Step-by-Step Guide on How to do Laundry

Learning how to do the laundry that is piling up in your basket is something everyone should know, and luckily, it’s not too demanding! With today’s fabrics, detergents, and machines, you can avoid many classic mistakes that often come from doing laundry the first few times. Whether you love laundry or hate it, we have compiled a step-by-step guide on how to do your laundry so that the process is faster and easier! Say goodbye to clothes shrinking and your whites turning pink by following these easy steps:

Read the Labels

Reading the labels on your clothes (often located on a tag) will provide critical laundry tips on how to treat that specific item of clothing. It is essential to follow the instructions on the labels to prevent damage to your clothes. Below we share a few examples:

  • “Dry clean only”: This label means you cannot wash the item in a machine. Pay close attention to this tag, as severe damage could occur to your clothing if you ignore the instructions.
  • “Wash separately” or “hand wash only”: Place these items into separate piles and ensure you wash them by hand to preserve their material, shape, and color.

Separate your Clothing 

After removing any items with special instructions, begin sorting your clothes by color. This prevents any colors from running and ensures your colors stay bright! Clothes should be separated into three color piles. Whites, light colors, and dark colors.

Pay Attention to Fabric

The fabric of your clothes will determine the temperature at which you wash them and the drying technique. Understanding how to do the laundry of each specific fabric type will help you avoid brutal mistakes! Below are common fabric type examples and the best washing methods:

  • Cotton: Wash in cold water, dry on a low setting, and remove to air dry
  • Polyester: Wash in cold or warm water with fabric softener, and then air dry
  • Linen: Wash in warm water on a gentle cycle separate from other fabrics, and then line dry
  • Wool: Hand wash or place in a mesh bag to machine wash in cold water and lay flat to dry
  • Spandex: Turn the item inside out and place it in a mesh bag, wash on a gentle setting, and then air dry
  • Silk: Hand wash in cold water and lay flat to dry

Pick a Detergentman picking out detergent

Choosing a detergent is an important decision, and we suggest selecting an all-purpose laundry detergent. It is crucial to read the directions to determine the amount you use based on the size of your laundry load. While bargain brand detergents may appear to save you money, many of them may be less effective since some can contain up to 90% water. Here’s a helpful link to provide more insights on laundry detergents . If your clothes have stains, pre-treat them before washing them. Removing grass stains and sweat stains requires different actions. Generally, we recommend using OxyClean or a mixture of white vinegar and baking soda. Add the detergent to the washing drum or dispenser BEFORE loading it with clothes to prevent residue on your clothing.

Load and Choose the Correct Water Temperature and Cycle 

It is critically important not to overload your washer. Overloading the washer can impede the garments’ ability to agitate, resulting in less than optimal results. To choose the correct water temperature and cycle, ensure you understand how different fabrics should be washed (see above). One of the most vital laundry tips we can give you is to follow the recommendations for different temperatures and cycles. Disregarding this and throwing all your clothes into one load can result in shrinkage, discoloration, and damage.

Load the Dryer

Once your washing cycle is complete, place your clothes in the dryer. However, only the clothes that can be dried in a machine should be put in the dryer. Placing clothing like bathing suits, linens, and silk into the dryer can cause them to shrink. Check the labels on each item to determine whether they should be laid flat to dry, tumble dry, etc. As with loading washers, it’s important not to overload the dryer and to avoid choosing a dryer temperature that may be too hot for the items you are drying.

Do Your Laundry at The Laundry Cafe

The Laundry Cafe is your local self-serve laundromat with everything you need to do your laundry easily and quickly. Laundry is not a chore when you use our facility! We provide convenient, affordable, and exciting amenities that will make your experience fun! Check out our offerings and visit us for your next laundry load.