This post was most recently updated on July 23rd, 2015
Okay, I know I said I was on a break with the blog, but I found something so exciting this past week that I just have to share.
Where I live, the red dirt is a nightmare for white clothes. It’s so hard to get out that I stopped even buying my family white clothing to wear years ago. No white t-shirts except for pajama shirts. No white socks. No white pants. And because this dusty menace seems to show up inside, too, I’ve even stopped buying white wash cloths, towels or curtains. It’s that bad. Really.
A couple weeks ago, one of my Facebook friends was bemoaning the fact that her children’s baseball pants are always white and after one game they look muddy and awful for the rest of the summer. One of her friends whose children had grown up playing summer ball here offered a suggestion on how to keep the pants – and everything else white – clean and bright for the entire season. I paid rapt attention to this conversation …
The solution was simple …
The friend of a friend used a bar of Fels Naptha laundry soap as a stain treater and pre-soak in the laundry. Just rub the moistened bar directly on the stain, she said, let it sit for a while & then wash as usual. She also shaved some of the soap into the wash basin and used the “pre wash” cycle if the entire garment was filthy.
I thought at the time that it was a great idea – I always have extra bars of Fels Naptha in my cleaning cabinet because it’s one of the ingredients I use to make my laundry detergent(s). I got the opportunity to try it out this past week when my 6 year old wore her favorite pink (going somewhere) t-shirt and shorts outfit outside to make “mud soup” and splattered it all over herfront. I rinsed the caked-on mud out of the clothes in cold water then rubbed the bar of soap all over the stained area. I threw it in the washer and set the pre wash cycle. After it had soaked for about 30 minutes, I fished the clothes out and the stains were completely gone. G.O.N.E. as in not a trace. It was a miracle.
Because the Fels Naptha had worked so well on the red dirt, I decided to try it on another stain bane … spaghetti sauce. My toddler dribbled it down the front of his white (what was I thinking?) Terrible Lizard shirt – a shirt that had been passed down from his older brother and was supposed to be destined for the “forever special” box. I moistened the bar of soap and rubbed it vigorously over the stain, then threw the shirt in the hamper until laundry day. I was shocked that the stain came out on the very first wash! Shocked, but thrilled.
The final test of this stain removing wonder was this morning, as I attempted to get my super-gross old white wash cloth (the one stained by my mineral makeup and the coconut oil I use to remove it) less dingey. I rubbed the damp wash cloth with the bar of soap and then let it soak in my laundry sink for about 20 minutes. When I lifted it out of the water, it was significantly whiter. I repeated the process and now my wash cloth looks almost completely white. I haven’t put it in the regular wash cycle yet, but I’m pretty optimistic about the final result.
I am so pleased with this very inexpensive and very effective stain remover that I just had to share it with y’all. I buy my Fels Naptha at the Wal Mart for just $.97 a bar – and I’ve been scrubbing the heck out of stained clothes for a week without even making a slight depression in the thing! It will last forever … well, several months, anyway. I just keep it on an old (yet charming & cute) plate on my laundry shelf, moisten the bar and rub away stains. Simple and cheap … my favorite things!
Now that I’ve imparted that little big of wisdom on y’all – I’m back to my time out. Unless I uncover another life-changing product or household tip.