How is it that we have come to rely so heavily on putting a sheet of artificially scented paper in our dryer every time we do the laundry?
I did a little research and discovered that scented dryer sheets were an invention of the 1970’s as a way to deliver fabric softeners more effectively. Today, we know that scented laundry products contain toxic chemicals and even known carcinogens – not that that’s stopping anyone from selling them. YUCK! Don’t you wish we had left the dryer sheets behind with the pet rocks and the purple shag carpeting?
Fortunately, there are safer ways to scent, soften & reduce static in your laundry if you so desire*:
- Toss a lavender sachet into your dryer. You can easily make your own or buy them on Etsy here or here. They also sell them at Trader Joe’s.
- Put a few drops of your favorite essential oil on a reusable cloth in the dryer.
- Add 1/3 cup of salt or baking soda in with your detergent in the wash cycle. Both are natural water softeners.
- Vinegar is also popular for softening laundry. About 1/2 cup in the fabric softener container should do the trick.
- Soak a cotton cloth in your favorite eco-friendly fabric softener. Squeeze out any excess liquid and toss in the dryer.
- Dry synthetic fabrics separately from natural fibers as synthetics tend to create more static cling.
- Dryer balls help eliminate static and also reduce wrinkles. I just love these handmade, wool dryer balls from Etsy – they come in so many cute colors (and they make great gifts!) but you can also find plain ones on Amazon.
- Add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to the rinse cycle. Don’t worry, your favorite shirt won’t smell like a pickle – the vinegar smell dissipates in the wash!
Do you use dryer sheets or have you come up with an alternative that works for you?
*Disclosure: Affiliate links mean that if you make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting Mindful Momma if you do!