Dryer sheets are like little squares of magic: Pop them in the dryer with a load of wet laundry, and your towels and sheets come out soft and smelling like heaven. But if you’re leaving the box of dryer sheets in the laundry room, you’re missing out—there are dozens of uses for miraculous things throughout your home.
So if you’re into quick hacks that make cleaning a little easier (and a whole lot faster), then you might want to grab an extra box of dryer sheets the next time you hit the grocery store. We’re about to change everything you knew about this laundry staple!
Uses for dryer sheets in the bathroom
Photo by RIVUSS
If you want faucets that shine like the day they were installed, Debra Johnson, a cleaning expert with Merry Maids, suggests running a moistened dryer sheet over the chrome. You can also run them over a shower door to clean off the soap scum and grime, she says, because dryer sheets have a detergent on them that makes them perfect for this type of cleaning.
Uses for dryer sheets in the kitchen
Photo by Michelle Workman Interiors
Ever stepped away from the stove to answer the door and come back to a tomato sauce that’s burnt tight to the bottom of your saucepan? It happens to even the best cooks out there, and it can take a lot of elbow grease to clean it off. Or you can place a dryer sheet on the baked-on filth, add a little water and allow the mixture to soak for a few hours. Once again, the detergents on the dryer sheet will help lift off the mess and give you shiny pots and pains.
Uses for dryer sheets in the living room and bedroom
Photo by Actual Size Projects
Ever dropped a dryer sheet out of the laundry basket only to find it covered in cat or dog hair? Well, the sheets can also attract the little fur and dust tumbleweeds that tend to pile up on your hardwood floors. Think of them as the cheaper version of those Swiffer pads you keep forgetting to pick up at the grocery store.
“The purpose of dryer sheets is to draw the static charge out of the clothing from the heat in the dryer,” Johnson says. “This same function will work for dusting.”
So grab a dryer sheet and get to work—run it over your baseboards, windowsills, door frames, ceiling fan blades, lampshades, and any other hard surface that might collect dust and pet hair. A dryer sheet also works wonders to cut down on static if you rub it over your frizzy hair or on an item of clothing that’s frizzing with static energy.
Uses for dryer sheets in the garage
Photo by Angela Flournoy
Like pots and pans with baked-on gunk, your paint-coated brushes will get a pick-me-up from soaking in some water with a dryer sheet for a few hours. And don’t forget to hit your bumper with a wet sheet to say goodbye to the bugs and hello to the shine.
Uses for dryer sheets in the backyard
Photo by Sudbury Design Group
Put down the pesticides, and grab the box of dryer sheets. Some consider this one a myth, but science says otherwise. Researchers at the University of Illinois and Kansas State University found that these little marvels can help repel certain insects that like to gather in the garden (or buzz around your head when you’re trying to enjoy the sunshine).
If chief menace to your garden is of the four-legged variety, you may still want to try a dryer sheet (or 10). Some people swear by hanging the small fabric sheets in their garden to repel deer.
Other dryer sheet uses
The fragrance boost of dryer sheets doesn’t have to be limited to your laundry. Johnson will slip them inside a stinky gym bag to help combat eau de sweat. Slicing a dryer sheet in half and sliding each half into a pair of shoes can help cut down on that funky foot smell. Have you found that your dresser drawers and the cabinet where you keep the kitchen garbage have a lingering odor? You guessed it—throw in a dryer sheet to help cut the funk.
Want to amp up the power of the fragrance boost? A dryer sheet hung from the front of a box fan will add a fresh scent to an entire room in no time.
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