Vintage homemaking tip :: away with washday woes!

“If today is your washday… let’s make that chore fun! Don’t just wash. Let’s wash and accomplish something. How? Get the thrill and satisfaction of seeing your clothes snowy white.

This is not an approved method written by any authority. I am no authority. This is my own method which I experimented with and found successful. Many have tried it and found it “the lazy woman’s way” to beautiful laundry which makes any woman proud.

Gather up all of your white clothes. (This does not refer to some new synthetics which do not take hot water.) Put them in your washing machine. Set the water on “hot”. Be sure that you have lots of hot water in your tank.

Do not overload your machine. Let’s underload it today. Add bleach and detergent to the hot water.

After your washing machine has been running about two minutes and you are sure that the soap is well mixed among clothes with the bleach… turn the machine off – then let the clothes stand about ten minutes. After this period the dirt starts clinging to the fibers again – no matter what brand of soap you use. So do not let it stand longer than ten minutes. If you cannot turn your machine off manually, pull out the electric plug. Do not turn any dials. You will want the complete cycle to run it’s course. After ten minutes, turn the machine back on and let it go!

This method saves individual bleaching and avoids possible rotting of your clothes by using too much bleach each time. Also, we usually bleach two or three articles each week and then what do we do? Put them right back in with all the soap-filmed clothes! Don’t do this. Bleach all of your clothes at one time; wash them together and they will not accumulate the film that causes dirty, yellow clothes and depressing washdays.

These clothes are now practically, but not completely soap-free. For those of you who want to do a thorough job, follow this second step:

Run the same load of clothes through the entire cycle again, this time using a water softener or vinegar and no soap. I use vinegar because it’s cheaper and really… we all have it in our homes. This will brighten your clothes by removing remaining soap film. It will also remove the gray from your dark clothes and brighten your colored ones. When I use vinegar, I put about a cup to a machine load of clothes.

Another way to put the gray right back into your clothes is to use too much soap. Test your particular machine. The water varies in different localities. Feel the water that you are washing your clothes in. If the water is soft when you rub your fingers together in it, and your fingers slip, then you have enough soap!

~ 1962 Heloise’s Housekeeping Hints


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