Have you tried wool dryer balls in your laundry yet? They are affordable, eco-friendly and eliminate the need for fabric softeners and dryer sheets. I have been using them for several years and I have to say, they do a great job! In this post, I hope to answer your top dryer ball questions, so you never have to ask the question “what’s a dryer ball” again!
What are Wool Dryer Balls?
Wool dryer balls are exactly what you would expect, balls made from 100% wool yarn. Once the balls have been wrapped into a ball shape, they are “felted” with the high heat of the dryer, so their fibers cling to each other and no longer unravel.
How Do Dryer Balls Work? What Do They Do?
Dryer balls are used to completely replace fabric softeners and dryer sheets and they are really easy to use. You simply throw them into your dryer with your washed clothes and they do their thing — bouncing around in the dryer to separate your clothes. The movement allows air to move between the clothes or towels, so they dry faster, eliminate static cling, and reduce wrinkles.
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Why Should I Use Dryer Balls Instead of Fabric Softener or Dryer Sheets?
Unlike fabric softeners and dryer sheets, dryer balls have no chemicals or fragrances to pollute the air or water. Because they are made with 100% wool fiber, they won’t cause the host of allergic reactions like rashes and coughing that some people experience from laundry detergents, fabric softeners, and dryer sheets. (I know first hand, heavy, lingering chemical scents make me cough uncontrollably!) They are affordable, last for years, and compostable at the end of their usefulness.
Are Dryer Balls Scented? What Do They Smell Like?
Dryer balls are unscented and smell scent-neutral, like nothing. Because I am so scent sensitive, I prefer them this way, but the rest of my family likes their clothes to smell “fresh” and prefer to add dryer ball oils for their clothing.
If I like Scented Clothing, Can I Add Scent to Dryer Balls?
There are special dryer ball sprays like these from Poofy Organics, but you can also use any essential oil scent you prefer. Poofy’s Dynamite Day is my favorite with a blend of organic essential oils of mandarin, orange, tangerine, grapefruit & petitgrain. It smells incredible and doesn’t make me cough. It’s also affordable at only $10 for 10mL’s of oil per bottle. Depending on how scented you prefer your clothing, one bottle can last a long time.
How Many Dryer Balls Do I Need?
The number of dryer balls depends on the size of your wash load, but I generally use 5-6 for a large load, including towels. Any less than 4 and I start experiencing static cling.
How Long Do Dryer Balls Last?
I have read a lot of different accounts on how long dryer balls last, but I have had my original set of 6 balls for almost two years and they still work great. Other than being a less round and a little discolored (I assume from the essential oils and clothing dyes), they look like they have at least another two years in them.
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How Many Dryer Balls Should I Buy?
Dyer balls are mostly available in 3 and 6 ball packages. I originally ordered 6, but just ordered 6 more to keep as back-ups. (Since my family often does their own laundry, the balls sometimes get mixed up in their baskets and not returned for a few days.)
Can I Make My Own Dryer Balls?
Yes, you can make your own dryer balls. There are literally pages of tutorials online if you’d like to make your own. It looks easy enough and uses simple materials, but I prefer to purchase them and start using them right away. (Most tutorials expect you to felt them in nylon stockings and I also want to avoid buying, using and throwing out nylons.)
Which Brand of Dryer Balls Do I Use?
I prefer 100% organic or natural wool dryer balls like Woolzies Brand which are handmade from New Zeland wool. They claim to be hypoallergenic and even safe for people with wool allergies.
If you haven’t tried dryer balls yet, I highly recommend them. You can save money by eliminating the need to buy fabric softeners and dryer sheets and avoid introducing chemicals and fragrances into the water supply and air. Plus, they last for years and can be composted when they’ve lost their usefulness.
Do you any questions about dryer balls I’ve missed? Drop me a note in the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer you right away. Happy drying!