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At first, I was a little skeptical that something as pungent as vinegar was a product I wanted my clothes soaking in. That was before I began discovering all the fabulous uses there are for this natural cleaning product. Since then cleaning with vinegar is part of my regular home upkeep routine.

What Will Vinegar Do?

Vinegar will perform many actions in your laundry. Try using vinegar for laundry to:

Soften Fabrics. You can get this effect from just vinegar by itself or you can go a step further and make a homemade fabric softener that includes baking soda as well.

Clean. Not only will vinegar help rinse away dirt, it will also get rid of the traces of laundry detergent that are holding onto that dirt. The laundry detergent itself isn’t clean you know. It’s full of potential allergens and irritants. Anyone who’s gotten it on their hands has seen the effect. If you wash your clothes in the recommended amount of detergent in the regular wash cycle, you are almost certainly leaving laundry detergent in your clothes. By rinsing with vinegar, you’ll be getting rid of it, and the results can be seen, felt, and smelt.

Brighten colors and whiten whites. Stands to reason — since things are cleaner they’re whiter and brighter.

Remove odors. Although it has a strong smell itself, this is completely washed away and in the meantime, the vinegar will have neutralized odors caused by bacteria and mold.

Put Vinegar to the Test

Don’t worry please, your clothes will not smell like vinegar. Just try it and see for yourself. Here’s how:

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Vinegar in Wash

Use only white distilled vinegar.

Wash your clothes as you normally would but don’t use any product other than your regular detergent.

Pour 1 cup of vinegar into the machine on the rinse cycle.

Alternatively, if you are using a front-loading machine with a product distributor, pour the vinegar into the compartment where you’d normally put other additives, like fabric softener.

That’s it. Now I leave it to you to test the effectiveness. Wash your clothes using vinegar and then do a feel and smell test. I love the way my clothes smell since I started using vinegar. Truly fresh and clean.

Other Ways to Use Vinegar For Laundry

  • Perspiration: Apply its full strength to perspiration stains and odors before washing.
  • Stain Remover: Can be used with equal parts water as a stain remover for food stains such as tomato and mustard. It is also an ingredient in homemade carpet cleaner and other stain removers.
  • Deodorizer: Prewash smelly clothes (from smoke, humidity, or something else) using just vinegar in the wash cycle, then wash with detergent.
  • Soak: Boil a mix of vinegar and water (1 cup of vinegar to 1 large pot of water), remove from heat, add your dingy white towels and socks, and then soak overnight to return them to their original white. Wash normally after soaking.


Mary Ann

I'm a mom of 3 and spend a good chunk of my time cleaning and organizing our crazy home. My goal is to help people keep their homes tidy in a way that saves them time and money! I hope the resources on this site are a help to you and your family.

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