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Today's tip is one I've been using for almost a year now: the Vinegar Rinse.
No, not for my hair (though I've heard it's good for that purpose too)--for my LAUNDRY.
Instead of adding some Downy or Snuggle to the handy-dandy little fabric-softener dispenser in my washing mashine, I put in about 1/4 cup white vinegar and fill the dispenser the rest of the way with cold water.
The vinegar works really well at getting the extra soap out of the clothes and even softens them. BONUS: unlike fabric softener, the Vinegar Rinse doesn't cause your towels to be less absorbent. BIGGER BONUS: Vinegar costs less than $2 a gallon. Fabric softener costs more than $5 a gallon. A gallon of vinegar lasts twice as long as a gallon of fabric softener, so I save $8 with each gallon of vinegar I use.
I hang a good deal of laundry on my outdoor clothesline when the weather permits, and the clothes are soft enough to satisfy everyone in the family. When I do put something in the dryer, I add about 1/3 of a dryer sheet, because static cling is not something the vinegar takes care of well.
With only 1/4 cup vinegar per load, my clothing does not smell like salad. Since I'm fragrance-sensitive, it doesn't bother me that they don't smell "April Fresh." I like the scent of air-dried clothing without the extra perfume anyway.
Last week some readers asked me to post a pic on my blog. I know you were really after what SFO Mom looks like in goggles, but you're not going to get that one. Sorry. (No, I'm not, actually...) This will have to suffice. Here I am in my Outdoor Laundry Room.
Vinegar Rinse in the laundry works for me.