Laundry sheets aren’t just for making clothes feel soft and smell good. They can also reduce the dreaded static cling that worsens during the winter months. But, they shouldn’t be used in every load of laundry.
Laundry sheets can do harm to certain types of clothes, like flame-resistant clothing, athletic wear, and water-repellent fabrics. They can interfere with the self-extinguishing ability in children’s pajamas. Towels can become less absorbent after constant laundering with dryer sheets. And, athletic wear can become less moisture-wicking than when you bought them. In these cases, using wool dryer balls, like this quality pack from Handy Laundry Store, is a better option.
So, what can you do with those left-over dryer sheets? And, can dryer sheets be upcycled and used after going through the dryer?
You can actually do a lot with dryer sheets that don’t have anything to do with laundry. And for some hacks, you can use them after they’ve already served their original purpose. That’s a definite win in our books.
Here are some of our faves.
1. Repel Bugs
Many websites claim that dryer sheets repel mosquitoes. While there’s no proven evidence to support this claim, there have been studies involving other insects. In particular, a Kansas State University study found that Bounce dryer sheets repelled fungus gnats. Other studies found that other “garden pests” were also repelled by dryer sheets, including mites, weevils, and beetles.
The ingredient that repels the bugs is most likely linalool, which is derived from bug-repelling plants like lavender and basil. Linalool is also found in mosquito repellant. So, go ahead and stuff some dryer sheets into your pockets, they may actually repel some of those dreaded female mosquitos.
2. Sharpen Scissors
Have your scissor blades gone dull over time? You can grab a used or new dryer sheet to sharpen the blades. Just cut through the dryer sheet several times, and presto, your blades should be sharper for at least a while.
Even Bob Vila vouched for this hack, so it’s gotta be true!
3. Clean Your Baking Sheet
Add a couple of dryer sheets to your baking sheets to get rid of baked-on grease and grossness.
First, add warm water to your baking sheet, and then add the dryer sheets. Leave for a few hours, and make sure to wash your baking sheet with soap and warm water thoroughly afterward.
4. Tame Flyaways
Dryer sheets are made to help get rid of static electricity in clothes. But, could it help flyaways in your hair? The resounding answer is yes, but I wouldn’t make it a regular practice.
5. Add To Your Gym Bag
The deodorizing power of dryer sheets is good for stinky gym bags too. Or you could place them in your tennis shoes to get rid of any lingering odors.
6. Remove Deodorant Stains
When you are in a hurry and accidentally get deodorant on your shirt, it’s the pits. Grab a used dryer sheet to get out the deodorant quickly. Just rub it over the deodorant stain quickly back and forth and the deodorant should come out easily. Then, brush it off.
7. Use On Your Baseboards
Really, anywhere that hair, dust, and dirt collect, a dryer sheet can pick up the mess. Grab a new or used dryer sheet and swipe against baseboards, blinds, or just your floor to pick up debris.