Tips for preventing and treating fabric softener stains

You checked all the pockets, kept your whites, brights, and darks separated, but you still have blue spots on your clothing… how on earth did that happen?

The culprit could be your fabric softener.

Liquid fabric softener is oil based which can be an issue if it’s not added to your wash cycle at the right time or diluted properly. When the water supply is extremely cold, liquid softener can actually coagulate! Who knew? When it coagulates, it doesn’t dilute as well as it does in hot or warm water. This can also happen if you find old softener in the back of a cabinet that is a few years old.

Tips for using liquid fabric softener.

When used properly, liquid fabric softener can keep your clothes from fading, stretching and accumulating fuzz… and it smells so good! Just keep these tips in mind:

  • Be sure that the liquid softener is fresh (liquid fabric softener is good for about 1 year).
  • Read the bottle and use the recommended amount for your load size. There is such thing as too much of a good thing!
  • Add water when you put it into the dispenser to help dilute it.
  • Make sure you clean your dispenser with hot and soapy water once in a while to avoid build up or just fill the dispenser with water when you’re doing a load of laundry without fabric softener.

There is still hope for your stained laundry.

If you need a little help getting rid of those pesky spots, try rubbing them with a bar of soap and washing the item again.

Alternatives to liquid fabric softener.

Keep your options open with these alternatives.

  • Dryer sheets – proven to help reduce static, wrinkles, and soften clothes.
  • White vinegar – it has been found to soften clothes (and as a bonus, it does not leave a vinegar smell). Like liquid fabric softener, add one-half cup (for a large load) of white vinegar to the rinse cycle when the tub is full of water to avoid bleaching and a vinegar smell.
  • Wool dryer balls – throw them in the dryer with your load of clothes to help eliminate wrinkles and static.
  • Aluminum dryer balls – they help reduce static and soften your clothes as they dry. Make three-inch balls out of aluminum foil and toss them in!

Mystery solved!