The definite guide to the question, “How often should you do laundry?”
What is there to say about laundry?
You never finish it. There is always more washing to be done.
But, do you really need to launder everything after just one wear? And what about the sheets and towels?
Here’s the definitive answer to all your laundry questions.
How Often Should You Do Laundry For One Person?
If you are doing laundry just for yourself, you can plan on doing at least 3 loads of wash a week. These loads can be broken down into the following:
- colors and darks (washed on cold)
- whites and lights (washed on warm/hot)
- towels, sheets, kitchen towels (washed on warm/hot)
After one wear, you need to wash:
- undergarments and socks
- workout clothing
- anything that was soiled or stained
So after you wear any of the above-mentioned garments, toss them right into the hamper.
You also need a fresh kitchen towel daily – so toss your used one into the dirty washing pile every night too.
After two wears, you need to wash:
- blouses or worktops unless you excessively sweat, or it’s stained or wrinkled
- dress pants or slacks unless you excessively sweat, or it’s stained or wrinkled
Anything you can wear again, hang up right away. Otherwise, into the laundry basket it goes.
After three wears, you need to wash:
- denim unless they get stained, excessively soiled, or stretched out
After four to six wears, you need to wash:
- sweaters as long as a t-shirt or cami was worn underneath
Once a week you need to wash:
If you follow these recommendations, you’ll have about three loads to do in a week.
Personally, I space these out so I’m only washing, drying, and putting away one pile of clothes at a time.
Washing and drying doesn’t take much hands-on time. But putting your clothing away? That’s where people get stuck.
As soon as you pull your clean clothes out of the dryer, put them away.
Don’t drag them to the couch to fold. Don’t pile them on the dining room table until “later”.
It only takes 5 minutes to put a load of laundry away.
Don’t believe me? Set a timer for 5 minutes and try to get all your laundry put away. I bet you can do it!
How Often Should You Do Laundry for a Family?
Your family size will dictate how many loads of laundry you do per week.
The good news is most loads can be combined.
For example, as stated above, sheets and towels need to be done once a week.
Typically, you can get two sets of sheets in one load. And all the towels can go in another load.
In our family of four, we have three beds. I do one load with two sets of sheets, and another load with one set of sheets and all the towels.
That means I have two loads of linens I can plan on doing every week.
Furthermore, each person in my family needs one load of colors done once a week.
For a family of four, colors make four loads of laundry.
Our final load of laundry is everyone’s whites together.
In our household of four people, we do one load of wash every day, seven days a week.
Now That You Know How Often You Should Do Laundry, Create a Laundry Routine
I’ve finally figured out how to get my family’s laundry done from wash to put away with as little pain as possible.
It has completely revolutionized my daily routine!
Here is my secret:
I do one load of laundry every day, and I get that load of laundry in BEFORE I have my morning coffee.
You read that correctly. I wash one hamper of dirty clothes every day.
Did you know, people who do wash a little at a time are happier? You can read about it here.
To facilitate this method, everyone in my family has their own laundry basket.
In the morning, BEFORE my cup of coffee, I grab a full hamper out of one of the rooms and start the wash cycle.
It may be the afternoon before I can get it into the dryer and then put away, but at least I have it started.
Because I grabbed the clothes that belong to one person ONLY, all those clothes go right back into that room
No more sorting, folding, and carrying to the right room.
That’s how you end up with laundry in a pile on the dining room table!
I found it is far more efficient to fold and put away clothes if they all belong in one space.
Take the clothes out of one room, wash them, return them to that room, and put them away right away.
Give this laundry method a try and see if it doesn’t help to simplify your life too.
If you struggle with getting – and keeping – your house clean, enroll in my 5 Minute Housekeeping Course.