How to Keep Towels and Sheets Soft After Multiple Washes
Out of all fabrics, towels and sheets are the ones we want to stay the softest – but they’re often the ones that get the brunt of daily wear. With repeated uses between washes, towels and sheets collect lots of grime and germs – but, after multiple washes, even the most high-quality towels lose their fluff and the best sheets their silky softness. With time (and sometimes, not very much), new towels and sheets get flat, scratchy, and rough. Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Here are a few simple hacks to keep towels soft and sheets as smooth as the day you bought them.
Separate Your Towels and Sheets
First steps first: try and keep your towels and sheets in separate loads. It’s best to wash like with like, and this is no exception! Sheets and towels have very different fabric weights – most bath towels are thick and heavy, while linen sheets, for example, are very light. Fabrics of different weights will wash and dry at different rates, so towels and sheets that are washed together will probably end up unevenly clean with wet patches that turn stiff when they dry. Also, the smaller towels tend to get rolled up into sheets in the washer and dryer, which prevents them from getting the best clean and leads to flat, stiff, and unhappy fabrics. For best results, you’ll want to wash sheets with sheets and towels with towels.
Keep Your Loads Light
Overfull loads can be one of the biggest roadblocks to soft towels and sheets. Packing a wash cycle full of heavy towels or big sheets puts a strain on the washing machine and doesn’t give it the room it needs to clean out all of the dirt and detergent in the laundry’s fibers. Also, like drying different fabrics together, crowding a dryer makes for damp towels and sheets that dry hard and rough.
To avoid these issues, you’ll want to lighten up your loads. Try washing large bedsheets alone and big bath towels in batches of three or four with smaller washcloths or hand towels for super soft fabrics.
Try Extra Add-Ins
Though it seems counter-intuitive, adding lots of fabric softener to your towels and sheets won’t make them extra soft. Fabric softener can collect and build up, particularly in towel fibers, which turns the fabrics stiff in the dryer. Instead of fabric softener, try these additives to boost the softness of your towels and sheets.
Baking soda is a great option for softening these fabrics. By adding half a cup of baking soda to a regular amount of detergent (like the lovely Natural Liquid Laundry Detergent from Charlie’s Soap), you can soften up your towels and sheets and get rid of any lingering musty smells and mildew.
Distilled white vinegar is another fantastic addition to laundry. Just add a quarter cup of white vinegar to the fabric softener compartment of your washer to soften up your towels and sheets. White vinegar also helps brighten whites and set the colors of the fabric to keep them from fading over time. Since the chemicals in regular bleach can also damage the textured surface that makes fluffy towels fluffy, alternatives like white vinegar used with Charlie’s Soap Oxygen NonChlorine Bleach are great for limiting your use of chlorine bleach. Just be careful not to use both baking soda and vinegar in the same load – their reaction could cause the washing machine to overflow. On their own, baking soda and white vinegar are great options for rejuvenating towels and sheets and bringing them back to their soft and fluffy selves.
Watch the Heat
While washing towels and sheets in hot water and drying them on a high-heat cycle seems like the best way to kill bacteria and fluff up towels, too much heat actually wears down on the fabrics’ fibers! Not only does high heat stiffen fabric fibers, it can also shorten the lifespan of your towels and sheets. Try cold-water washing and medium- or low-heat drying cycles for long-lasting towels and sheets with maximum softness.
Just like with clothing, washing towels and sheets too often can cause the fibers to break down and lose their shape and color. But washing these textiles too little can lead to a buildup of germs and odors. It’s important to strike a perfect balance. Ideally, sheets should be washed once a week or once every two weeks, and towels should be washed after 3-4 uses at the most.
The Charlie’s Soap Advantage
Here at Charlie’s Soap, we play the long game. While our competitors are focused on covering towels and sheets with a surface-level scent, here at Charlie’s Soap, we value getting down into the nitty-gritty and really cleaning your fabrics. For absorbent, clean towels, and soft, long-lasting sheets, try out our detergents! Our products are free of artificial fragrances, dyes, or toxic chemicals, and when you wash with Charlie’s, you can trust that our product is doing the most to clean your towels and sheets while keeping them soft in the long-term. Alongside these additional tips, the deeper clean from our products will leave you with a longer-lasting softness that smells good and feels even better.