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Vinegar makes doing laundry easy Part - 2

Doing the laundry can be a demanding chore. There are stains to remove and nasty odours to deal with. Ironing clothes brings in other problems - the crease doesn't hold or the hot iron leaves shiny marks on the garment. Well, vinegar can help with all these issues. Find out the wonders of vinegar and how it can make daily chores seem so easy.

Vinegar is an absolutely amazing and incredibly diverse product with a potential of doing a multitude of things that commercially available household products can. The advantage of using vinegar to accomplish regular household chores is that while it delivers satisfactory results it is also easy on the environment and on our bodies. It leaves no harsh chemical residues, is easy to source and comes cheap.

In this section, I am continuing with the practical uses of vinegar in doing laundry. In the first part of this series, I discussed vinegar's effectiveness in removing stubborn stains, softening clothes and as an anti-bacterial agent, among other uses. The article covers further uses of vinegar, in the laundry.

Ugly shiny marks on ironed clothes

Do you hate the way a hot iron can leave clothes looking shiny, at certain spots? Freshly ironed, dark coloured clothes generally get shiny spots that aren't quite pleasing to the eye. These marks appear over pockets, the zipper and folds and on the cuffs and the collar. I hate them. And here's a trick that I use to get rid of them. Vinegar helps me do away with these irritants.

Mix vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio and transfer the solution into a spray bottle. It's fine if you don't have one, as you'll still be able to make the solution work for you. So, you either spray the solution or use a cloth soaked in the solution over the affected part of the garment. Gently, rub the areas where these marks appear. That done, just iron over the area and voila, the shiny areas would appear normal. Repeat, if it doesn't give you desired results the first time.

Helps preserve colours

My towels and bedcovers would look dull, after a few washes because frequent washing tend to fade them and they lose their sheen. To preserve their vibrant colours soak them in a bucket of cold water to which half a cup of vinegar has been added before you begin using them. This simple trick makes the colours stronger and washing the items frequently has little effect on their colour.

It helps if you repeat this procedure every few washes.

Use when dyeing fabric

Vinegar is also used to fasten colours when dyeing fabric. So, if you decide to give your creative pursuits, a go and choose to create a tie & dye masterpiece or something similar, remember that vinegar could be one your best aides.

Add a cup of vinegar to the bath of dye that you soak the fabric in. The colour will set properly and last long.

Setting creases on clothes

Sometimes a crease won't hold on, no matter how hard you press down the iron. I make a solution of vinegar and water in a 1:2 ratio and dip a handkerchief or any other normal piece of cloth in it. Place this saturated piece of cloth over the carefully folded place that you need to set the crease, and iron immediately.

Removing creases on clothes

Follow the procedure mentioned above, setting a crease, if you want to remove a stubborn crease. Make sure the creased area is stretched out when you do this.

Remove the smell of bleach

If you use bleaching liquids in your laundry, you'll only be too familiar with the distinct odour of bleach lingering in your garments. There is a trick that you can use to remove the offensive odour from bleached clothes.

Add half-a-cup of vinegar in the final rinse to have the clothes smelling fresh.

Remove the smell of smoke from clothes

Cigarette smell, cigar smell and the smell of firewood can become entrapped in clothes. To get rid of the unpleasant smoke smell from your clothes, soak them in a bucket of hot water to which half-a-cup of vinegar is added. Allow the clothes to soak for 30 minutes, before washing them.

Removing stains of dark aerated drinks, red wine and juice

If you are at a party and if you or someone accidentally spills red wine, juice or a cola-drink on your lovely dress, don't panic, and don't rush to the washroom to wash off the stain in running water. That won't help. Wait until you're home and then get down to business. Vinegar removes spots caused by red wine, juice and cola drinks, from a variety of fabrics - be they polyester or cotton. You need to apply it directly on the stain, let it stand for 5 minutes and then gently scrub the stained portion, before putting it for washing.

Deodorise your woollens

Woollen cardigans, sweaters and shawls can get a weird musty smell, if they haven't been used for long. To get rid of that smell rinse them in a bath of equal parts of water and vinegar, to leave them smelling fresh.

Remove grease marks

I have often had to deal with grease on my favourite and most expensive clothes. Especially, when the car comes back from service. The liberal use of grease in the door hinges draws to my clothes like a magnet. I have a solution for it.

Dab a piece of cloth in pure vinegar and gently rub over the spot. If grease is visible on the fabric, sprinkle talcum powder over the spot and let it sit for half a day. The talc will absorb all the grease off the fabric. Scrape off the powder and treat the grease stain with vinegar. Once done, wash the garment.

For fluffy soft blankets

Blankets lose their fluffiness, with use. To get them soft and fluffy, add a glass of white vinegar in a large bucket of water and soak the blanket in it. Leave overnight, for best results. It works beautifully on all types of blankets (woollen and acrylic). It also removes excess detergent and leaves them feeling smooth and velvety.

Clean the iron's base

The sole plate of irons blackens with regular use. It is actually an accumulation of burnt fibres and excess detergent from the clothes that have been ironed. To get rid of the blackish stuff on the base, prepare a paste using baking soda and vinegar and give it a good wipe. A few swipes and your iron will look as good as new.

Clean a steam iron

After a while, the water storage tank in steam irons, collect mineral deposits. This also chokes the steam vents. The best way to remove the mineral deposits is to fill the tank with a mix of vinegar and water in a 1;1 ratio. Let the solution stand in the tank for an hour, after which you plug in the iron and let it steam until the solution dries out completely.

Unplug from the electric socket and fill the storage tank again and give it a good shake, before emptying it out. Refill the tank, yet again, but this time plug it in and once the water begins steaming, use the iron on an old cloth piece. The steam holes will squirt muck, which will the dissolved mineral deposits. Continue ironing, until the iron stops spewing dirt along with the steam.

Do you have tips of your own you'd like to share? Please leave them in the comment section. Do you find these tips helpful? If yes, go ahead and like and share them with your friends.

Article by Juana
Juana is a freelance writer, with years of experience, creating content for varied online portals. She holds a degree in English Literature and has worked as a teacher and as a soft skill trainer. An avid reader, she writes on a variety of topics ranging from health, travel, education and personality development.

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Author: Neelam08 Nov 2017 Member Level: Gold   Points : 0

Earlier I heard about the use of citric things like Lemon and vinegar to remove stains from a cloth which has stains but reading this article I got to know about the broader aspect of this home remedy which I used to think is limited only to the removal of stains.
Especially the one to make crease of the clothes while ironing and I am keen to try these remedies but I am confused and want to clear a doubt does it harm clothes in any way?
Also removal of the smell of clothes from like smell of a cigarette (this is also an unheard fact for me).

Author: Natarajan13 Nov 2017 Member Level: Gold   Points : 0

The setting the crease tip is very useful, some shirts and trousers often do not retain the crease when we iron them. I was not aware of using vinegar to clear the clogged tips or spray holes in the spray/steam iron. Very informative articles detailing with the simple yet effective use of vinegar in our daily life.

Author: Juana17 Nov 2017 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 2


Vinegar can also be used to remove salt deposits from the shower head in the bathroom. Fill a plastic bag with a solution of vinegar and water and dunk the shower head into it. Secure the plastic bag to the pipe, using a cord. Leave it overnight - the vinegar dissolves the salts and unclog all the holes in the showerhead. The same trick may be tried on other sanitary fittings, such as faucets.

Author: Juana17 Jul 2019 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 4

Yes, vinegar has many uses, and it is one of the most used items in my home. I use white vinegar for cleaning windows and in the mop water for sparkling windows and floors.

The ironing tip provided in the article is tried and tested. I always used a combination of water and vinegar for ironing my husband's uniforms; stopped trusting the dhobi after a few clothes came back damaged. The crease comes out stiff and holds well.

Vinegar can also be used to remove creases. My mother used to rub vinegar and water solution when our clothes had been folded for hemming while lengthening our clothes. Just apply the solution and iron and voila the crease disappears. You might have to repeat it a couple of times.

Some clothes, especially those made from synthetic fabric, don't iron well. The wrinkles don't go away, and you can't use too hot an iron because the material would burn. In such a case, splash some vinegar and water solution on the garment and proceed to iron.

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