5 Unconventional Ways (and 1 Popular One) to Dry Clothes Without a Dryer

Budding plants, breezy days, sunnier temps—spring has sprung. However, spring also brings stormy days and chilly mornings. While it’s not always ideal to hang your clothes outside on a line, here are a few unconventional ways on how to dry your clothes with a dryer, no matter what the weather may bring.

Blow Away with a Hair Dryer

Maybe your dryer broke down. Maybe you’re in a hotel and need to quickly dry a shirt. Break out the hairdryer. First wring out your clothes so they’re not sopping wet. Then turn your clothes inside out. Set your hairdryer on hot or warm, hold it close and dry your clothing section by section.

Crank Up Your Oven (But Not Really)

This is probably the most shocking way to dry clothes. And it’s only good for little things like socks or underwear. Preheat your oven to 100 degrees. Lay your items flat on a baking sheet. Once your oven is preheated—turn it off. Then place the baking sheet inside. If your socks aren’t sopping, they’ll be dry in about an hour.

Pump a Salad Spinner

When you need to know how to dry your clothes fast without a dryer, a salad spinner is perfect. It works amazingly well for drying delicates. Gently squeeze out excess water so your items aren’t soaking wet and place them in the salad spinner basket. Pump a few times to quickly spin out excess moisture.

Make a Jellyroll

Towels aren’t just for drying off when you jump out of the shower. Lay a towel flat and then lay your clothing on top of the tissue paper. Then tightly roll ‘em up like a jellyroll. The towel and tissue paper will suck up the water.

If you have an iron and iron board handy, put a towel on top of your clothes and iron the towel. Flip the towel over and repeat so both sides are hotly ironed. The heat in the towel will transfer to your clothes and help absorb moisture. Just be careful not to directly iron your wet clothes, as that can spell disaster for your favorite piece.

Abandon Your Clothes Overnight

Yes, you’ve always heard not to leave wet clothes in the washer or they’ll start to stink. But that all depends on how long clothes are left. Martha Stewart says leaving wet clothes overnight is “perfectly alright.” Martha’s blog even says this can be a smart move if you’re air drying the next morning—because sitting overnight helps get rid of excess water.

Go Out on a Limb AKA Line

And we’ve saved the most popular, most conventional way to dry clothes without a dryer for last: line drying. Line drying can make your clothes smell like fresh spring air. And if you have a couple pieces of clothing you plan on keeping for a long time, hanging them on a line will help preserve their quality and structure. Tumbling around in a dryer drum can eventually break down their fibers. Line drying is simple, but there are a couple tips on how to air dry clothes to make it most effective. Like:

  • Before removing your clothes from the washer, run a high spin cycle. This whips out excess water, so when you pull your wet clothes out, they’re not dripping all over the floor, they won’t weigh down your line and they won’t take forever to dry.
  • Make sure clothes aren’t crumpled—unless wrinkles don’t bother you. Whether on a line, rack or rod, make sure clothes are straightened. (Bonus note: If you have a small space, consider a foldable space-saving dryer rack.)

If your clothes are hanging outside (or indoors near an open window on a breezy day) they should be dry in a few hours, depending on their materials. Heavy blue jeans may take a full day but a lightweight t-shirt could be dry in two hours.

As Fresh and Clean as Spring

With multiple ideas on how to dry clothes without a dryer—from using a salad spinner to rolling up in a towel—you can easily live the dryer-free life. Happy drying!