Laundry can be overwhelming because it piles up so quickly and it NEVER ENDS. As soon as you’re done doing laundry there is immediately MORE LAUNDRY. For some reason, this topic keeps popping up in conversations that I’m having (maybe because of the new school year?) so I want to offer some tips for developing a better system for managing your laundry because it can be a source of stress and it contributes to clutter around the house. Hopefully some of these suggestions can help you get your laundry under control or at least help you tweak your current system.
First, let’s define what it means to “do laundry“. Doing laundry means (1) collecting the dirty clothes/towels, (2) washing, (3) drying, (4) promptly removing from the dryer and folding, and (5) putting away. If you have not completed all 5 steps, the laundry is not “done”. I had an ex-boyfriend who used to think that “doing laundry” was putting clothes in the washer…um…no.
1. All steps in doing the laundry should be completed the same day. Doing laundry sucks so don’t prolong it!!! When the laundry drags on, you end up with clothes in baskets that may be clean…or dirty…or clean but wrinkled. It’s unclear where these clothes need to go and you have now created more work and more decisions to make. Are these clothes clean or dirty? Do you put your clothes back in the dryer? Do you iron them? (the only thing I hate more than laundry is ironing). Do you toss them back in the washer? This can make the chore drag on.
2. Use the timer on the washer! Switch loads promptly to keep things moving.
3. Pick a laundry day or days and stick to it. Get your laundry started early on laundry day. For me, it’s Fridays and I get laundry started first thing in the morning – I have the laundry in the washer before I even have my coffee – to get it over with early.
4. If you have a lot of laundry, do laundry more frequently so you have smaller loads, which will obviously be easier/ faster to fold and put away making the chore less daunting. So, if you like this approach, maybe you have 2 laundry days instead of one or maybe you even do a small load of laundry every day.
5. Consider using a laundry sorter like this one or using a hamper with a removable liner so you can just grab the laundry bag and carry it to the washer.
6. You should have 2 or 3 laundry baskets max (for reference, we have 2 laundry baskets and we have 4 people living in our house). Laundry baskets should be stored near the washer/dryer. Laundry baskets have one purpose: to transport the laundry from the laundry room to the designated folding area then to put the laundry away. Your clothes should not live in the laundry baskets.
7. Use the time it takes to fold laundry to listen or watch something you enjoy. Folding is a big part of why laundry sucks. I like to bring the basket of laundry into my room, dump it on the bed to fold, and put on some good music or a podcast I like. This way, folding laundry can become a little break from your day doing something you enjoy rather than a chore. You can even listen to this podcast about the importance of taking breaks while you’re taking a break.
8. Have kids? Get them to help! I use this hamper for Beatrice because it’s super cute and I love that it has handles and is very light so she can (attempt) to carry it herself 🙂
9. Speaking of help, if it’s in your budget, consider using a laundry service. It may be worth paying for a service to have the help even if it’s not every single week. I’m dreaming about using this place to get an occasional break from laundry like when we’re returning from vacation and the laundry has piled up.
10. Use a lingerie bag for items like bras and nice underwear, and well, lingerie (assuming you have some) so you can skip hand washing and just toss these items in the washer.
So this might have been the most boring post ever if you are a laundry guru but for those of you who need some suggestions to get a handle on the laundry, I hope that this was helpful!
Have a great week, friends! xx