Learning how to wash clothes isn’t the sexiest part of being a college student, but it definitely is a required life skill when you’ve got no clean underwear left and you’re contemplating doing a flippy floppy out of desperation (spoiler alert: the answer is no).
How to Wash Clothes
For most co-eds, the washer and dryer are NOPE territory so we’re going to give you some simple steps and a few pro-tips. Follow our advice and you’ll reduce your chances of dying all your whites blurple by 99%.
Step 1 – Choosing a Detergent
Going to the store and walking down the detergent aisle can be super intimidating. There are about a million different brand, scent, and type combinations and you have no idea what to choose. Pods are probably going to be your best bet; they’re a little more expensive, but you never have to worry about a bubble explosion.
Fabric softener isn’t necessary, but it cuts down on static cling. It comes in three forms:
- Liquid for the washer
- Sheets for the dryer
- Hypo-allergenic balls for the dryer
Tip: If you’re homesick, pick the same products your mom uses. You’ll get a whiff of home every time you pull on a fresh white tee.
Step 2 – Sorting your Clothes
At the very least, you’re going to want to separate your clothes into to three basic piles: darks, lights, and whites – each pile gets washed by itself. That’s the easy way, but if you feel safe getting a little fancier here are some advanced laundry sorting techniques:
- Separate your reds
- Separate your denim and other sturdier fabrics
- Put your delicates in a mesh bag
Tip: Using a divided laundry bag makes laundry day go faster.
Step 3 – Starting the Washer
Once you’ve loaded up the washer with clothes and a single detergent pod, you need to pick which cycle to run. Almost every washer is different but they usually have temperature settings that look like this:
- Darks – cold wash / cold rinse
- Lights – cold wash / cold or warm rinse
- Whites – hot wash / cold rinse
Most washers have a specific space for liquid fabric softener. If yours doesn’t, you can use a self-releasing ball.
Tip: If it doesn’t fit in the washer, it won’t fit in the dryer
Step 4 – Starting the Dryer
Once you’ve placed the wet clothes in the dryer you can add either your fabric softener sheet or balls. For most loads a medium heat and regular fabric setting is fine. Use a lower heat and gentler fabric setting for more delicate fabrics. You can avoid wrinkles by taking the clothes out and folding/hanging them as soon as the dryer is finished.
Tip: Ain’t nobody got time for folding! So just pick up a wrinkle releaser on your next Amazon shopping binge.
By following these tips, you’ll learn how to wash clothes like a boss in no time!