Green Living: An Anti-Static Solution

Categories: Green Tips

Believe it or not, this is actually a great way to get rid of static!
Taking Care of the Static

We’ve all experienced static-y clothes. The skirt that clings. The sweater with a sock stuck to it. The black shirt that seems to vacuum up dust and pet hair.

The easiest solution is to use dryer sheets, but do we really want to coat our clothes in more chemicals? Let’s look at some healthier, greener solutions to this problem.

Dry Less; Dry Separate; Hangers
If you’re doing large loads, don’t dry your natural fabrics and your synthetics together. Instead, dry these fabric types separately and you should be able to prevent a lot of static from forming.

Another option is to only lightly dry your clothes in the machine, because over-drying is a big cause of static. Take your clothes out of the machine early and let them air dry until you can put them away.

Finally, if you have a piece of static-y clothing, try running a metal coat hanger over it a few times. Sometimes this can be enough to remove any lingering electrons.

Baking Soda and Vinegar
All right, on to the more curious solution. Putting baking soda and vinegar into your wash may sound odd, but according to Jen at Is It Easy Being Green?, these two little kitchen products can be a big help.  Jen was having big problems with static cling in her clothes, so she decided to perform some laundry tests.

After three months of testing, she found that a 1/4 cup of baking soda in the wash cycle and reusable dryer sheets (more on those later) in the dryer made for a pretty effective anti-static solution. Jen also recommend that you use put a 1/4 cup of vinegar in during the rinse cycle once a month to tackle any residue in the machine.

Reusable Sheets
But what about those reusable dryer sheets I mentioned? These little guys don’t use harsh chemicals to remove static and are extremely reusable (they usually say one sheet will last for about 500 loads!) The reason we didn’t talk about this product for the entire article is that there are some mixed reviews online. Some people find they work fine, others don’t.

Jen, the intrepid tester, found them helpful, but still thought that baking soda was needed if you were going to really tackle the static. We’d recommend giving them a shot and seeing if they help out.

Hopefully this will take care of your static problem without having to resort to normal dryer sheets. Let us know how these solutions work our for you – and if you have any tips to share, post them in the comments!

Thanks to Cory Mackenzie, IsItEasyBeingGreen?, Lori Myers and wiseGEEK for the great tips.