DIY: Natural Fabric Softener Recipe
How to Make Homemade Fabric Softener
Moving away from potentially harmful conventional fabric softeners and dryer sheets is important if you want to green your laundry habits, and making your own fabric softeners is just one way to do this. Not only can you make your own natural fabric softener liquids at home with some simple ingredients, you can also concoct eco-friendly dryer sheets as well, depending on your preference.
Homemade fabric softener options
In case you’re concerned that by giving up regular fabric softener you’ll have to go through life in a shocking state of static cling, worry not! There are several really easy, DIY natural fabric softener recipes you can try that are good for the environment and healthier for you and your family.
- Natural cling busters: Give natural ingredients like vinegar and borax a try. Just add a 1/4 cup of either to your wash cycle (the vinegar can also go in the rinse cycle) to reduce static cling.
- Line dry: Putting your clothes outside on the clothesline where they can sway in the breeze will naturally fluff and dry all at once. It’s a low-cost, very eco-friendly way to do the laundry.
- Shake trick: As you take clothing out of the dryer, give it a quick shake to cut some of the static.
- Natural fibers: Generally, synthetic fabrics are more prone to static electricity, so if you’d like to avoid this problem with your clothing, choose things like organic cotton, bamboo, or wool.
- Metal hangers: Once your clothes are clean, if you find you’re suffering from static use a metal hanger to reduce the cling. Brush it between your skin and the fabric (as you wear the garment).
Making homemade greener softeners for the dryer
Thankfully, there are also some great ways to make your own dryer sheets as well, if that’s you’re preferred static-busting method. Here are some quick ways to make eco-friendly dryer sheets:
- Dryer balls: These clever little devices work to reduce static in your fabrics while fluffing them chemical-free. Just throw them in the dryer with your laundry. Remember, though, to purchase ones that are PVC-free and recyclable.
- Homemade dryer sheets: Dilute a teaspoon of natural hair conditioner (or a natural fabric softener liquid) and then pour it on an old (clean) sock or piece of an old undershirt (great way to recycle old clothing!). Alternatively, soak the fabric with vinegar. Regardless of your liquid of choice, use as you would any other dryer sheet and simply reapply the solution for each new load.
- Dried flowers and essential oils: If it’s naturally fragrant fresh laundry you’re after, consider putting some dried organic flowers (lavender for instance!) in an old sock or cloth drawstring bag and tossing that in your dryer with each load. Add some essential oils to an old clean rag or sock and put that in your dryer for naturally-scented laundry.
Click to learn more about natural fabric softeners.