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This post first appeared on Piping Rock. All content is theirs.

Vinegar seems like an unlikely candidate to wash clothes with. After all, the scent is usually offensive, and most of us are cautious about even adding it to edible dishes. So, it may seem shocking to think that we’re suggesting to use it in the laundry room!

Yet, here we are. Suggesting it. 

There’s a good reason for us too, since contrary to initial hesitancy, it is a powerful addition to any wash cycle. 

To reduce your fears that we’ve lost our minds, here are the 4 ways that vinegar helps boost your weekly (or biweekly) chore: 


1. Keep Dark Clothing Dark 

Vinegar Laundry

One way to use vinegar is to keep your dark clothes the same shade you bought them! Usually, when we wash black, or dark-hued clothing, the detergent can leave a residue that makes the fabric fade over time. This is where vinegar comes in. Adding 1/2 a cup of White Vinegar to the last wash cycle will ensure your clothes staying dark, the way you want them to be. 


2. Pet Hair? 

Pets are adorable. That’s a fact.  Pets hair is not adorable. That is also a fact. So, what can you do to prevent the onslaught of a shirt or dress covered in a new layer of fur? *ding ding ding*. Use vinegar. By adding 1/2 a cup in the wash, you’ll help ward off the accumulation of lint or fur that is on clothes pre-wash. The result: beautiful looking items, without a hint of your animal.


3. Soften Your Linens 

Vinegar Laundry Img

Photo: Kristin Lanzetta

Who doesn’t enjoy fuzzy blankets and cozy cotton shirts? Vinegar plays a role in keeping your favorite lazy day things soft. It naturally softens fabric, so you don’t have to use artificial softeners. Just add 1/2 a cup to the final rinse cycle. Add a few drops of an essential oil, like 100% Pure Lavender Oil for a gentle, natural scent. 


4. Brighten Your Whites, Naturally

Like dark clothes, you want white clothes to stay standard. The presence of acetic acid will remove any residue, keeping your clothes bright.


Vinegar Laundry

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