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No mom wants to spend her valuable time doing laundry, yet it is a chore that we can’t ignore no matter how busy life gets. As a busy mom with two active boys, I do lots of laundry. We always have hampers full of dirty clothes from school and sports, not too mention sheets, linens, and pool towels! My time is precious and I want to spend the least amount of it possible doing laundry. I have tried several techniques and purchased too many products in an attempt to save time doing laundry. Finally, I came up with a plan that works for my family and I want to share it with you. From washing to folding, my guide for time crunched moms is full of time saving tips to help you get laundry done quickly.
When I am too busy for laundry, our hampers start to overflow! Then, I spend hours washing and folding huge piles clothes. It is much easier to do laundry when I only have a few items to wash. So my number one time saving laundry tip is to do laundry EVERYDAY! Yikes!
#1 Do Laundry Every Day
Yes, yes. I know. Nobody wants to hear this but in the end doing laundry every day will save you loads of time. It is much easier to fold a small pile of clothes in a couple of minutes, then a large one that takes 20 minutes. Trust me I have tried different tactics. I’ve tried to wash only on weekends, or every other day, but in the end I find it least time consuming if I do laundry everyday. And by laundry I mean wash, dry, and fold the same load in one day. Actually I do more than one load a day and it is still faster than tackling a big pile on the weekend.
#2 Make a Laundry Schedule
Tip number two is to make a laundry schedule that fits your family’s needs and try to follow it every week. If I miss a day, then I’ve rocked the boat entirely and end up with a huge pile of dirty clothes. The same happens if we are out of town and I can’t do laundry. Here is the schedule for my house:
You can download my free printable laundry schedule here.
#3 Don’t Waste Time Sorting Clothes by Color or Person.
My third tip is not to waste time sorting clothes. I wash all of our clothes together, I don’t separate kids and adults. The majority of our clothing gets thrown into the wash in one load. Who has time for darks and lights when I am already washing everyday. I do have a few exception to this rule: nice solid white clothing (not the kids white t-shirts), bright reds (not faded reds that have been washed several times), and dark denim (basically my dark wash jeans!) These special items get pulled out as I am loading everything into the washing machine and kept in a small basket in the laundry room to be washed another day. If the clothes don’t fall in one of my three categories then they get washed all together with a Shout Color Catcher. These little cloths always do the trick, if there is any dye floating around in the laundry water then it attaches to the Shout Color Catcher instead of my clothes. Also, I don’t wash towels and clothes together.
# 4 Keep your Supplies Easily Accessible.
I like to keep it simple when it comes to laundry. All of my laundry supplies sit on the edge of the sink next to my washer and dryer ready to go when I need them. I use laundry detergent packs so I can easily throw one into each load. No messy pouring! My favorite brands are 365 from Whole Foods or Seventh Generation. I also keep a spray bottle of stain remover and those Color Catchers right near my washing machine for easy access. The final necessary laundry item I use are dryer balls and I like to keep mine inside the dryer to save a few seconds. But if you prefer, a box of dryer sheets by the machine that works too!
# 5 Never Wait Around for your Clothes to Finish a Cycle
Timing in very important if you want to do laundry as quick as possible. I throw in my scheduled load of laundry every morning before I leave the house. Then, I use the all important Delay Start and Stay Fresh buttons on my washing machine. Delay start lets me schedule the machine to start washing at a certain time, and the stay fresh button keeps my clothes from getting mildewed while they sit waiting to be put in the dryer. I try to time my laundry so it is finished and waiting for me when I get home. Then, when I put my clothes in the dryer I use low heat and turn on the Wrinkle Guard button. This button works by fluffing my dry clothes until I take them out to fold, therefore preventing wrinkles. Depending on my day I fold clothes in the afternoon, other times I fold clothes in the evening but I try to schedule my dryer to finish when I will be ready to fold.
#6 Fold Clothes in the Room They Belong In and Make Stacks for Each Individual Dresser Drawer
I dump all the cleaned dry clothes onto my master bed for folding. As I pull out pieces of laundry to fold, I can put them away instantly. I hang shirts and dresses right away to prevent wrinkles. Since I wash the kids clothes with mine, I fold their items and make stacks depending on which dresser drawer it belongs in. One stack for shorts, one for shirts, one for PJs. This makes it easier for putting away clothes. Then keeping the clothes organized I make one tall stack and place it back in the laundry basket to be carried to the boys’ rooms. Save some more time by having the kids put away their own clothes. Since you took the time to organize the folded clothes into stacks for each drawer, the kids should be able to easily put everything away in the correct place.
I hope you learned a few tips from this Guide to Laundry for Time Crunched Moms that will help you escape piles and piles of clothes. Do you have any other time saving laundry tips?