Being a kid is a messy job — if you don’t come back from playtime covered in mud and grass stains. You really aren’t doing it right.
As a parent, it’s your job to make sure your kiddos get to enjoy all life has to offer. Why not tackle the dirtiest parts of playtime by making sure your child’s favorite clothes last longer with these laundry tips.
Not only should you be shopping for quality clothes made from quality ingredients in order to boost the longevity of your kid’s wardrobe, but implementing just a few of the following nine laundry tips will lengthen the wearing time of your kiddos favorite duds.
Check out these nine great laundry tips every parent can use to make sure you are getting the most wear out of your kiddos clothes:
1. Sort Clothes By Color And Washing Instruction.
It seems simple, but merely sorting your clothes by color and actually following the washing instructions on the tag will make your little one’s clothes last way longer.
A simple way to do this is to have at least three sorting bins in your kiddo’s room, and during bedtime, as they get undressed and ready for PJs, ask them to sort the white clothes into one container, the colorful garments into another, and the dark clothes into their own bin.
You can place a mark on the floor and ask them to see if they can make it into the bin from there and give them a round of applause when they make it.
Not only is it fun to toss your clothes into a bin and be rewarded with applause, but this is a win-win situation for parent and child. As a parent, you are setting your kid up for future good habits, and you get a little extra help at the end of the day while still keeping chores fun.
Soon they’ll be sorting them on their own!
2. Wash Clothes Inside Out
Washing and drying clothes inside out is gentler on any embroidery or screen printing outside the shirt and will help ensure that the print and designs list longer, especially if you are buying quality clothing for your kids.
3. Dry On A Cooler And Longer Setting
Ever had one of your kid’s graphic tee’s melt to itself in the dryer? Avoid this altogether by choosing a gentler setting with a cooler temp and simply choosing a longer dry time.
At first, it will seem like a nuisance waiting longer for the clothes to be done, but you’ll actually save the quality of the clothes and save on your electric bill too.
4. Quality Natural Detergents
Not only are natural and biodegradable detergents great for the environment and your health, but they are also great for the longevity of your clothes.
Natural detergents that exclude the use of dies and chemicals are gentler on clothes. They don’t have chemicals that can bind to the fabric and instead simply made with soaps that bind to dirt.
These detergents can actually leave your clothes cleaner while protecting them from fading and over softening the fibers too quickly.
5. Treat Stains Quickly
The best way to be able to keep your kiddos wearing their favorites longer is to treat stains early. Even a little diluted detergent in a spray bottle in the car can work wonders on a food stain while using a bit of your favorite soda water will help lift that grape juice drizzle from their shirt after snack time at the park.
Once home, you can also treat the stain with an all-natural stain stick and little hot water before adding to the laundry pile.
6. Wash Your Clothes With Colder Temperature Water
We know hot water is so much faster and more efficient at cleaning, but honestly, cold it is where it is at. Your clothes will last so much longer if you take the heat out of the equation.
This method does require some pre-washing and stain treating on your part, see tip number six above, but the benefits are tenfold.
7. Add A Little Vinegar To Each Wash
Not only does white vinegar help clean and refresh clothes, but it actually brightens and removes odors from over wear and constant use, even making a favorite old blanky smell like new.
There are loads of benefits to using white vinegar moderately in your washing:
- It softens your clothes like fabric softener.
- It brightens clothes like bleach.
- It neutralizes mold and sour smells from wet clothes.
- It will actually keep your dark clothes darker as it is often used to cure dyes during the clothing dying process.
- It also helps to clean your washing machine. A clean washing machine means fewer washes for your clothes!
8. Air Dry On A Drying Rock Or Clothesline
This may seem like a chore, but air-drying your clothes really does lengthen their longevity. Pick a beautiful day to spend outside with the kids playing in the yard while you sort and hang their favorite items over a foldable drying rack.
The dryer is quite harsh on your clothes’ fibers, and the tumbling action doesn’t help either. Tumbling actually helps break down the fibers quicker.
Air drying your clothes avoids that. This is an incredibly useful technique for delicate items and pieces that are of higher quality. This way, you get to hang on to your investment pieces longer, and your kids will get to keep looking fresh even after the first wear.
Try drying your whites outside in the sun to keep them bright while drying your colorful clothes in the shade or inside in a well-ventilated space to keep them from fading.
You’ll also be helping to save the environment as well.
9. Stop Washing After A Single Wear
This may sound absolutely crazy, but not every item is “dirty” after a single wear. Washing and drying weaken the fibers. The best way to prolong your clothes’ life is to simply stop washing them every single time they are used.
This may be a foreign concept to some, but not all clothes need to be washed every time they are worn.
We all know what really needs to go into the wash, but these are some of the items you can simply hang up and allow to air out for another use from your kids:
- Sleepwear — As long as there are no night “accidents,” PJs can usually be worn a few times.
- Clothes are worn for just a few hours around the house or to the store — Those transitional outfits we wear between activities can be worn again.
- Rainy day indoor clothes — Those quiet, book-reading rainy days come around every now and then, and these clothes don’t always get messy or sweaty.
- Fancy dress clothes — Fancy dress events come around every now and again, and we strive to keep our kids tidy so they can keep these clothes in good shape.
After the day, the party, or the event, simply hang the outfit up separate from your other clothes, like in the laundry room or a well-ventilated room, and allow them to air out for a few days before you store them back in your child’s closet till the next outing.
Taking Care Of Your Kids Clothes Also Helps Take Care of The Environment
In conclusion, just implementing a few of these tips that fit into your schedule and lifestyle are great ways to lengthen the life of your kiddos’ clothes. This means you’ll be able to expand their wardrobe with even more quality pieces in the years to come. Taking care of your kids’ clothes will help you create better habits towards caring for the items our kids wear and use every single day, and it helps take care of the environment at the same time.