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How To Do Laundry

Laundry is a pain in the ass, but if you would like to move about our society, it must be done! And for some of you, college might be a time where mommy can't do your laundry any more and it's time to learn how to do it yourself. Here is an easy-to-follow list that should leave you with clean smelling laundry that doesn't seem to be smaller or a different color than when you started:

  1. Separate you clothes.
    Before doing laundry, read the tags on all of your clothes. Some clothes need to be washed in cold water and dryed on a lowsetting or else they will shrink. Some clothes, on the other hand, are more durable and won't get clean if you wash them in cold water.

    Your clothes should be separated into the following piles:
    Lights/cold (light gray, pastels, white, anything that will pick up bleeding and will shrink in hot water), Darks/cold (black, red, dark blues or greens, anything that will change the colors of your other clothes and will shrink in hot water), Lights/hot (light colored sweatshirts, socks or pants that will not get clean in cold water and can also pick up any bleeding) and Darks/hot (this includes jeans, dark colored sweatshirts, socks, anything that will bleed and needs to be well cleaned).

    Note: It is possible that your clothes cannot be washed. If your label says, "Dry Clean Only" then do not put it in the washing machine—it will get ruined. If you do not want to take your clothes to the Dry Cleaner, try a Dryel—a home dry cleaning kit for your non-washable clothes works well. Also, bras (especially underwire) should be washed on a delicate setting, and the more delicate ones should be air dryed—these are easily ruined.

  2. Put your clothes in the washing machine.
    Before adding your clothes, pour in your detergent. Liquid detergent is more effective than powder, and any brand will do (Tide is the most popular). If you have a lot of clothes, pour an entire capful of detergent into the machine. If you do not have a lot of clothes, pour only a small amount in—liquid detergent is concentrated and if you add too much your clothes may come out feeling stiff and uncomfortable. After adding detergent, put your clothes in. Do not overload the machine. Just add whatever fits comfortably—never press your clothes down to fit more. The machine may tear clothes and simply will not clean them if it is overloaded.

  3. Set the machine.
    Once you have put your clothes in, select the correct setting. If you are washing delicate clothes select a Cold/Cold temperature setting. For regular loads select a Hot/Warm temperature setting, and for especially dirty clothes select Hot/Hot. Also, select the load size. If you have filled less then half of the machine your load is small, for half the machine the load is medium, and for more than half the load is large. Then turn the dial to select how long you want your clothes to wash for and wait. The machine will go through several cycles of rinsing and spinning and it will stop completely when it is finished - normally 30-45 minutes.

  4. Dry your clothes.
    If you would like to make your clothes soft, now is the time to add a fabric softening Dryer Sheet (you can also buy fabric softener in a liquid form and add it during the wash cycle, but you have to have a special fabric softener dispenser built into the machine or else know the right time to add it—this can be overly complicated, so dryer sheets work best). You can add two dryer sheets if you have a particularly large load of laundry or you would like a load to be particularly soft—but be careful, too many can leave a residue on your clothes or be particularly smelly. Next, add your clothes to the dryer and make sure that the lint trap is empty (always empty the lint trap, if it is full it can take hours for your clothes to dry). Select the temperature you would like to dry you clothes on (lower temperatures for more delicate clothes, higher temperatures for thicker clothes like jeans and sweatshirts), and turn the dial to select the length of time you would like to dry your clothes. Remember, the lower the temperature the longer it will take to dry, the higher the temperature the smaller your clothes will be when they are dry. Now it is up to you to decide what you'd like to do.

    Fold your newly clean clothes up, or just throw them into the "clean" pile in the corner. Either way, you did it! You washed your own clothes. Contratulations—welcome to the real world. Sucks, don't it?

Check This Out

Pop-Up Hamper

is a hamper that turns into a duffle to take to the laundry machines

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