This little trick will save you time and money on laundry day, and you’ll never worry about running out of dryer sheets again. This is the best of all the dryer sheet alternatives.
This little tip was one that came into my inbox a few years ago in one of those little round-ups of different tips that get forwarded around the world in email. You know the ones. Things like “67 uses for a banana peel” and “101 ways to make life easier for your cat”, or my favorite, “12 Homekeeping Tools That Will Change Your Life“. Those ones. One of the tips suggested using tinfoil to prevent static cling. I just had to try it out for myself. I had never really considered using dryer sheet alternatives before, but I was intrigued.
Dryer Sheet Alternatives to Prevent Static Cling
No matter what brand of dryer sheet you use, whether it’s Bounce, Snuggle, Seventh-Generation, or another popular brand, if you live somewhere that gets dry in the winter, you can always tell right away when you’ve forgotten to add one in. Static cling when you’re trying to fold a load of laundry quickly is not your friend. When I use dryer sheets, I always try to use a brand that’s natural, biodegradable, healthier, safer, and smells great, but it’s still nice to know there’s another option out there for when I run out. Plus, it’s just neat to do little experiments and try things out.
Another recent homekeeping experiment: DIY Peppermint Oil Spider Repellent: Does it Work?
So here’s how it works: You start out with 2-3 sheets of aluminum foil, and you ball them up loosely together. Each sheet should be around 12-16″ long, but the size does not have to be exact. You just want to pull off a few sheets that are in that general range.
Then you toss the aluminum foil ball into your dryer along with your clothes! That’s it! There are so many great uses for aluminum foil.
The first time I tried this, the ball came out looking a little smoother after running through the first load from bumping around in there, but other than that, no real visible change.
You’re Now Static-Free
And the laundry? Well, it still looked just like the same laundry from my everyday laundry routine, but it was actually completely static-free! It’s a little bit amazing, and you can supposedly use the same ball for up to a year. You may find that the ball decreases in size slowly over time due to it getting compacted and balled up more tightly from bumping around in the dryer.
When you decide it’s time for a new tinfoil dryer ball, simply toss the old one in the recycling bin.
See also: How to Clean Scorch Marks Off an Iron
Try Another Dryer Sheet Alternative
If you find you ran out of dryer sheets, or you’re looking for a hypoallergenic, eco friendly alternative way to deal with wrinkles and static issues, there are a few other options you might like to try as well.
While the tinfoil ball trick for the dryer is a great unscented option, if you’ve ever used dryer sheets before, you know that one of the benefits they provide is the fresh, clean laundry fragrance they add to your laundry. Many of us love scented laundry products to deal with odor issues, or just because it’s so satisfying to fold a big load of freshly-scented laundry.
My other favorite substitute for dryer sheets is to make a set of DIY wool dryer balls, which work for removing static, but also allow you to add a few drops of essential oils to them before tossing them in the dryer. This solution isn’t quite as quick and easy of course, but it lasts a long time and is also incredibly environmentally friendly.
If static electricity in your laundry isn’t an issue where you live, you may want to simply try adding a few drops of fragrance oil to a damp washcloth that you throw into your dryer and reuse with each load of laundry.
If softening your sheets and towels is your goal, you may be surprised to learn that vinegar can be used as a fabric softener with great success, so that’s yet another option to explore.
I hope one of these options comes in handy for you next time you run out of dryer sheets, or if you just want to do a little experimenting like me. I love learning little tricks to help with everyday household chores,
Do you have another alternative to dryer sheets that you use?
Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.