Can You Wash Clothes Without Detergent?

Yes, you can wash clothes without detergent (using other alternatives instead). Nowadays, most people rely on their laundry detergent and washing machine to do the heavy lifting when it comes to laundry. However, we’ve all thrown a load in the washer only to pick up a suspiciously light detergent bottle. If you’re out of detergent, we have a laundry detergent alternative or two that can help!

Can You Wash Clothes Without Detergent

Can You Wash Clothes Without Detergent?

Most people see an empty bottle of laundry detergent and put off washing clothes until they can run to the store. Yet, you don’t strictly need clothes detergent from the store to get your clothes fresh and clean again. Keep reading and we’ll go over a few different options you have when washing clothes without detergent!

What You’ll Need to Wash Clothes Without Detergent:

  • Dirty clothes you want to wash
  • Washing machine
  • Baking soda
    • For this purpose, you’ll only need a cup of baking soda per load of clothing
  • A measuring cup that can hold at least one cup of baking soda
  • Dryer or place to hang your clothes

How to Wash Clothes Without Detergent:

Step 1: Load the Washing Machine

To start, you’re going to want to gather your dirty clothes and put them in the washing machine, just like you normally would if you were washing them with laundry detergent. When you use baking soda, you don’t have to worry about hand washing your clothing. The cycle and choice to use hot water or cold water depending on what’s best for what you’re washing.

Step 2: Add Your Baking Soda

Now that you have your clothes in the washing machine, this is where you’ll want to grab your baking soda in lieu of laundry detergent. Other than just getting your clothes clean, using baking soda is usually a safe choice for those with sensitive skin. Use a measuring cup and measure out a cup of baking soda for your load.

When you put it in your washing machine, you don’t have to use the soap dispenser. Instead, sprinkle it right on the clothes and it’ll mix directly with the water as soon as the machine starts to run.

Step 3: Run as Normal

Once you’ve added your baking soda, all you have to do is start your machine. Once again, the settings for the load are up to you. It’s best to take a look at the tags on your clothes to see the suggestions. Let the cycle run as it normally would.

Step 4: Dry Your Clothes

When the washing machine finishes up its work, the rest is a pretty familiar process. All you have to do is take your clothes out and hang them to dry or toss them in the washer. Again, this step is all about preference and caring for your clothes. Once they’re dry, you’ll have clothes that feel just like new.

How to Clean Your Clothes with Vinegar

Step 1: Add Vinegar to the Washer

This one is a little different because you’ll want to start by adding a cup of white vinegar to your empty washing drum. You don’t have to add it to the detergent dispenser but if you do add a splash here, it can add some extra fighting power for tough stains.

Step 2: Do Your Laundry as Normal

From here, just add your clothes to the drum and run them through a wash cycle like you would if you were using laundry detergent. After that, dry them as you please and you’ll have fresh clothes ready for you.

How to Clean Your Clothes with a Bar of Soap

Step 1: Prepare Your Sink or Tub

For this method, you’ll have to handwash your clothes. So, to get started, you’ll want to fill a sink or even your bathtub with enough hot water that you can completely submerge your clothing.

Step 2: Start Scrubbing

Now, you’ll want to start scrubbing the dirty areas of your clothing but don’t get out of hand. Going overboard will lead to a difficult residue. Once you’ve scrubbed the stains, put the clothes back in the water and swirl them around in the soapy water.

Step 3: Rinsing Them Off

Before drying off your clothes, you’ll want to rinse them again under cold running water. This will help remove the soap residue. To get rid of the rest, wring the clothes out before putting them in the dryer.

How to Make Homemade Laundry Detergent

Step 1: Create Your Laundry Detergent

You may already have the supplies in your home to make your own laundry detergent. Start off by boiling 8 cups of water and adding two cups of borax and baking soda each once it’s boiling.

Next, mix a cup of hydrogen peroxide with twice as much water to dilute it before you add it to the mixture. Then, add two cups of dish soap. Finally, you’ll want to add 50 drops of your favorite essential oil just to give it a pleasant scent. Let it cool and you can use it like you’d use any laundry powder.

How to Wash Clothes Without a Washer?

If you’re out of laundry detergent and can’t use your washer, that’s not a problem at all! Hand washing clothes isn’t as difficult as you might think. You can use our tutorial on how to clean your clothes with bar soap if you want to wash your clothes without a washer as well.

How Often Should You Wash Clothes?

It depends on the clothing that you’re washing! If you’re talking about jeans, you can get away with a few wears between washes. However, if you’re considering underclothing, socks, activewear, tights, or anything else tight-fitting, a single wear and wash is a good idea.

Can You Wash Your Clothes With Just Fabric Conditioner?

Fabric conditioner or fabric softener is great when you want your clothes to feel a little softer when you wear them. Yet, there’s nothing in these to clean the clothes, so you can’t use them as a replacement for your laundry detergent when you’re running low.

Can You Wash Your Clothes With Just Water?

While water is used in cleaning your clothes no matter what method you use, water alone isn’t enough to get clean. It’s the same reason you reach for soap when you wash your hands. Just getting your clothes wet and drying them won’t really get them clean.

Did you like our tutorial? Even if you’re out of laundry detergent, you still have plenty of options to get your clothes clean. If you like these tips, let us know in the comments below and share this article with your friends!

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