Without the risk of sounding like a bit of a stinker, one of the things I love about winter is not needing to do my laundry as often. In the summer months clothes get sweatier, sandier and generally dirtier! But when it gets chilly outside, and my body turns to an icicle, I can get away with wearing outfits multiple times before they need to go through the washing machine.
A few months ago I swapped my usual washing powder to soap nuts, and have recently been experimenting with eco balls (which are awesome BTW!) to use less chemicals on my clothes. But it’s not just the toxins on our skins, and in our water, that excessive clothes washing contributes to.
It’s estimated that every year UK washing machines use £800 million of electricity, and 500 billion litres of water, just to keep up with our obsession for cleanliness. That’s a lot of time, money and natural resources to be spending on a few scraps of fabric to hide our nudity! Especially when you consider that demand for water has doubled in the last 30 yrs; and that by 2025, two thirds of the world population will face water shortage.
I know we don’t particularly want to offend peoples noses with our smelly clothes, but more often than not, a simply stain or musty linger can be enough for us to throw garments through a whole new wash. And I’m sure I’m not the only one who has gone treasure hunting around the house for things to wash just because we need enough to “fill the load”! I don’t know about you, but I can think of a 100 other things I would prefer to spend my time and money on.
So this month, while everyone is making shopping lists for Christmas gifts, I’ve been making a list of ways I can ensure I keep my washing basket empty; way beyond the chilly winter months! So far I have:
- Hang up my clothes and stop leaving them on the floor to be covered in dust or cat hair
- Sponge off any small stains or dirty marks with a bit of water or soap
- Spritz away musty smells with a mixture of water and essentials oils (something fresh like tea tree or lemon mixed with something floral like ylang ylang).
- Layer clothes over stains – like a jumper of a strategically placed scarf.
- Don’t worry what people think – especially if you’re just pottering around the house or popping to the shop!
Anyone got any other tips for cutting down on clothes washing?