and make sure your clothes will come out of the washing machine as new. If you’d like to skip washing white clothes in 60 degrees, you can purchase many detergents which are said to clean in a cold wash. I’m still testing them out myself though and will let you know if they work as good.
Want to save some money on the bills? Many washing machines let you change the time on most of their programs, so even if it initially says it might take, let’s say, 2h, very often it can be brought down by 30minutes to an hour. Read a manual for your washing machine or Google the model to see how you do it.
I swear every single washing machine’s favourite snacks are odd socks. How come at the beginning of the month I have all of my socks neatly put away in the drawer, only to have 1 sock from each pair 2 weeks later? Not to mention the pain of actually trying to find matching socks when you’re putting the washed clothes away or are looking for them in the wardrobe. They’re worse to find than looking for a needle in a stack of hay. So imagine my relief when I found out I wasn’t the only person frustrated by this.
When Popasox contacted me I was very excited to jump on board and try out their socks. The idea behind them is simple – each pair of socks has two pairs of clips sewn at the back so when you put them in a wash you clip them together. That way they will always stay together in the washing machine, on a radiator or the washing line and in a drawer! Genius, really. Whilst they are not the cheapest socks you can get out there (I see you Primark), investing in a few so you don’t have to frantically search through your sock drawer when you’re getting ready might be a good idea. Maybe hint it to your family or friends around your birthday or Christmas. Everyone knows socks are the best gift you can get as a young adult.
If you’d like to take a look at the range they offer, go over to their website and have a little browse here.
Hope it clears the air around the washing machine for you! If you have any other tips that I may not have mentioned, please leave them in the comments! By no means am I an expert when it comes to laundry and I’m still learning as I go along.
Until next time xx
This post contains gifted items. Popasox kindly sent me their socks to see if I could test and review them. As always all opinions are my own and are not influenced by the collaboration. Read more about my Disclaimer Policy here.