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Say Goodbye to Static Cling


Pop! Zing! Zap! The cooler weather has brought with it my old nemesis–Mr. Static. Mr. Static always shows up in homes uninvited, and makes itself quite a nuisance in the laundry room. But before you reach for your fabric softener and dryer sheets, let’s go over some naturally frugal ways you can send Mr. Static packing!

This was one area where I was VERY skeptical. I was very fond of my dryer sheets, and wasn’t convinced I’d ever give them up. I’ve played guinea pig and tried out several natural static remedies. Some have worked, some notsomuch. (Ow.)  Check out these simple ideas that worked in my tests:

  • use vinegar in the wash. Using a 1/4 cup of white vinegar in the place of liquid fabric softener has not only left my clothes softer, but it greatly reduced the static in the dryer as well. Even more, I’ve found that I don’t have nearly as many static issues throughout the day when my clothes were washed with vinegar. I was worried there’d be eau de vinegar lingering on my clothes, but surprisingly there isn’t. They just smell clean.
  • use a ball of aluminum foil in the dryer. I took a large section of aluminum foil and wadded it up, threw it in with a bunch of fleece blankets I was washing. It worked–but not fully. There was a whole lot less static than when I started, but as soon as I pulled them out and they were rubbing against each other in the basket, the static returned. Nothing bad, but it was there. Benefit: reports say that using 2-3 balls make the clothes dry faster, and they work better than the single ball. I did notice my rough aluminum ball came out nice and smooth after the dryer. It was kinda pretty.
  • use safety pins in the dryer. This one is my favorite! The recipe I’d read said to use two safety pins in an old sock to attract the static electricity. It works sort of like a lightning rod for static in the dryer–it attracts and defuses all the static electricity in the dryer, leaving your laundry static free. I could only find one safety pin, so I stuck a binder clip into the sock as well, and threw it into a second load of fleece blankets. I’d actually forgotten to do this at the beginning of the dryer cycle, so when I threw the sock in the fleece was already so staticky that it was popping as I opened the dryer door. I didn’t hold out much hope for this experiment, but OH MY. It worked! It actually was the best of all of the solutions. There wasn’t even a hint of static as I folded the blankets. We’ve used it since on the kids’ clothes, a load of flannel sheets, and some towels. Combined with the vinegar in the wash, this one actually worked best of them all!
It amazes me that after years of battling static with all kinds of consumer products–fabric softeners, dryer sheets, Static Guard, etc–that I had the tools to beat static in my home all along. Simply and naturally. I’ve been using the same sock with the same clips for a year now. Zero static. It really works!
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  1. Is it ok to PIn this?

  2. Absolutely! I’m a pinterest addict myself. 🙂

  3. Love this tip, will be trying it. Thank you. I also use vinegar it makes years instead of fabric softener, it helped my son get rid of rashes inside of his elbow he was getting from all the perfumed products I was using. I use natural laundry detergent also it makes years.

  4. What about cling on the clothes I’m wearing? I think I’m gonna go in there and pin safety pins to my tights and see if it helps with my skirt clinging. 🙂

  5. What a relief to know there can be some relief from static cling! I’ve had to use static guard, which I think smells bad, but it’s the only thing that has worked. So glad to hear there are natural alternatives — Thanks!

  6. I found your site through Premeditated Leftovers and love your ideas. I already use vinegar but I do not notice a huge difference in static while using it. So, since you love the safety pins for static I’m trying it with my next load. The static has been so bad recently I almost decided to go buy dryer sheets again, which I havent used in years! Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you Andrea! I’m still learning, but I’ve really enjoyed all these new tricks I’ve found. The added benefit is that not only are they green but they save us time and money as well!

  7. What a cool tip! Thank you =D

  8. I used both vinegar in the rinsing cycle and safety pins of a rag in the dryer. The blankets were frustratingly full of static! Makes me wanna use the toxix dryer commercial sheets again!

  9. None of these worked for me either. Still so much static….I could hear the popping as I opened the door. I guess dryer sheets are my only help 🙁