Skip to main content

The 2 secret ingredients your laundry routine is missing

No longer just products in your kitchen pantry, vinegar and baking soda have become staples in the green-cleaning movement. From deodorizing your home to deep cleaning your bathroom, these simple products have so many practical uses, including being efficient cleaning agents. Plus, since they’re all-natural and toxin-free, they give you some peace of mind when you’re cleaning your home. Did you know, though, that vinegar and baking soda should also be staples in your laundry room? Both products act as boosters to your current laundry detergent and work to get your machine and your clothes sparkling clean. Here’s how these two secret ingredients are game-changers when it comes to washing your clothes.

Benefits of using vinegar in laundry

One big advantage to adding vinegar to your laundry is that it helps clean your washing machine. It’s mildly acidic, so if you have hard water or a lot of residue buildup from laundry detergent, it can break up those particles and get your washing machine squeaky clean. One common problem with washing machines is that they eventually start to stink over the years. Vinegar is a natural deodorizer, so it can neutralize those foul washing machine odors.

Related Videos

Does vinegar help smelly laundry?

Not only does vinegar get those bad odors out of the washing machine, it also deodorizes those gross smells that linger in your laundry. It’s perfect for combating smelly work clothes, activewear, and those grimy socks.

Should I add baking soda to laundry?

Baking soda has some similar benefits to vinegar, since it deodorizes and uses its abrasive powers to work off detergent residue and hard-water mineral deposits in your machine. In addition to these benefits, baking soda also makes your white clothes whiter and brightens colored fabrics. It even acts as a natural fabric softener since it helps keep mineral deposits and detergent particles away from clothes during the rinse cycle, which would ordinarily cause fabrics to feel stiff.

Can baking soda ruin clothes?

Due to the high pH in baking soda, it can make certain dyes fade, particularly with natural fibers like wool, cashmere, and silk. For these fabrics, vinegar is a better option for a natural detergent booster.

Can you use vinegar and baking soda together?

You may be tempted to combine these powerful natural ingredients to get double the deodorizing and cleaning benefits for your laundry. However, since vinegar has a low pH and baking soda has a high pH, combining the two at the same time will cause them to cancel out each other’s effects. Instead of being left with no benefits, choose one ingredient per load, or use them at different times during the washing cycle.

How do I use vinegar in my washing machine?

  1. Load your washing machine with clothing and laundry detergent like you normally would.
  2. Add one cup of vinegar to the compartment for fabric softener, and run the machine as normal.

How to use baking soda in laundry

  1. Fill the drum partly with water and add one cup of baking soda.
  2. Add laundry detergent and clothing, and run the machine as normal.

Can I use baking soda in a front-loading washing machine?

If your washing machine is a front loader, you can simply add a cup of dry baking soda to the inside of the drum. Then, load in your clothing, add detergent to the dispenser, and start the machine. Baking soda should not be added to the automatic dispenser.

How to clean your washing machine with baking soda and vinegar

  1. Turn on the hottest possible water your washing machine allows.
  2. Add one cup of baking soda to the washing machine drum.
  3. Add one cup of vinegar to the fabric softener compartment.
  4. Run the machine’s washing cycle.

You can also scrub the inside of your machine with baking soda and a wet cloth or sponge to make the drum shine. Follow up with vinegar to wash away any remaining particles.

You don’t need extra chemicals to give your laundry a boost or to get your washing machine looking and smelling great. Both baking soda and vinegar are great natural products that enhance your laundry detergent’s performance to get your clothing brighter, fresher, and cleaner.

Editors' Recommendations

10 helpful tips to keep bugs out of your apartment or condo
Keep bugs out of your home without calling the exterminator
Dead bug with pest control sign

Cleaning your apartment might be enough to keep your place looking nice, but it may not be enough to keep pesky bugs from making your home their home. Keeping bugs out of an apartment or condo is a different game than keeping them out of a house. When you live in an apartment building or condo that's part of a larger unit, bugs can quickly come from community spaces into your space. If your neighbors have habits that attract bugs, it doesn’t take much for those critters to come into your rooms, too.

Your apartment or condo location can also contribute to the number of bugs in your living area, such as if your apartment is near the woods or close to the outdoor dumpsters. Also, apartment complexes and condos often have several entrances, which increase the chances insects have to get into your home.

Read more
Should you power wash your house in the fall? Here are 5 things to wash at the end of the season
Power wash your house in the fall - you'll be happy with the results
Man spraying roof with power washer

The fall season is a prime time to check some of those pesky household chores off your to-do list. With the kids back in school, autumn is a time to wrap up all things summer and prepare for winter. This includes fall floor-to-ceiling cleaning, which is tedious but necessary work. Take solace knowing there's at least one quick task, and maybe even a little fun: power washing your home's exterior. With just five quick power washing projects, you can have your house sparkling clean and prepared to survive the winter.

With end-of-season projects in mind, check out the five most important power washing projects you should undertake to keep your home clean, protected, and ready for winter. You'll be surprised how satisfying power washing your house in the fall can be, and we promise you'll love the results.

Read more
9 ingenious storage tricks for small bedrooms with no closets for anyone running out of storage space
Storage ideas to free up space in your bedrooms with no closets
Woman storing folded clothes

Bedrooms are not just places to sleep, even though that's their main intention. Bedrooms also store clothes, shoes, and other personal items that you don't keep in other rooms of your home. But what if you have a small bedroom without a closet? Where should all the stuff go without having a cluttered and disorganized room?

A cluttered room can cause unnecessary stress and an overall sense of discomfort, which is the last feeling you want from where you're supposed to rest. If you have small bedrooms with no closets in your home, don’t worry. We have nine brilliant storage ideas that are also stylish so you can declutter and relax.

Read more