The smell of fresh laundry isn’t just for laundry — dryer sheets are aromatic little papers that are actually good for much more than de-wrinkling and de-static-ing your clothes after a wash. Their structure makes them useful in some unexpected ways, from repelling bugs to renewing pots and pans, so here are 17 ways to use dryer sheets that might change a few of your household chores forever.
Put them in your suitcase
To avoid your clothes smelling like luggage, place a few dryer sheets in your suitcase while you pack. They’ll help mitigate bad smells and it’ll be a lot more pleasant when you open your bags after a long flight.
Keep your socks fresh
In between washes, socks can get pretty pungent. Keep them fresher for longer by placing a few dryer sheets in your sock drawer. It works for closets, too: When my own clothes started to smell like the back of my closet no matter how often I did laundry, I put a box of lavender scented dryer sheets in there. Not only did the dryer sheets get rid of the musty smell, but they also spread some of the good stuff into the whole bedroom.
Clean soap scum off shower doors
Cleaning soap scum off of bathroom walls often requires a good amount of scrubbing, but the scratchy texture of dryer sheets can help take away some of the effort. Just put a few drops of water on a used dryer sheet to wipe the soap scum away.
Solve a smelly rubbish bin
Garbage bins have a tendency to stink, and although we should clean them regularly, we often don’t. If you won’t clean your garbage bin every time you take out the trash (and let’s be honest, you won’t), put a dryer sheet in the bottom of the bin to stave off the stench until you actually get around to cleaning it.
Keep your sewing thread from tangling
Hand sewing clothes is hard enough when you are not a professional, but it can be even more frustrating when the thread gets tangled along the way. Save yourself some annoyance by putting the needle and thread through a dryer sheet before you begin. The dryer sheet will reduce the static cling, keeping the thread from tangling while you sew.
Keep your car from stinking
Car freshener scents can smell overwhelming and overly artificial — enough that many people only open their packages halfway. Instead of using the same old pine tree-shaped air freshener, hide dryer sheets in your car. The smell will be less abrasive than your average car freshener, and they’ll get the job done just as well.
Dust your skirting boards
Static attracts dust to skirting boards, so dryer sheets are a secret weapon for keeping them dust-free. Wiping your skirting boards with dryer sheets after cleaning will help save you cleaning time in the future, as they minimise the static and help keep your baseboards clear of hair and dust for longer.
Clean out dusty computer fans
You can also clean your computer case fan with the magic of dryer sheets. You don’t need a fancy microfiber cloth — just take a used dryer sheet that you’d be throwing away anyway and wipe down your computer fan for better airflow. It works wonders.
Clear mineral stains and deposits from faucets
Dryer sheets can also remove mineral deposits and water stains on your bathroom and kitchen sink. Just rub a dryer sheet over your taps and shower heads, and it will clean and polish them like new. You don’t even need a fresh dryer sheet — a used one from your last load of laundry will work just fine.
Clean bugs off your car
If you’ve ever looked at the grill of your car, you probably noticed an insect graveyard. Remarkably, dryer sheets can clean off dead bugs from the car hood of your car with little effort — just run the dryer sheet over a wet car to get rid of those carcasses. It’ll take off the bugs easier than you think.
Repel rodents and bugs
Two common ingredients in dryer sheets, beta-citronellol (found in citronella candles) and linalool (found in lavender known to repel bugs), can repel both bugs and rodents while the dryer sheet does its regular job of making an area smell better. Hide dryer sheets in corners and small crevices to add another small layer of protection to help keep mice and bugs out of your home.
Hide inside a toilet paper roll
Your poops stink and your air freshener could use the support. Hide a dryer sheet in the toilet paper tube roll so that every time you spin it, it’ll wave that dryer-fresh aroma around your toilet like a built-in air freshener.
Keep your shoes from stinking
If dryer sheets can help out your smelly socks, your shoes might benefit from them even more. After all, it’s harder to your clean shoes as regularly, so they tend to get funky pretty fast. The solution is obvious, though: put dryer sheets in your shoes at the end of the day.
Clean toilet rings
You can use cleaning gloves and get down and dirty in your toilet, using the dryer sheet to scrub it clean — or, even better, use both your toilet brush and a dryer sheet combined. Just throw the dryer sheet into the toilet and use the brush cleaner to drag it around. Whatever technique you use, a dryer sheet will leave your bowl sparkling better than a sponge.
Deep clean dirty pots
Use dryer sheets to clean burnt pots by filling it with enough water to cover the burnt parts and leaving a dryer sheet inside to soak. Let the dryer sheet stand in the pan overnight; then, in the morning, the gunk should slide off with minimal scrubbing.
Clean pet hair
If you run out of pet rollers, grab a couple of dryer sheets, because they work almost as well. The dryer sheet fabric should collect the dust and pet hair off of your floor, couch, and other furniture.