Looking for simple laundry tips to help your clothes last longer? Here are 14 simple tips you can use today.

Have you always wondered how to keep your clothes looking great? These tips may surprise you. They’ll help you care for your clothing properly so they last longer. Check them out here.

Yesterday I looked down at the sweater I was wearing that I thought looked so cute when I put it on.

Except.

Except I put it on when it was dark.

And now?

In the light? It needed a good shave. There were little fuzz pieces everywhere on the back side of the sleeves. Pillity, pill, pill, pill. 

Good thing I know a great solution for sweaters like that. Over the years I’ve figured out so many tips for taking care of clothes and how to make them look like new and get stains out.

So today I thought it would be fun to chat about laundry.

And clothes.

And how to take care of them.

Here are 14 laundry tips to help your clothes last longer.

14 Laundry Tips to Make Your Clothes Last Longer

1. How to get those fuzzy pills off your sweaters

Truth?

The more you wear your sweater the fuzzy pieces start collecting and making pills. It’s not the sweater’s fault. The knit the sweater is made of starts to pull apart and the fibers stretch out.

My favorite solution?

This fabric shaver.

It’s actually so much fun to use—you shave the sweater and the pills disappear and it looks like new again. I would so much rather shave a sweater than shave my legs. 

The shaver is battery-operated and has three different settings and it’s so much more affordable than a new sweater.

You can see the fabric shaver here.

2. Add a Tide pen to your purse (or purses)

This is the tip that has saved many an outfit.

I’m just messy.

I’m going too fast and talking too much and getting it all on my clothes.

The key with stains is you want to treat them right away. I found this set of three Tide pens so I”m always at the ever ready. Make sure to add a little water when you use it. I’ve found this makes it work better.

I put one in the car, one in my purse and one in my traveling bag.

I’ve already used them more times than I can count.

You can see the Tide pens here.

3. Soak the stain in water overnight

This is my BEST tip for getting rid of stains.

I mix up a little paste of detergent (whichever detergent you have on hand) and rub it into the stain.

If the stain is really stubborn (and the fabric has a lot of ridges), sometimes I use an old toothbrush to rub the detergent paste in. Then I put the garment with the stain into a bowl of water and let it soak overnight.

Then wash as usual.

4. Don’t dry stains

I know this is Captain Obvious of stain removal, but I wanted to put it here just in case.

If you use tip number 2 and you wash the shirt or the dress or the pants and the stain doesn’t come out?

DO NOT DRY IT.

Drying it is like setting the stain.

Instead, repeat step 2 and try to get the stain out again.

5. For really tough stains Fels-Naptha really works

I discovered Fels-Naptha when Zack played baseball.

I could NOT keep those white pants clean.

And then another mom told me about Fels-Naptha. It’s totally old school and comes in a bar. Best stain purchase you will ever make.

Every laundry room needs one.

Use the end of the bar and rub it into the stain and wash as normal.

Laundry Stain

6. Simple laundry tip for oil stains

All stains are not created equal.

And oil?

Specifically, salad dressing oil is one of the worst.

If you have an oil spill, for the best chance of success, you want to act as quickly as possible.

Blue Dawn Detergent is your friend. I use a brush like this to rub it in (if the fabric is sturdy enough to use a brush on).

You could also treat the stain with a brush like this to get the stain out of all the fibers and immediately wash per washing instructions.

7. Pay attention to fabric care labels

This has saved me with many a garment.

The fabric care labels are there for a reason.

If it says to wash in cold, wash in cold. If it says “delicate” and “don’t dry” make sure to follow the instructions.

Your clothes will last so much longer if you just follow the care instructions.

8. Wear something twice without washing

Someone gave me this advice and just between us?

It was hard to follow.

I felt like if I wore it once? It had to be washed.

But truly? If you wore it and there aren’t any stains and you didn’t run a mile in it or climb a mountain?

It can probably go back into your closet for one more wear.

Clothes actually last so much longer if you don’t wash them as often.

Quick tip: I have everything folded perfectly in my closet using this handy tool. I use it and love it all the time.

9. Use mesh lingerie bags

This is the best tip ever. I never knew about these before someone else told me about these bags.

Gold my friend—absolute GOLD.

It started when I snagged a sweater with the hook on the back of my bra.

(total aside: you should always hook bras together before washing.)

But lingerie lasts so much longer if you use these bags to wash them. It prevents everything from being stretched out or getting tangled up together and ripping.

Protect your unmentionables (as my grandma used to call them) in the wash with lingerie bags.

10. Don’t dry everything

I don’t dry half of what I wash.

Here’s what I dry:

  • jeans
  • pants
  • sweatshirts
  • older pajamas
  • velour clothing
  • acrylic (on low heat)

Here’s what I don’t dry:

  • sweaters
  • blouses with ruffles
  • swimsuits
  • tops with embellishments
  • shoes
  • tights
  • wool (never ever ever)

I love a drying rack that pulls out like this.

Many times, I’ll also lay a towel on top of the washer and dryer and lay the clothes flat to dry.

11. Use less detergent

ESPECIALLY if you have a front loader.

I know this seems counterintuitive, but using less detergent is actually better.

If there’s too much soap, it can bubble up and those bubbles get trapped in the clothes and leave a sticky mess.

Most detergents now are so high-powered that you just need a small amount.

12. Turn dark-colored clothes inside out

One of the easiest laundry tips, I’ve found to reduce fading is to turn dark clothes inside out.

Especially black pants and shirts.

Turning them inside out reduces the friction on the front of the fabric and puts all the friction on the inside instead (that no one will ever see).

12. Simple laundry tip to reduce wrinkles

The easiest laundry tip? Always remove your clothes from the dryer as soon as possible.

This prevents wrinkles from setting in and clothes looking frumpy.

I also have stopped ironing and started using a steamer instead. It saves SO MUCH time.

Instead of going back and forth with the iron, the steamer just swipes over the top of the shirt or blouse or dress and all the wrinkles disappear. I’m bringing a steamer with me on the cruise so I can get all those beach wrinkles out. (edited to add: I just found out I can’t take a steamer on the cruise).

This is the steamer I have and love.

laundry tips

14. Keep track

One last tip that isn’t so much a laundry tip as a life tip.

Whenever we run out of something in the laundry room or butler’s pantry (they are the same room).

We just write it on this little craft paper roll.

It’s so easy to rip off and take to the grocery store.

They don’t make this one anymore, but I found a similar one here.

I hope this post inspired you today.

Taking care of the clothes you have and making them last longer is so rewarding.

And now?

Can you help a sweater piller out?

What is your favorite laundry tip?

Let’s discuss in the comments below. 🙂

disclosure: affiliate links are used in this post.

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Comments

  1. Image for Tracey A Tracey A

    Good Morning, I love these ideas, thank you for sharing. I knew of them, but now I am implementing them! My husband works at a cruise terminal, he runs the port of security. You will not be able to bring a steam iron. What happens if you do, they take it before the cruise and you pick it up after the cruise is over. It has something to do with no appliances, which I don't get because we bring all different types of curling irons or flat irons. It has something to do with safety, possibly someone leaving it on and causing a fire.

  2. Image for Lisa Lisa

    Another thing to get out oily stains is baking soda. Sprinkle it on the stain add a little water making a paste and let it sit. It will pull out the stain. Even old stains that have been washed and dried multiple times. If you have an ink stain on your shirt, spray hairspray on it and wash it. Might not want to wash it with other items so the ink doesn’t transfer to anything else, but the stain will come out.

  3. Image for Diana Diana

    Great ideas Karianne especially with all these blended fabrics. Another tip is don't use dryer sheets or those fabric softener's, they break down the fibers and coat them. That is why things feel crunchy over time or stretch out.

    1. Image for KariAnne KariAnne

      Sheryll, You can buy them on ULine: https://www.uline.com/Product/Detail/S-13805/Kraft-Paper-Wrap/30-lb-Kraft-Paper-Roll-6-x-1200 Happy day, KariAnne

  4. Image for Jan Fusco Jan Fusco

    Thanks for all the tips. I've already put two of your suggested products on my Amazon shopping list. I was hoping you'd mention the Dawn detergent. I use it all the time. Great for stains. Thanks Karianne.

  5. Image for JC JC

    Great tips! Someone told me about Carbona Oil stain remover and it works amazingly well! Comes in a little yellow container and I got it at Walmart. When I've been out and about and not carrying any stain remover on me I've used hand gel ...cuz I always carry that on me...and rub it into the stain. Often times by the time I get home to treat the stain, it is already gone! Have a fabulous time on your cruise!! Sorry about the steamer situation. I love my steamer too. The beachy look is kind of wrinkly anyway. You'll look great in whatever you wear. Have fun!

  6. Image for Chris Chris

    Good tips! One of the best stain removal I have found is grease lighting, I buy it by the gallon! No scrubbing just spray it on and in the washer it goes! 👕👗🧺

  7. Image for Chris Chris

    Love your tips! One of the best stain removal out there is grease lightning! it is the best, no scrubbing needed just spray it on.🤩🧺

  8. Image for S. Marie S. Marie

    I loved ♥ this post! I am intrigued ...... Pls tell me HOW you made a combo Butler's Pantry and Laundry room. I so want to do that! I have a large enough laundry room right off the kitchen. Thank you and cant wait to hear your answer!

  9. Image for Marti Marti

    Get the laundry & pressing service on your cruise. Not only will you not have dirty clothes in your luggage when you return home, but it’s soooo nice to get your clothes delivered to your stateroom perfectly ironed❤️❤️❤️

  10. Image for Jackie L. Jackie L.

    I have used my steamer for at least 20 years. I HATED ironing and it’s so easy and fast to use the steamer. Best item I ever bought. Have a great cruise - relax, have a glass of wine, and enjoy.

  11. Image for Susan Sims Susan Sims

    Hi! I did a google image search because I didn’t like the similar craft paper holder as much as your original holder, and I found your holder available on Amazon!

  12. Image for Gloria F Gloria F

    I found OxiClean Laundry Stain Remover Spray works works great on children’s clothes when diapers leak and adult clothes stained from sauce or salad oil. Spray and you can see it foam where the stain is, then wait ten minutes and wash. OxiClean powder gets clothes white again when bleach fails to do the job by soaking clothes in a bucket of hot water and a cup of powder for 24 hours, then dump the water and repeat again for another day.

  13. Image for Gloria F Gloria F

    Also-When I hang clothes to dry I always put a box fan on them and they dry so much quicker. I turn sweaters and pants hung upside down half way through to be sure seams dry.

  14. Image for Gloria Forelli Gloria Forelli

    Also-When I hang clothes to dry I always put a box fan on them and they dry so much quicker. I turn sweaters and pants hung upside down half way through to be sure seams dry.

  15. Image for Cheryl Cheryl

    I also wear a lot of my clothes a 2nd time before washing. My tip is when I take it off after the 1st wear I leave it wrong side out. then I know when I wear it the 2nd time it is time to wash it!

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