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Laundry Tips
Aug 6th, 2009 by sovicki

Bleeding of Colors: Your red shirt got mixed in with other clothes and ruined them? First off, DON’T DRY THEM! Wash again with regular detergent and color-safe bleach. If that didn’t work, Rit®, the makers of clothes dye, makes a color remover that works wonders and doesn’t cost much. To prevent bleeding in the first place, wash in cold water; I also use a cup of salt OR a scoop of Oxi Clean® with every load.
Blood on Clothes: Pour hydrogen peroxide on blood and rinse with cold water. If some blood remains, repeat. (Submitted by Michele Dutcher)
Burn / Scorch Marks: If the fabric is washable, brush it gently with a soft brush or dry sponge to remove loose carbon particles. Then, wash the fabric with regular detergent and color-safe bleach. This will permanently weaken the fabric even more than the scorch has, but the scorch may no longer be noticeable.
Burnt Stuff on Iron: Rub iron with aluminum foil to remove burnt on starch, etc.
Deodorant Stains on the Underarms of Washable Shirts: Sponge on white vinegar (or soak stain in it); wait 30 minutes. Launder shirts in the hottest water safe for the fabric. Using an enzyme detergent or a detergent with bleach alternative check care labels to be sure this is okay). I sometimes put liquid laundry detergent right on the area, leave it for five to ten minutes, then wash. To prevent: Let deodorant dry before dressing. And don’t let stains sit! Apply prewash spray or liquid detergent ASAP, then launder. Every third or fourth washing, use the hottest water safe for the shirts.
Down Comforters / Jackets: These can, indeed, be washed rather than dry cleaned. Any stains, such as the grime on the cuffs of a jacket, should be spot-cleaned with a pre-treater, then rinsed with water. Wash the item in the gentle cycle with mild detergent. The key is to ensure the down is rinsed extremely well. Then, place in the dryer rather than line drying. This allows the feathers to plump up again. Place large knotted towels or tennis balls in the dryer with it to help fluff the down. The only caution is, if the item has weak seams or fragile fabric it could “explode” and leave you with only down. If there are stains remaining, place it (on a blanket) outdoors in full sunshine for a day or two. This often helps. If not, at least your comforter will have that outdoor fresh smell. (Submitted by Koilaf and michelle6802)
Dryer Tip: Include a few tennis balls in each dryer cycle. The tennis balls not only cut drying time by 25% – 50%, but also fluff the clothes to a delicate softness, and towels with be especially fluffy. (Submitted by a site visitor)
Fabric Softener: I have been using an old dish towel as a fabric softener sheet. I pour a couple of capfuls of Downey on it and throw it in the dryer. It has taken over a year to go thru a bottle of (small) Downey fabric softener. I add more Downey about every 15 loads or just when I notice a little static. It helps to use a towel that is distinct from the other laundry. I use a pink towel, which is a one of a kind in our house. (Submitted by a site visitor)
Fading: Turn dark clothes inside out and wash in the coolest water possible; dry on lowest heat. For all-black clothes and linens, throw in a box of black Rit® dye every 8-10 washes or so to keep black clothes black.
Foggy Mirrors and Glass: Spray a generous amount of good ol’ fashioned shaving cream (not gel) onto the mirror or window and rub in with a clean cloth. Use a new clean cloth until all streaks are gone. This will prevent fogging as long as you don’t wipe or clean the glass.
Gasoline On Clothing: Gasoline is an oil based product, therefore, use another oil based product to pull out the odor (which is left because all the gas oil has not been removed yet). You can use any kind of oil that normally washes out of clothing, like baby oil. Put some of the oil into the washer along with the clothes, let it swish around for a while, then put in the detergent and all should come out okay. Be sure not to use a dryer to dry these clothes, as it could cause a fire.
General Stain Removal for Clothing: Read the label! If it says dry-clean only, dry-clean it. If it’s washable, try cleaning fluid, spot remover, or petroleum-based pre-wash spray. Place garment stain side down on paper towels and dab cleaner on stain using a terry-cloth towel or scrub brush. Check paper towels underneath and move frequently so there’s always a clean area under the stain to absorb soil. Let area dry and check it. If stain remains, treat with prewash spray and launder. Before drying, check again. Still visible? Repeat steps.
Glitter on Clothing: That new sparkly shirt shedding glitter all over the place? Spray with aerosol hair spray to make it stay put. Wash separately from other clothes, or at least wash it inside out if you must wash with other articles of clothing.
Grease Stains: Sprinkle a generous amount of cornstarch or baby powder over the grease stain, allow it to sit for a couple of minutes, then brush the powder off. The powder absorbs the grease and it brushes off with the powder.
Gum On Clothing: Use egg whites to remove gum on clothing. Brush egg white onto gum with a toothbrush. Let sit for 15 minutes and then launder on the items normally.
Ink Stains: The best way I have found to get out ink stains is to put rubbing alcohol on the stain – it disappears! This must be done before washing. (Submitted by Darvin Mossing)
Laundry Basket Freshener: Place a fabric softener sheet in the bottom of your laundry basket (remember to change it weekly.) You can also simply sprinkle some baking soda in the bottom of your basket and that will help absorb the odors as well.
Linen Closet: In the linen closet, place cotton balls that have been sprayed with your favorite scent. Once they are dry, place them in corners and on the shelves.
Lint: Keep lint off dark clothes by not washing them with towels, washcloths, dishrags, etc. This is where a majority of the lint comes from and it’s just easier to eliminate them. (Submitted by michelle6802) Another way to get lint to stay off clothes in the washer is to add 1 cup distilled white vinegar to the load with the detergent.
Lipstick: Use petroleum jelly for removing lipstick stains. Another possibility is to rub in a little vegetable shortening and then launder as normal.
Mildew Stains: Shake or brush the item to remove loose growth. Presoak in cold water. Wash in hot water with heavy duty detergent. For whites, add 1/2 cup bleach. If colored, use color-safe bleach. If staining remains on white items, repeat washing before drying. Dry thoroughly; heat and sun tend to kill mildew.
Mothball Alternative: A better idea than using mothballs is to take your leftover soap slivers and put them in a vented plastic bag. You place the bag with seasonal clothes before packing them away. Not only will the scent prevent them from moth harm but also they’ll smell great when you pull them out. I especially like this for sweaters, which can be difficult to remove the odor of mothballs from. Using soap you simply have a clean smell rather than the smell of an attic.
Mothball Odors: This odor is a hard one to get rid of. Your first step is ventilation – air out larger items outside for a day or two; for clothes, fluff in the dryer with fabric softener sheets for a couple of hours. Odor removers such as Febreeze® may help. If an entire room or closet is affected, place trays of activated charcoal (available in pet supply stores) in the corners of the rooms to absorb the smell.
Panty Hose / Nylons: To stop a run in panty hose, dab nail polish over the run; clear polish is best, for obvious reasons, but any color will do. To strengthen nylons, spray with aerosol hair spray when you first put them on.
Perspiration Stains/Odor: Soak the stained shirt in equal parts ammonia and water and add a few Tbls. of liquid dish soap overnight. Then, wash the shirts as usual.
Rust and Mineral Stains: Add 1 cup of bottled lemon juice in the wash to remove discoloration from cotton laundry.
Soiled Shirt Collars: Take a small paintbrush and brush hair shampoo into soiled shirt collars before laundering. Shampoo is made to dissolve body oils.
Spaghetti Stains: Wet the fabric and then sprinkle with powdered dish detergent. Scrub gently with a toothbrush. Rinse the item and launder normally.
Sour Smelling Towels: Whenever possible, always use bleach when washing towels. If this is not possible (for colored towels), pour a cup of white vinegar or 1/4 cup Febreeze® into the washer with the towels and detergent. Never overload the washer with too many towels (or clothes, for that matter), as they will not have room to agitate and clean thoroughly. Never let a washed, wet load of laundry of any kind sit in the washer for long; dry as soon as possible. For a towel you are currently using, hang it in a fashion that will allow it to dry completely between uses; if thrown on the floor in a ball or folded over a towel bar, it can quickly mildew and the smell is hard to get rid of.
Travel Saver: Whenever you travel carry along a stain pretreatment stick. Taking the time to use it on stains before they set ensures that they will wash out when you get home.

White-Out / Liquid Paper and Permanent Marker Stains: Dab some sunscreen over the stain and rub off with a paper towel. Repeat until stain is gone.

Yellowed / Grayed Whites: Rit®, the makers of clothes dye, makes a white-wash that works well for bleachable and non-bleachable clothing that has yellowed or grayed. You can also hang yellowed clothes out to dry whenever possible to reduce the yellow.

Zippers: To make a zipper slide up and down more smoothly, rub a bar of soap over the teeth.

Cleaning Tips
Aug 6th, 2009 by sovicki

Ant Repellant: To keep ants out of the house, find where the ants are entering the house and sprinkle a “barrier” of cinnamon or any type of ground pepper to block their way. The spices are too hot for the ants to cross. (Submitted By: Tony & Sherry Lorsung) Cucumber peels have the same effect.

Bathroom Odors: Place an opened box of baking soda OR an open container of activated charcoal behind the toilet to absorb bathroom odors.

Blood Stains: Soak the stain in hydrogen peroxide, wash (don’t dry), and repeat if necessary. This tip works especially well for caret and clothes.

Carpet Stains: Baby wipes are miracle-workers on carpet stains, from motor oil to blood, they remove almost anything!

Candle Holders: To prevent the wax from melting and sticking to the inside of a votive candle holder, pour a bit of water in the holder, then place the candle on top. If you’re reading this tip too late, and there’s already wax stuck inside your candle holder, pop it in the freezer for an hour. The wax will chip right off.

Candle Wax: To remove wax from carpeting or other fabric, first scrape away any excess. Then, place a brown paper bag over the wax and run a warm iron over the bag. The wax will melt right into the bag! Continue moving the bag around as you pick up the wax so you are always using a clean section. If a little grease stain remains on carpet, sprinkle with baking soda and allow to sit overnight before vacuuming, which will remove the grease residue. If colored wax leaves a stain on carpet, blot with spot remover or carpet cleaner, following label directions.

Cast Iron Pans: To gently and effectively clean your cast iron skillets after most uses, wipe out excess food with a dry paper towel, then sprinkle salt inside the pan. Wipe clean with a clean, dry paper towel. The salt acts as an abrasive to scratch off any stuck-on particles of food without using soap and water, which can remove your seasoning. For stubborn stuck-on food, use a putty knife to scrape it off. You may, however, need to reseason the pan after doing this.

Chimney: To keep your chimney clean, throw a handful of salt on the fire.

Chrome: To remove rust from chrome, wipe it with aluminum foil dipped in Coke®. To polish chrome, use a crumbled up piece of aluminum foil and rub.

Cloudy Drinking Glasses: Soak them for an hour or longer in slightly warm white vinegar. Then, use a nylon-net or plastic dish scrubber to remove film. Still there? The damage may be etching (tiny scratches that occur in the dishwasher) and is permanent, sorry to say. To avoid this altogether, hand-wash your best glasses.

Coffee Grinder: Grind up a cup or so of rice in a coffee grinder to clean the grinder and sharpen its blades.

Copper: To polish copper, rub an ample amount of catsup on the copper and let it stand for 5 minutes. Rinse off the catsup with hot water and dry to find an incredible shine.

Crayon on Walls or Washable Wallpaper: Spray with WD-40®, then gently wipe, using a paper towel or clean cloth. If the mark is stubborn, sprinkle a little baking soda on a damp sponge and gently rub in a circular motion. If the WD-40® leaves a residue, gently wipe off with a sponge soaked in soapy water; rinse clean; blot dry. Another method is to use a hair dryer – it heats the wax and wipes away instantly. If the color remains, like red usually does, wet a cloth with bleach and wipe.

Deodorize dishes, pans, cutting boards or utensils with pungent odors by adding 1/4 cup of lemon juice to your dishwater.

Dishwashers: To clean mineral deposits from the inside of your dishwasher, pour in a container of Tang® Drink Mix and run the dishwasher (don’t put dishes in the dishwasher for this load).

Fireplace Soot Odor: In the Spring, when you’re fireplace will be out of commission for a while, clean out the ashes, then fill the fireplace with crumpled newspapers (non-glossy pages). Leave the newspapers for a couple of days, then discard.

Fish or Spoiled Food Odor: Place a bowl of white vinegar on the counter for a few hours. The odor will disappear for good.

Freshen a Garbage Disposal: Sprinkle baking soda in it along with a few drops dish-washing liquid. Scrub with a brush (a new toilet brush works great), getting under the rubber gasket and all around the inside. Then, turn on water and let the disposal run to flush thoroughly. For a fresh citrus scent, throw in a few cut up lemons or limes and run them through, too, using lots of water.

Freshen Laundry Basket: Place a fabric softener sheet in the bottom of your laundry basket (remember to change it weekly.) You can also simply sprinkle some baking soda in the bottom of your basket and that will help absorb the odors as well.

Freshen Linen Closet: In the linen closet place cotton balls that have been sprayed with your favorite scent. Once they are dry place them in corners and on the shelves.

George Foreman Grills: After removing the cooked food from the grill, place a paper towel soaked in water on each of the 2 cooking surfaces. Unplug the appliance, allow it to sit for 5-30 minutes (while you eat), then use the paper towels to effortlessly wipe out the grease and food particles.

Ink Stains: The best way I have found to get out ink stains is to put rubbing alcohol on the stain – it disappears! This must be done before washing. (Submitted by Darvin Mossing) For ink on the wall, wipe with bleach and it will disappear.

Kitty Litter: To keep cat litter fresh smelling, mix baby powder in with the litter.

Microwave Filth: Food splatters all over the inside of your microwave and cooks itself on after time. To easily remove this mess, place a sponge soaked in water in the microwave. Cook on high heat for 2 minutes, then allow it to sit without opening the microwave door, for 5 minutes. The filth is now ready to be wiped right off – no scrubbing – and your sponge is right there!

Microwave Odors: Keep a cup of baking soda in the microwave between uses to keep potatoes from smelling like bacon or other unusual combinations!

Mothball Substitute: Take your leftover soap slivers and put them in a vented plastic bag. You place the bag with seasonal clothes before packing them away. Not only will the scent prevent them from moth harm, but also they’ll smell great when you pull them out.

Odor-free Car: Place a few briquettes of charcoal under the seat of your car to absorb odors and keep it smelling fresh. (submitted by NIKEITA) Make sure to use the type without the starting fluid on them or your car will smell of fuel.

Paint on Carpet: Spray with Windex® and wipe clean. (Submitted by Richard Power)

Permanent Marker on Carpet: Dab a washcloth soaked in rubbing alcohol onto the marker stain. Do not rub it – just blot it – rotating the cloth to a clean spot every time.

Pet Urine on Carpet: First, blot up what you can with paper towels. Then, with warm, soapy water and a clean cloth, blot the area clean; rinse with clean water; blot until dry. Next, combine 1/3 cup white vinegar with 2/3 cup water and dab it on stain; rinse with clean water; blot until dry. Once the area is totally dry (at least 24 hours), sprinkle entire carpet with baking soda or rug deodorizer; vacuum after a few hours.

Photos Stuck Together: With a hair dryer on low, slowly melt them apart.

Roach Problem: Combine equal parts boric acid (a powder sold in hardware stores and drugstores) and sugar, mix well. Sprinkle in crevices and, if building or remodeling, between walls before putting up plaster board. Put the powder in jar lids; place lids behind the fridge and under sinks. Caution: Keep mixture away from children and pets.

Shower Doors: I have clear glass shower doors. I have tried everything from CLR®, to Comet®, to Clorox® – you name it, I’ve tried it. Today I decided to try something different. I found a bottle of Resolve® spot remover for carpet and fabric. I figured “Why not? I have tried everything else.” All I did was spray the Resolve® on the shower and with no effort ran a dish sponge over it and rinsed and every bit of the soap scum came off. (Submitted by Angela Cook)

Smashed Down Carpet: To make the carpet stand back up after moving a piece of furniture, place an ice cube on the spot. As it melts, the piles will go back up.

Smelly Cooking Hands: Simply rub your hands over a stainless steel utensil under running water. This works especially well for the odor of garlic, onions or fish.

Smelly Shoes: Simply fill a tube sock with kitty litter, baking soda, or tea leaves; tie the end closed; and place the filled socks in the shoes when you’re not wearing them. These sachets can be used over and over in any kind of shoe.

Sour Sponge: Soak the sponge in lemon juice and rinse it out. This will remove the odor for good but keep in mind that it is important to either dispose of, bleach, or run your sponge through your dishwasher regularly to keep bacteria from growing.

Stains in Plastic Storage Containers: Use a baking soda paste (baking soda and water) and rub into the stain. You can then rinse with vinegar (optional) and wash normally. Another method is to place container outside on a nice sunny day and the sun actually bleaches the stain out. To avoid stains in the first place, spray container with cooking spray before putting things in it that stain i.e. spaghetti sauce.

Stickers, Decals, and Glue: To remove them from furniture, glass, plastic, etc. saturate with vegetable oil and rub off.

Stuck-On Food in Pots, Pans, and Crockpots: Fill the pan with water and place a fabric softener sheet in the water. Allow the pan to soak overnight. The food will wipe right out!

Stovetops: To prevent grease and grime from sticking to your stove top, making it easy to clean, rub it down with car wax on occasion. (submitted by NIKEITA)

Tarnished Silverware: Line a cake pan with aluminum foil. Fill with water and add 1 Tbls. of baking soda per 2 cups of water. Heat to 150 degrees. Lay silverware in pan, touching aluminum foil. Watch the stains disappear!

Trash Bag Idea: Save money on trash bags by reusing plastic grocery bags. Use them in all your trash cans. To keep them from slipping down, affix a plastic, self-adhesive hook to both sides of the inside of the trash can. Hang the shopping bag from the hooks.

White Heat Marks and Water Rings on Wood Furniture: If the wood has a good finish (don’t try on bare wood), mix equal parts of baking soda and regular white, non-gel toothpaste. Lightly dampen corner of a clean, soft white cloth with water and dip into the paste. With circular motion gently buff the marks for a few minutes. Wipe area clean, and buff to a shine. Follow with furniture polish. (If rings remain after buffing five minutes or so, they may have penetrated the wood; you might have to refinish the piece). If that doesn’t work, dip a cloth in vegetable oil, then in cigarette ashes, then rub it over the mark. Another method is to rub real mayonnaise onto the stain, allow to sit overnight, then wipe with a dry towel.

Window Cleaner: This is the perfect window cleaner! In a gallon jug: 1/2 bottle of rubbing alcohol, 2 Tbls. Prell Shampoo, fill jug to the top with water. The rubbing alcohol prevents streaks and the shampoo cuts the dirt. I swear by it. It will last a long time and is very inexpensive.

About
Jul 22nd, 2009 by sovicki

AboutWelcome to Simply Foodie


Simply Foodie is a passionate foodie’s blog, consisting the following topics:

Cooking In: Collections of the best recipes gathered from cookbook writers, chefs, and the online community.

Dining Out: Restaurant recommendation and reviews.

Kitchen Tips & Tricks: Collections of cleaning, cooking tips and tricks to make every foodie’s life simpler, and easier.

Foodie News: New restaurant openings, closures, and deals.