Thursday, May 17, 2012


Ask a Clean Person: Laundry School — Lint and Static and Ironing, Oh My!

Get out your notebooks, sharpen your pencils, hone your note-passing skills: Laundry School is in session! We're devoting the entire month of May to the subject of laundry. And what fun would Laundry School be if you couldn't backtalk the teacher, right? So! The Twitter hashtag for this is #LAUNDRYSCHOOL. If you follow me on Twitter (@joliekerr) you can holler at me when you do your laundry! Or lemme see those beautiful piles of folded clothes! Or ask questions! Or tweet at me in emergency situations! Or maybe you just really, really, really need to talk to me about how folding a fitted sheet sends you into fits of rage. This is me, being here for you. And because I try to be here for you in as many ways as possible, I've started a pinboard devoted entirely to laundry to serve as a reference source. Most importantly: got questions? Ask away!

I've got a fluff situation I cannot get under control.

I received a set of gloriously fluffy dark purple towels for Christmas and they leave a trail of fuzz everywhere. Every time I pull them off the shelf, it's like a purple lint bomb exploded in my bedroom. Is there any way I can get them to stay fluffy, stop shedding, and remain a vibrant color?

You're going to think I'm crazy. Which? Can someone start keeping track of how many As to your Qs I begin with, "you're going to think I'm crazy"??? I really gotta stop doing that. But seriously, this sounds nutty, even to me: you might need to vacuum your towels.

Before you do so, you'll want to clean off the brush attachment of your vacuum so that any debris that might be clinging to it doesn't get on your towels; I mean, we're gonna wash the towels afterward anyway, but still. Give 'em a good going over with the vacuum's brush attachment and then launder as usual. You can also do the same sort of thing with a lint roller — be prepared to use allllll the sheets — and/or a slicker brush.

Oh but sorry … I jumped right into that answer without giving you any sense of why this might be happening. And there are a couple of reasons! Many towels, including and (oddly) especially super high-quality ones, need between 6 and 10 washings before they're fully de-linted. In which case, you can skip the vacuuming and just wash them much more frequently at the beginning of their life than you normally would to see if that solves the problem. The other reason why they might be shedding is that you bought a faulty product; if the fibers weren't properly stitched in they will fall out like a cut-rate weave.

Other things that might work are (1) using white vinegar in the wash, because the acid will help neutralize those rogue fibers. By the way, I absolutely don't know that "neutralize" is the right term there, but you kind of get what I mean, right? Right! You all are my people, and you understand me completely. (2) Soaking the towels in a salt water solution. Same thing as with the vinegar — there's some chemical thing that salt does but honestly guys? I'm exhausted from vacuuming the towels and can't be bothered to research the science of it all.

Also whenever you get an item that doesn't act the way you want it to, you should feel absolutely free to call up the manufacturer to ask if there are any particular products or techniques that they recommend for a better result. You might find that the problem you're having is one that's common to the product, and that there's a solution or solutions they can suggest, or you might learn that you've got a lemon on your hands and that they're willing to send you a replacement. So! Pick up that phone (or, let's be honest, email customer service because eew gross who wants to talk on the phone).

Long-time reader, first-time question-asker. I was wondering if you had any suggestions for how to deal with static cling in clothing that can't go in the dryer and receive the waxy goodness of fabric softener. I have some sweaters and a couple of rayon dresses that are especially prone to clinginess, presumably because they are lay-flat-to-dry items. Is there a spray or some other product I can use on them?

There is indeed a spray you can use on them! There are also a whole bunch of other things you can do to cut down on static cling — including a number of options that I think will be helpful to know about in the event that static cling creeps up on you in the middle of the work day or some such and you don't have your full stash of products on hand.

But first let's back up to something you can do to prevent static cling in items you don't put in the dryer: use a ½-1 cup of white vinegar in your wash, which serves as a fabric softener and will also help to reduce static cling. Liquid fabric softener serves the same purpose, but I hate that garbage and don't even like talking about it, so.

With that out of the way, let's get into the various products and tricks that exist for waging war against static cling. First and foremost, there's Static Guard. It is a lovely product! You just spray it on the item that's clinging to you, and just like magic everything falls into its proper place. <3 it!

Hairspray — the narsty aerosol kind, ya know, like Aqua Net (which is actually seriously what I use on my hair because I secretly think I'm a Poison groupie) — also works to eliminate static electricity. You can spray it directly on your clothes, just make sure to keep the can a good distance away from the garment so you don't end up with a sticky coating and/or stains. You just want to mist it. You can also mist yourself with the hairspray. Either way. Similarly, body lotion — rubbed on yourself or very sparingly on clothes — will work. The direct application, garment-wise, is best reserved for use on socks and hosiery, since you probably aren't too psyched about the notion of smearing cream all over your clean sweater. If you dig on the notion of rubbing yourself with things, you can also rub the garments down with a dryer sheet.

And lastly, in a pinch you can fasten a safety pin in the seam of the clingy garment; the metal will counteract the electricity, leaving the fabric to lie flat.

I'm ironing! Hooray! But some of my shirts say cool iron/no iron — what the??? Honestly, they could look a little crisper, can I do anything? They also look a lot less wrinkled than when I hung them after drying them a few days ago … dunno, I just want to look pretty, pretty handsome.

It sounds like what you've got on your hands are no-iron shirts. Which are great in that they don't wrinkle in the same way that other dress shirts do, but they also don't come out of the wash perfectly pressed either. So if that's what you're going for — and truly, I applaud you for that goal — you're going to have to do a wee bit of post-laundering work.

In general, unless the shirt is made of some super high tech material, ironing will be just fine. If you're worried or just want to test things out, turn the shirt inside out before pressing — that way, if the fabric does react badly to the heat (usually it will get a bit shiny if it's truly not designed to tolerate heat) then you've found out without ruining the exterior of the shirt. You can also use a pressing cloth, which is placed over the item you're ironing to protect it from the direct heat of the iron. Would you like to know a little bit more about pressing cloths from a woman who says things like, "I use a press cloth every time the iron touches the fabric’s right side. I wouldn’t go out in the hot sun without sunscreen, and I wouldn’t put a hot iron on fabric’s face without a press cloth"?? SURE YOU WOULD!

But back to your iron: start with a low-heat setting to see how things go and then gradually ratchet the heat up if the shirt seems to be doing A-OK under the iron. Another thing that will help immensely with items that call for a cool iron is starch.

Oh man. I'd talk about my feelings for starch, but I'd just embarrass myself. I … love it more than Bleachie. Seriously.

You know that nice shirt I have with the pink and blue stripes?? It came out of the wash all ... weird. Like the collar and cuffs and supports for the buttons are stiffer than the rest of the shirt so they came out not wrinkly, exactly, but kind of, well, the supports for the buttons look like a long strip of bacon down the center of my chest when I put it on.

Do I just have to iron it every time, or did I do something wrong? It said to wash it in warm water, but I put it in with all the other cold stuff, because they were colors that I was trying to protect! I am dumb :-/

If this question reads as a touch familiar, it's because it's from Boyfriend of Clean Person. And you all know me well enough to know that the ensuing conversation sounded something like this:

Jolie Cleanperson: I'm howling at the notion of you with a giant strip of bacon running down your pelt. Related — now I am hungry.
BoCP: Joles.
Jolie Cleanperson: I'm going to hang bacon around your neck.
BoCP: Jolie.

Which is to say that he should be sainted for putting up with me.

Anyway! This is actually a really common thing that happens when you machine- or hand-wash dress shirts rather than sending them out, so it's worth letting folks know NOT TO PANIC. Sometimes they come out looking funny, especially if the collar, cuffs and/or placket has been treated to be stiffer than the fabric of the body of the shirt. The solution is indeed to iron — or steam — the shirt post-laundering. Simple.

Laundry season question: what should I do with my shirts? I have to dress hyper-conservative for work; my solution was to have a bunch of beautiful cotton shirts made for me in the far east. They are like fancy men's shirts — they have french cuffs, stiff collars and a blind front. The problem is that I have no idea how to take care of them, particularly when it comes to the ironing. So I send them out with my dry cleaning. What I would love to have from you is EITHER instructions on how to wash and iron and hang them OR a Clean Person's absolution that I can send them out and not be that hoity-toity lawyer who can't look after herself.

Wait first of all, I want to take a minute to comment on the awesomeness of your collection of custom-made shirts. I absolutely love it! For many, many years I've been a professional woman who's relied on the ease of a "uniform"  to make the process of getting dressed in the morning, while ensuring that I look fashionable and appropriate, as easy as possible. I just think it's great, and you know what? So does our President, who made a point of telling of telling the Barnard College class of 2012 that "you can be stylish and powerful too." Which? AHHHHHH. (Also: clean and powerful. You can be clean and powerful too!)

With that bit of gushing out of the way, I am officially ABSOLVING YOU. *dips fingers in the font of Holy Bleach, makes the sign of the Clorox* Send 'em out! There is absolutely nothing about sending fancy shirts out — especially ones with French cuffs and such, which require a tremendous amount of skill and patience to iron properly — that's "hoity toity" or suggests that you don't know how to take care of yourself. You're a lawyer, girl! Do you think a single one of your male counterparts worries himself with sending his shirts out? The answer is NO. So don't you do it too. /feminist cheerleading.

But! If you want to do your own shirts, here is a kind of hilariously bad — but honestly informative — YouTube Series on how to iron shirts for you to take a peek at.

Previously: Laundry School, Week 1; Laundry School, Week 2.

Jolie Kerr is not paid to endorse any of the products mentioned in this column, but she sure would be very happy to accept any free samples the manufacturers care to send her way! Are you curious to know if she's answered a question you have? Do check out the archives, listed by topic. More importantly: is anything you own dirty?

Image by Tribalium, via Shutterstock/coloring by The Hairpin

199 Comments / Post A Comment


Am I alone in never ironing anything? Like, ever? Because my sister and my mom could iron all the live-long day and seriously never get tired of it. Just one more reason why I suspect I am adopted. From royalty.


@falconet HOW DO YOU DO THIS!?!? I have to iron EVERYTHING or I'll look like a well-dressed hobo.

But I also feel like I'M the weird one because I iron. Nobody I know irons anything. How does that work!


@falconet I actually avoid ever buying button-down shirts solely because I don't want to deal with ironing them.

sudden but inevitable betrayal

@falconet I don't iron. I don't believe in it.


@falconet I don't! I just buy things that don't need ironing. I have one or two things that require it, and I wear them very rarely. It's just not necessary.

Tragically Ludicrous

@falconet I am not much of an ironer, I expect because I came from a family of non-ironers. (True story: in high school, I had a pianist friend who lived in a suburb somewhat far away from our high school. Once, he had a recital in the evening and wanted to iron his shirt. I live a lot closer to the school, so he asked if he could come over and iron his shirt. My mom had no idea how to either use the iron or where the ironing board was. My friend figured them both out, but it pretty much summarizes how we feel about ironing.)


@boyofdestiny I've just accepted my hobo look. Just hobo. Not well-dressed.


@everybody What about wrinkles!


@falconet I also do not believe in ironing. Down with the iron!!!


@boyofdestiny 1) I work from home so I only have to worry about looking really polished during client meetings that I have sometimes. 2) The clothes I have for that are purposefully hard to wrinkle. 3) Sometimes I am wrinkly and I cheerfully embrace that if the reward is never having to iron.


@boyofdestiny WRINKLES BE DAMNED! It's time for the Wrinkly Hobo Look - a whole new style! The morn has dawned for embracing wrinkles in everything: our clothes, our skin, our important papers - wrinkles for everybodyyyyyyyyyyyy!

RK Fire

@falconet: Get a clothes steamer! Just hang up what you need to remove wrinkles from, get the steamer started, and steam the wrinkles out!


@boyofdestiny Full disclosure, I am an unemployed stay-at-home mom, so. But even when I worked, I wore a lot of sweaters or "wrinkle-resistant" shirts. It helps if you're a librarian; people are accepting of a certain level of frumpiness. You are not weird, just diligent.


@OhMarie Tool of the oppressors!


@falconet I rarely iron anything. My mom loves to iron. She irons her sheets and her jeans, even.


@boyofdestiny I throw most of my stuff in the dryer to work out the wrinkles. If I iron, it's all my work shirts at the same time once a week (or two).


@RK Fire Yes! Steamers are the best. I have a shitty $20 Conair one I got at Target in college, but I'd like to get something better --- could you (or anyone else) recommend a nice one that's not too expensive?


@boyofdestiny here's my dirty secret: you can buy a little plastic spray bottle & spray wrinkly things down with water. give 'em a few solid shakes &/or smooth them on the bed, et voila! no more wrinkles.

yes, this is lazy & borderline unseemly, but I've done it for years, & it works on anything that isn't, like, CREASED with wrinkles. back when I used to go to the gym, this nice older lady once asked what "amazing product" I used every morning do smooth out my work clothes, & she looked SHOCKED when I told her it was water--I think she would've been less surprised to learn it was battery acid or something.

so obviously ironing is better, but if you're not Someone Who Irons, you can do that instead. if you spray stuff down before getting in the shower, it's usually dry (enough) by the time you're ready to get dressed. (& if you're dealing with a garment that waterspots you can either sparingly spray the inside or soak it completely with water the night before.)

there, now you know one of the many techniques I'm using to successfully impersonate a responsible adult. (for what it's worth, I do OWN an iron. & a steamer, which I use in the rare occasions when the water method fails me.)


@meganmaria This makes sense. I guess it's a combination of not having my own dryer, and taking short showers, and just having a lot of cotton shirts and pants that causes me to have to iron so much. But folks that claim to never iron anything ever? It's like a magical world!

Reginal T. Squirge

@RK Fire

Steamers are for quitters.

Reginal T. Squirge


Those folks probably look mad sloppy all the time, too.

Porn Peddler

@falconet Every time I iron anything, it is VERY GRUDGINGLY. I haaaaaaaaate ironing.

I briefly worked as a maid for a woman who was obsessed with ironing EVERYTHING. Here, iron my scrub pants! BITCH THEY ARE SCRUB. PANTS.


@boyofdestiny I know it's bizarre! Most of my male buddies say they never iron anything, but my dress shirts come out of the dryer looking like they just came off of someone who'd been hit by a truck. Am I doing something wrong here?

(Also it takes me foooor-eveeer to iron things, and they still end up with weird creases. I use starch. What gives?)


@stuffisthings Right? I iron so much, and I'm still bad at it. And yet I'd be even worse at committing to an elaborate regime of shortcuts to avoid ironing. When do we get our metallic jumpsuits?


@all Pater Pistol Packin' Mama spent the first half of his working life (happy retirement, Pater PPM!) in the USAF... Mater PPM said with a straight face all the time I knew her that she had a prenup that said she did not iron. Ever.

I have a lot of memories of my dad on the weekends ironing his USAF-blues for the work week, and fastening his name tag to the first one he was going to wear.

I bet the weeks where they were supposed to wear battle dress uniforms to work (in an office!) were a relief for all personnel.


@RK Fire Do steamers work on men's dress shirts, you think? I'd like to get one but I'm not sure it will give me the crisp look I desire.

Also, does anyone have any tips on how not to spill coffee or curry sauce on the cuffs of my freshly cleaned & pressed white shirts that I had planned to wear several times?


@PistolPackinMama I saw a Navy guy the other day wearing blue on blue camo. I was thinking, OK, so the only thing that would help you blend in with is THE OCEAN and if you were in the ocean it meant you FELL OFF A SHIP and you'd want people to see you, right? WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO BLEND IN WITH THE OCEAN???

Reginal T. Squirge

Oh, also, I gave up on starch years ago because it caused too many flakes and built up a nasty film over time. I just quit cold turkey and never looked back and I haven't missed it at all.


@stuffisthings Uh... I... Okay, so that confused me, so I went and looked it up, and Wikipedia says this about blue camo... you aren't hiding yourself, you are hiding YOUR DIRT AND PAINT!

"The overall blue color reflects the Navy's heritage and connection to seaborne operations.[6] The pixelated pattern is also used to hide wear and stains, something unavoidable with the utilities and working khakis used previously.[7] The colors were also chosen to match the most commonly used paint colors aboard ship, extending the lifetime of the uniform on long deployments where uniforms often come into contact with freshly painted surfaces. As of 2012, the uniform is authorized for wear outside of military installations.[8]"

Or sticking out in a civilian crowd?


@PistolPackinMama Well, leave it to the US military to have an even more bizarre and ridiculous explanation than I could've expected. (I at least thought they'd say something about sailors not standing out against the ship, as if anyone would be trying to attack individual sailors on a Navy vessel.)

RK Fire

@jaimie: I can't remember which kind we have but I'll take a look when I get home.

@stuffisthings: I don't think it will get you the super-crisp look, unfortunately.

@Reginal: You can't quit if you never started...


@RK Fire The mini steamer is the greatest invention known to man!


@falconet I bought an iron when I moved in January 2011. It is now May 2012, and that sucker has yet to emerge from its box. I don't know why I bought it, I just... I used to iron stuff occasionally? I guess? Whatever, I am terrible at ironing anyway, I am convinced that it is some sort of innate skill that I lack.


@sudden but inevitable betrayal Me neither! I just don't own any clothes that need ironing, ever. I'm a perpetual student though and I live in jeans and hoodies. The sad thing is I really like the smell of ironing. I once had a flatmate who had to iron shirts for work and I'd just lurk in the sitting room huffing the laundry smell.


@RK Fire Seriously. The steamer changed my life. I am not an ironer, I suck at it, but look reasonably put together because of the steamer.


@falconet I used to be in cadets, and had to iron my uniform, so I know how, and it's not that I'm opposed to ironing, but.... I just don't own enough clothes that need to be ironed, and I lost my iron a few moves ago, etc etc. I haven't actually ironed anything in at least 4 years.


@boyofdestiny Weird side bonus of wearing plus sizes: almost everything I own has some amount of spandex in it, which cuts way the hell down on wrinkliness. I also hang most of the wrinkle-prone things to dry anyway, so they don't get nearly as creased as they would in the dryer. And perfectly crisp things wrinkle in about two minutes on me anyway, so.


@nonvolleyball I do this! Except I do it while I'm drying my hair and just zap it with the blow dryer. Now that I think about it I guess only the front of me is wrinkle free...

mine de rien

@falconet I actually take this one step further: when shirt shopping, I pinch sleeves to see if it leaves a sharp crease. If it does, I'd have to iron it, so I just don't buy it. Problem solved! (I may own a lot of polyester. But nobody can see the label when it's on me, so.)


That is all!@l


Made-to-measure shirts! I want some. Did you actually go and get them made for you while you were in Asia, or has anyone used an online service they would recommend? I need manly shirts for an hourglass body, and I don't want to spend too much money.


@wallsdonotfall Yes, responding because I would like to know too, please.


@wallsdonotfall - When living in DC, I knew a friend of a friend of a friend who knew a guy and one day every six months I'd go to a shady airport hotel wait my turn, go into a room get measured by the guy, pick out my colors and styles, provide my address, pay and in 6 weeks all my shirts arrived like magic. I never got screwed and only one did I get a shirt I didn't order. If you see a colleague with nice shirts ask them where they got them, you may get the hook up.


@wallsdonotfall Me too. Also, what is a blind front? Is it shirt with built-in blinders? Does LW work with a bunch of distractingly lovely/deformed people? Is her boss really THAT HARDCORE?

Terrifying Wife-Avatar

@sudden but inevitable betrayal Yep, I am intrigued by made-to-measure shirts and would like to subscribe to their newsletter. Or something.


@sniffadee I thought it was when a shirt had that layer of fabric in front of the buttons, so you don't see them from the front? If so, I find it a little fussy and difficult to burst out of quickly.

dj pomegranate

@wallsdonotfall This is also relevant to my interests.


@themmases I don't understand why all shirts don't have snaps. HELLO BODICE RIPPING.


@themmases We are currently having a made-in-Asia custom shirt and suit motherfucking all out crisis right now two months before my wedding--everything came out completely wrong. So don't sink too much money into it--wish we hadn't!


@wallsdonotfall There was an article recently on Slate or someplace about custom shirt websites, focus on men's shirts but I think they do lady stuff too. Don't have time to google it right now though...


@jennifa wow that hookup sounds sketchy! But awesome. Awesomely sketch?

RK Fire

@wallsdonotfall: My husband has actually gotten two suits made from a Thai made-to-order company that he got connected to from a coworker. They have been generally reliable and they do good quality work! The suit he wore for our wedding was made with them. He needs made-to-order stuff since his measurements aren't great for ready-to-wear stuff--I'm going to humblebrag here and just say he has the proportions of a cartoon superhero.. except for a non-tiny waist. They do lady clothes too, but I haven't bothered getting anything from them, so I don't know about how well they do with that.


I don't think any lawyer since the dawn of time has ever washed their own fancy shirts, so you good.


@Megano! This lawyer washes her own fancy shirts. Or rather, her one fancy shirt. Lawyering isn't always so glamorous. Alas.


I'm going to whine about my laundry problem . . . I consider myself a laundry expert (amateur class, but, you know, like boxing) so I am really embarrassed. I use coconut oil at night and suddenly noticed that it had somehow gone rancid or whatever and produced a horrible smell in my long underwear that I was sleeping in with it on, plus the part of my sheets that touch my face, plus my other pajamas that I slept in with it on. It's a really gross smell, kind of sweet & dry. I washed everything with vinegar and it still smells, albeit less so, so I'm going to do bleach next. What if it never comes out????

I'm also so grossed out that I haven't used coconut oil since. I've been using it for months and this only happened last week which I don't get. It's ironic because coconut oil is SUCH a good smell. Should I get new coconut oil? It's only like six months old I think and there is still a TON of it left so I'm sad to throw it away.


@Ellie Maybe try throwing it in the freezer for a few days, then let it defrost and see if it still stinks? If so, throw it out. If not, try keeping it in the fridge.


@Ellie I use coconut oil on my hair and face sometimes too, and I keep a little container (you could maybe use an old lip balm tin or film canister?) of it in the bathroom for daily use and store the rest in the fridge. When I need more, I take it out until it's soft enough to scoop, and then put the jar back in the fridge.


@Ellie I can help with the part of your problem that is laundry-related.
If your clothes still stink, it's because there's still some of the stinky stuff in them. Put them in the washing machine with detergent and more vinegar (bleach won't help, it doesn't break down oil) and run it on the hottest setting the fabric will stand.
Higher-effort option: Handwash in hot water with dish soap, then rinse and launder as usual. Dish soap is great for grease stains, but you can’t use it in the washing machine because BUBBLES DISASTER.


Ughhhh I can't imagine how much vinegar this will eventually require! I used a pretty decent amount before!

The coconut oil in and of itself DOESN'T smell or seem rancid or anything . . . just after getting on clothing. But I will keep it in the fridge in future. Too bad because the jar is so big that I use it as a bedside table, it's the perfect size to keep a mug of tea on.

Thanks guys!


@Ellie I'm thinking that since coconut oil is a grease you need to use something to tackle that and hopefully if you get all the coconut oil out the smell will go with it. This clean person column about grease stains comes to mind.


@Ellie Are you sure it was the coconut oil and not conditioner or shampoo or something? Because I've had conditioner sour in my hair overnight, and I woke up with a head that smelled like cat pee.


Okay, this has absolutely no relevance to today's column, but I am completely traumatised by an unclean thing that has happened to me and I need to share my horror. About two weeks ago, unbeknownst to me and my housemate, a bird contrived to die in our blocked-up fireplace, and over the last couple of days has expelled as a parting gift HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF FLIES OH MY GOD. They're coming out of an air vent we can't reach to get the dead thing out of, and they just keep coming, no matter how many we chase out, and every morning for the past three days it's the same and I have to open the window to let two dozen big black flies out as the very first thing I do when I wake up and it's soul-destroying. We've got a pest control guy coming tomorrow (NOT SOON ENOUGH) after which I plan to go all Lady Macbeth on every surface that might have regurgitated dead pigeon on it. Um. Has this happened to anyone else and if so, how did you resist the urge to set fire to your house and all your possessions just to feel clean again? What can I doooo?


@glitterary Can you cover the airvent with plastic and tape--you know, like they told us to do for anthrax attacks!--'til the pest guy comes or will that kill everyone?


@laurel We tried covering it with paper because we don't want to harm the wallpaper/paint and then get charged for it when we leave, but they somehow just crawled out anyway. I also feel kind of evil blocking it up so the poor pest control guy has to face a tsunami of blocked-up flies when he goes to sort it out--we've already ducked out of being in the house when he comes.

sudden but inevitable betrayal

@glitterary Oh my god. You are so brave.


@glitterary Ohmygodohmygodohmygod (screaming)


@sudden but inevitable betrayal Actually I'm staying late at work so I don't have to go home and deal with it, bravely allowing my housemate to be the one who has to open the window for this afternoon's worth of flies. (I did it this morning. Her turn!)


@glitterary I hate flies so, so much. I went to a lecture last year by a researcher who was deliberately giving flies cancer and diabetes (different groups of flies, alas) and it made my day.

You are so brave. I'd be sleeping at my parents'.


@glitterary Oddly enough, I've had a similar sort of problem with flies in my apt. I know this sounds totally crazy, but at some point each summer (like usually when it gets really hot in late July/August) flies start working their way into our apt through the cracks in the shitty old windows. I swear they're not hatching out in the apt anywhere, it's through the windows. We had HUNDREDS of flies last year. We live on the first floor and there are these hedges out front just a couple feet below the windows, and I think they hatch out somewhere down there because there are always flies buzzing around it, but no clue why they decide to come inside. Anyways, the only thing I could think to do was the duct tape all of the edges of the leaky windows and that seemed to help, but OH MY GOD if anyone has a better solution I would love to hear it.


@glitterary This exact thing totally happened at my boyfriend's old house! It was just awful, and they were disgusting boys, and did nothing about it. Ugh.


@themmases My parents live abroad, but there's an Unsuitable Man whose bed is looking more and more attractive by the minute. Trying to resist.

@jaimie Ohhh that sucks, especially seeing as it happens when you'd be wanting the windows open! I don't know if there's anything you can do to the ground outside, maybe? Spray the bushes with some kind of insecticide maybe? Or you could put a fly trap somewhere away from the window, to lure them elsewhere and then kill the buggers?


@glitterary: Flies!!! We had a fruit-fly swarm in our house. I am assuming you have black flies, though. No matter!

First things first, get flypaper at the hardware store and tack those things up all over the place.

Then, get every compostable food item out of range of the flies so they don't have the opportunity to lay eggs and come back with the second wave of flies.

Also, if you get really frustrated, Ask The Bugman!!!


@themmases How can you give a fly diabetes? It doesn't have a pancreas.


@gobblegirl Basically, by breeding flies that are deficient in one or more DILPs (Drosophila Insulin-Like Peptides) whose function is believed to be analogous to that of insulin in humans.

These authors are not the ones whose lecture I saw, but I thought their description was one of the easier ones to understand if you don't do research on flies or diabetes (which I don't).


@jaimie Is the gardener fertilizing with cow manure? Was my first thought. Or maybe there's something dead under the hedge? Maybe an animal drags goodies stolen from garbage cans under the hedge to nom at its leisure. Have baby birds fallen from an overhead nest and perished in the branches of the hedge?
I feel the source of your fly problem is either corpses or crap. goodtimes!


It's a sad day in laundryville. My handsome and charming Black and Decker classic iron (I've had it since I was a child!) is dying.

If you were going to buy a new iron, what kind of iron would you buy? Style? brand?


@laurel Commenting because I need a new iron too!


@laurel @phlox If you ask my mom, you need to spend $100 on a Rowenta iron. Apparently, she's had two in my entire life.

But if you ask me, go to Target and/or Amazon and spend about $25-50 and get something with all the features and a retractable cord. My linen pants seem just as pressed when I iron them with my $25 iron as when I visit her and use the $100 one.


@laurel - Whatever you do, don't buy an iron that has any "Safety Features". They are bullshit. When you try to use the iron to make grilled cheese, they just keep making loud beeps and shutting off. I don't want to burn down my house by accident or anything, but not being able to make a grilled cheese w/ my iron is a little too high a price to pay.


@laurel Ohhhhh, I love my stupid cheap Sunbeam iron that has the forced steam feature and I almost never drag out the ironing board, I just hang things on the type of hanger that has the swivel hook, over the shower door, and WHOOOOOSH the wrinkles out! Or, I even hold the hanger up in my left hand and more caaaaarefully do the WHOOSH thing so that I'm not blanching my own paw.


@leon.saintjean Sam? Is that you, Sam? How's Joon doing?


@MoonBat This is so mind-blowingly genius. I'm almost a little upset that I didn't come up with it myself. Resisting the urge to run home and whoosh everything I own!


@crookedlegs If only you were as lazy as me!


@all: retractable cord, serious steam, grilled cheese setting, check. These are all good points, thanks. I really do want one that one can use as a whooshy steamer and a pressing iron.


@laurel I have that exact iron, & I'm certain I purchased it after your childhood! If you love it (& aren't in the mood for something new), I bet a diligent round of googling could find you a #2.


@laurel oooh, signing on because my iron is leaking all over everything instead of steaming.


@cat_ballou Oh yeah, they're out there and super cheap, but I'd love to hear from The 'Piniverse if there are very special irons out there I don't know about.

Honestly though, it's such a robust little tank that I'm considering taking it apart and seeing if I can fix it. It seems like it's maybe the thermostat? It heats up fine but then cools off almost immediately.

/Have soldering iron, willing to mess with broken appliances.


@laurel Ohhhhh I recently got the expensive and elaborate DeLonghi Stiromeglio PRO 300 iron. It's a two-parter with a tank for the water and a deluxe cushy cork handle. I LOVE IT! You can use it as a steamer or an iron. I do a lot of sewing and quilting, and this iron is the best. I got it off Amazon for my birthday present (to myself from myself).


@laurel I have a fairly new Black & Decker that works well. It's got lots of settings and good steam. No retractable cord though.

On a sort of related topic, something green got stuck on it recently and now all our ironables get little green lint pieces. Any ideas how to clean that crap off?


@Bittersweet I just sent A Clean Person a request for iron face cleaning advice.


@Bittersweet My mother swore by table salt on a brown paper bag. You scuff the turned-on iron around in it and keep testing on some clean rags till all of the offending substance has moved from the iron to the salt.


@laurel If you check Amazon you will find the inevitable people who couldn't make it work, but I've had a T-Fal Ultraglide Easycord Iron for two years and I like it. I disagree with those who say that safety features are overrated as I somehow did not burn my house down after leaving my old iron (some crappy $10 model with no auto shut-off) on while I worked in England for six weeks.


@megsisbestest I'm imagining the visceral response you must have had when you returned, six weeks later, to find the iron still hot. Did your flesh crawl slightly? Feel light-headed? Hear ringing in your ears? Feel a shudder begin deep in your guts that ran all the way out to your fingers and toes?


@laurel Given that those are the exact things I did when I read @megisbestest's comment...I....ughhghhh. Too terrified to think. Irons are the scariest appliances (followed closely by toaster ovens, dryers, and anything with a pilot light).

Plant Fire

@laurel You can still buy that very same iron you've had since you were a child! I bought that iron a year or two ago at Target and it is lovely and wonderful.


@laurel I second the Rowenta recommendation. I have the Rowenta Focus, I got it about 2 years ago for Christmas - what can I say, I like a good iron. I needed a good iron for sewing and the Sunbeam I had wasn't cutting it. The 1 complaint I have about the Rowenta Focus is that if you fill it too full, it leaks, but duh. It is an awesome iron, runs about 80 bucks, I see no need to go to a higher than that particular Rowenta, they go up to $150 or so for more power/steam whatever. They are made in germany and last for a bazillion years.


@Bittersweet Buy Faultless Hot Iron Cleaner. It's a little tube of creme that you spread on your hot iron, then iron off on a rag. It works really well.

Genghis Khat

if the fibers weren't properly stitched in they will fall out like a cut-rate weave.

Yesssss this is why this is the greatest cleaning column.

sudden but inevitable betrayal

The safety pin anti-static trick is genius! I wonder if a paper clip would work?







i'm so impressed with the two of you


@melis When I heard the words "Boyfriend of Clean Person" my automatic reaction was the "OOOOOOOOOOOHH!!" sound track that was always played when people kissed on 80's TV shows.


@melis Agreed.


@Matt (Although to be completely and utterly fair, hers is lower than mine and the only reason I have such a low one in the first place is because I know her, so. Glory be to the Clean Person, as ever!)


@Matt Well. Not here, obviously. Here it is I who has the upper hand, Mr. 915. NOW IRON THIS SHIRT FOR ME. Your backchannel chatter can't save you on the Hairpin.


@melis I guess 841 is a pretty low number...




I think SOM just posted their GED scores.


@melis Commenting so I can see my commenter #. I have no idea what it is!


I think this is a good spot to say that I'm so, so appreciative that Hairpin doesn't display our commenter numbers every single time we comment. I hate it on the Awl.


@SuperGogo Well of course you do, you're in the 3000s.


@melis Ah yes, the Awl post to snark on Gawker's stars when their own commenting system is about as likely to foster open discussion or welcome newcomers as a meeting of the Skull and Bones--that was too cute.


@SuperGogo Say what you will about the Awl, but at least it doesn't send starless commenters to Nick Denton's ice-mining work camps.

Lila Fowler

TELL ME ABOUT YOUR WORK UNIFORMS. I want to revamp my work wardrobe, but just thinking about it makes me dry heave.

Mine is: Straight leg black or grey pants, cardigan, blazer, flats, whatever shirt on my floor looks cleanest. eep.


@Lila Fowler Cheap-ass t-shirt or tank from Old Navy or Target, topped with an expensive cardigan from Talbots or Lands End, ankle-length pants (because I am short), wacky flats, long necklace. This is seriously my work wardrobe at least four days a week.

sarah girl

@Clare WACKY FLATS, we are totally sisters. I am kind of Known around my department for my crazy glittery flats.


@Lila Fowler It appears I have a fashion twin. (Although some days I switch it up so that instead of straight leg pants I wear a skirt, and occasionally a dress gets thrown into the mix, too.)

I also wear a lot of stripey socks.


@Lila Fowler Me too. Cardigans are the best! You never have to iron them (or do you? I don't). Every day I choose a different combination of (usually obnoxiously bright) solid colors and go about my business.

Lately I've started adding a necklace from time to time, oooooh.


@Lila Fowler My work uniform is this dress:

I have one in black, one in purple, and one in dark blue and black geometric print. (There's also a red, but red makes me look like a sweaty drunk. YMMV.)

Seriously, I wear each of those dresses once a week, with various colored camisoles under, earrings, and high-heeled maryjanes. As comfortable as pajamas, and no ironing.

Lila Fowler

@lalaura ooooh that's cute. Too much cleave for my place of work, but I like the idea


@Lila Fowler Straight leg jeans, flats (sometimes Toms), vintage cotton t-shirt from J. Crew, cardigan. I work in IT, no one cares what I look like as long as I fix their computer.


@Clare TWINSIES! My office is super casual, so I wear ankle-length jeans (cute for shorties and now available in a rainbow of fun colors), an Old Navy materninty (LOL) tank as an undershirt (maternity ones are longer and good for long-torsos), a flowy Old Navy tank or tee on top, a cardigan (J. Crews are my fave) a long necklace (sale department of J. Crew) and flats or flat sandals. EVERY DAY! NO VARIATIONS! Once I wore a skirt and I went home and changed at lunch.


@Stickynee I wear just about anything I want, because I am an English teacher and I'm trying to cultivate that "I need freedom to express my creativity!" thing.

But in a pinch: Cute drapey top, bright colored cardigan, gray bootcut slacks. HUGE earrings. Done.


@Lila Fowler Literally this exact thing--black or gray pants, flats, cardigan or this one thing I have that is like a jacket-cardigan, and shirt. None of my shirts are button-down, either, I have only like shells and fancy t shirts.


@Lila Fowler Oooh speaking of which, does anyone have favorite straight leg pants for offices where the cardigans and flats uniform is acceptable? I can wear stuff with a pretty narrow leg as long as it's not jeans or outrageously tight. I have a few pairs of cotton twill pants that fit the bill, but they all stretch out within a wear or two and need to be washed and dried back into shape. Clearly I'm being too cheap, right? Or there is a different fabric to look for other than this ubiquitous one?


@themmases Dress, pretty, fun shoes, minimal makeup, hair up because holy lord do they overheat our buildings or what? Trailing bobby pins everywhere I go, as well as papers. Dark red fossil shoulder bag/not briefcase.


That How to Iron a Shirt Youtube series! "Spray the shirt down with water, roll it into a ball, put it in a plastic bag and put it in the refrigerator overnight." AS IF, MOTHAFUCKA I'll just stay nude, thanks


Im a laundry dunce so does anyone have any tips on how to get clothes really really nice smelling? My clothes just come out smelling like nothing which I guess I dont mind but Id like it if I walked past people and they sort of went 'gosh! what meadow has she been rolling around in?'. You know, the way thats implied in all the adverts.

If the answer is just more fabric softener then Im embarrassed.


@teaandcakeordeath I always feel like my clothes smell more strongly like my awesome detergent if I also remember to use a dryer sheet. This leads me to do crazy things like only buy detergents that have matchy-smelling dryer sheets.

You could also try switching detergents whenever you replace them? You'll always notice the new smell more, and even if others can't smell your awesome detergent they will notice your air of sweet-smelling confidence.


@teaandcakeordeath I vote for the classic smell combo of original scent Tide and Bounce sheets. It has not been improved upon. It is known.


@teaandcakeordeath OH MAN. 'Gain apple mango tango' detergent makes your laundry smell amazing. It is the only detergent that I've ever used that does this, and it's fantastic for sheets.


@ All
Thank you pintariat!
Hmmm ... laundry smell ...


@teaandcakeordeath Trader Joe's has these lavender packets that make things smell nice without that waxy fabric softener thing.

The Lady of Shalott

I LOVE IRONING. My mom irons everything and passed down the Holy Gospel of Ironing to me starting at about age twelve, so I am actually an expert ironer. I have recently been promoted, at the age of 24, to the highest of expert ratings on ironing: being allowed to iron my father's dress shirts for work.

I iron everything. I iron blue jeans. I iron T-shirts. I iron handkerchiefs. (Shut up. It's soothing.) My boyfriend won't let me iron his combats because everyone at work will make fun of him but I IRON ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING ELSE, OKAY.

Except sheets and underwear. I draw the line there.

dj pomegranate

@The Lady of Shalott I also iron handkerchiefs. They look so nice and fresh when you are done! Sometimes I then put them under my teacup!

Reginal T. Squirge

Yes! All iron everything!


@The Lady of Shalott
I stayed at a friends house and slept on ironed sheets and it was a revelation I will forever be too lazy to do for myself. Sigh.

dj pomegranate

@teaandcakeordeath My mom definitely irons sheets and it is so super duper luxurious. I do it only once in a while, usually when my mom is visiting.


@The Lady of Shalott It is *so* soothing! I iron napkins & tea towels.


@The Lady of Shalott My husband irons his work shirts (button downs) after the wash cycle and then again when they are completely dry before he puts them on. His best friend actually said that she thought he visited them just to use their iron. So, I think the boy loves to iron. I just wished he loved to iron MY stuff, because I'm not a fan. I'm fast at it, but not a fan.


@The Lady of Shalott When I'm having a real anxiety-fest, I'll actually iron the money in my wallet. I know this is insane. I just ... it's soothing. I'll actually do this BEFORE I do useful things like shirts and skirts.


I don't iron anything, ever, (but I don't have a job where I need pressed shirts, either, so YMMV) and I love my little Esteam Travel Steamer. An old boyfriend had one and the first time I used it on a chiffon dress I thought it was magic.


I haven't owned an iron since ever. I APOLOGIZE FOR NOTHING

I love the act of it, but it's a waste of time to look 90% instead of 80% awesome, and all of the equipment required to participate in such an act takes up valuable space!


@charizard My mother hated ironing so much she forbade me from buying any garment that required ironing from ages 0-18. That is a lot of sweatpants, my friends.


@parallel-lines you don't iron your sweatpants?! *scoffs*


@redheaded&crazie My mother-in-law irons *everything*, including sweats and underwear. In her defense, her summer house has no dryer so everything is hung out on the line...where bugs can lay eggs on it. Gack.


I honestly don't know what I'd do without my steamer...I enjoy ironing occasionally. It my apartment is too small really so I use a steamer and it saves my life! I very rarely need anything to be 100% pressed so a good going over with the steamer head solves all my crinkly wrinkley problems!


@charizard When my parents got married my dad's mom pulled my mom aside and said "Listen. Bananalise women don't iron. He thinks shirts need to be sent out. Don't disabuse him of this notion." My mom was so on board with this that when I was in preschool I loooved the play iron in the 'playing house' area because I'd never seen one before. To be clear, we're not fancy people, we're just wrinkly people.


Oy so I am the absolute worst with my laundry. I rarely ever buy anything if it says more than "you're gonna have to make an effort above 'throw it in the laundry and hit the button' to keep this one looking nice" on it at all. But even those are sometimes sad. FOR INSTANCE I am currently wearing a cotton tee with some flower embellishments and ruffly sleeves and the flower embellishments, after one wash, sort of went all crumply, and the stitching on the sleeves has curled up to show the underside. I'm assuming I'd need an iron to fix this? Probably? Maybe? Help?

Reginal T. Squirge

Oh shit! Ironing! I know lots about this! I almost never leave the house wearing something not ironed. And I iron pretty much every day. As soon as I'm done wearing it, it gets ironed and goes back in the closet. This way, my entire wardrobe is ready to go and I can dress according to mood ("This? This is morning mist.").

Anyway... first, get rid of your non-iron shirts. Seriously, they are revolting.

Second, you don't need to send your shirts to the cleaners every time you wear them/want them ironed. Wear them a few times until they get stained/musty and THEN send them out. I never machine/hand wash my shirts but I also don't want to spend a fortune on dry cleaning, so I get at least a few wears in before I dry clean.

Third, just learn how to iron. You're a grown-up now and it's part of grown-up life. If you do it often, it only takes a few minutes.

I have a really good method for ironing shirts (including French cuffs!) that is much faster and better than most methods. I should seriously make a video one day.


@Reginal T. Squirge so what YOU'RE saying is you can iron something without washing it first! is that what you're saying?

I can hear Jolie's voice in my head "heat sets a stain" so okay, don't iron something if it's stained or dirty without washing it first but what if it's not?!

Reginal T. Squirge

Yes, you can! I iron after every single wear but only wash every few wears! Although, I should probably mention that I am basically a reptile and run cold all the time so I don't sweat much. The biggest factor for me having to wash shirts is that thing wear you get stains on the collar because your skin cells rub off on the fabric (or whatever).

Never iron a stain, though.


@Reginal T. Squirge yay! I'm going to go home and iron all my summer skirts that I haven't been wearing because the waistbands are all wrinkled. I suppose I'll have to check them carefully for stains.

I don't sweat too much, but either way it's my skirts that are the problem and they're ... not a big sweat zone to begin with i suppose.

Reginal T. Squirge

Right. Pants last a lot longer between washings than shirts, in my experience.


How do I clean my iron? I have an amazing iron and I iron everything but the last time I ironed it spewed orange water on my beautiful white sheets. I promise to be good and put distilled water in it in the future :(


@oodelally Yeah, the face of mine is all cruddy. How do you get that stuff off?


@oodelally I think the important thing to note here is YOU IRON YOUR SHEETS!?

I freakin' hate the wrinkly sheet thing, but I still can't be bothered to iron them. Hat tip to you, madam.


@Kirs Haha for some odd reason I find ironing sheets extremely therapeutic - I also have a twin bed so it's pretty manageable. I do realize it's a little crazy though!


@oodelally Make sure you empty the iron of all water when you're done.

@laurel My mom gave me this stuff and it works like a charm to clean your iron. It's Faultless Iron Cleanser. Who knew "draggy coating" was even a thing?!


I stopped ironing about a decade ago (say, when I started grad school?) but I interrupt this thread to say yeahhhhh Barnard!

(carry on)


@thisisunclear I don't iron either! But I had a funny little ironing board at Barnard and a non-working iron from Duane Reade that I carted around faithfully for four years, from the Quad to Plimpton to 616 and...

Jolie Kerr

Aaaand ... there are my Barnard girls! I still have my faithful Chopster that I bought at Lechters in 1995. Bless our alma mater and Sulz, 600, 616, and 620! (and the Theta house!)


@Jolie Kerr Lechters! I still have the sweater organizers I bought there in 2000 for my closet in Reid. Last I recall, the space where Lechters had been was a bank, but I think it might be something else now. Barnard girls: we're everywhere.


my ironing question is, do i reeeeeeeeeeally have to wash my skirts before I iron them? can I get away with ironing the waistband without washing them first? If I wash my skirts all the time they'll get all gross and shit. Y'know???


@redheaded&crazie Yeah, they have to be clean. Because otherwise you're ironing the dirt right into them. And if it's oil from your skin, you're burning that into the fabric...gross and terrible!
So: don't wash your skirts all the time, just buy a steam iron! You can use that on dirty-ish clothes with WAY less guilt.

fondue with cheddar

LW #1: How about one of those pet grooming mitts?

fondue with cheddar

Jolie, I love that he calls you Joles. Maybe lots of people call you Joles, but still...cute.


But Jolie why do you hate fabric softener? It smells so nice and makes your clothes non-crusty! Is it the greasy residue?


@thenewbrunette It coats your clothes. It's bad for the fabric, bad for the environment, and actually makes your clothes more flammable. You're specifically not supposed to use in on children's clothes for that reason.
Dryer sheets are pretty okay, in my opinion. Just not on towels! Dryer sheets make your towels less absorbent.


@gobblegirl Wow didn't know about the flammable thing! Pretty scary. I guessed it wasn't great for the environment, but thought that probably wasn't Jolie's objection to it, considering her feelings for bleachie! So I have an excuse to buy more white vinegar? (I love using using that stuff for household tasks! It feels so wholesome!)


@thenewbrunette I think I saw Martha Stuart once say if you're going to use dryer sheets, use only 1/2 a sheet, and you don't need to use them every single time you wash/dry clothes. And never with towels.


Jolie and LW1 THANK YOU for the answer to the purple towel problem. My mother-in-law gave us a set of luxurious purple towels for Christmas and I love them but every time I dry myself I come out looking like Grimace.


@solidgold One year my mom bought me a totally awesome red flannel nightgown from J. Peterman and the first time I slept in it, it turned my entire body bright red.


@Xanthophyllippa I have an amazing fluffy navy blue hoodie that has been washed many times and still gives me Cookie Monster skin.

Ruby Levine@facebook

Unrelated to this but I tried to clean my sandals with Oxiclean as recommended here, and it took the varnish off my deck, where I was cleaning them. What does this mean? Should I be afraid of Oxiclean? Did I do something wrong?


Crap. After reading all the comments, I now know that I am going to have to start ironing the sheets. Goddamnit.

Put me in the category of those who enjoy ironing. I find it (along with vacuuming and dishes) oddly therapeutic.

Also, squee. Just because. :D


Press cloths! Starch! Clean person orgasm.


speaking of fluffy towels...

how do you keep fluffy towels (technically 'bath sheets') fluffy? They start off AMAZING and awesome and then gradually just become.. meh.


@Jade Make sure they're completely clean and not matted with fabric softeners; that they're dried completely for maximum fluffage; that they're made from Egyptian cotton, which I wrote about downthread. The latter will repay you many times over in happiness, I am not exaggerating!


Jolie, I've been waiting for a new post to thank you for introducing me to the Bona, but I see I also need to congratulate you, according to my twitter feed, you have a book deal!


ALSO: CONGRATULATIONS, LADY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


@Matt Not until Monday, I thought?


@Matt Seconded! Wooo hoooo, Christmas presents for everyone ever, and also going to college graduation gifts, along with gift cards!


We can all know how to be clean without an internet connection now.


@Matt Couldn't have happened to a more awesome person. Made my entire fucking day.


@Brunhilde I would rather have a book near me while cleaning than my laptop, that's for sure.



@Matt I am so unbelievably excited about this. Jolie, write fast, because my brother is graduating college in a month and he'll need this...immediately. YAY congratulations, how wonderful, etc. (But seriously, YAY)

Also, can we talk about the URL headline (http://observer.com/2012/05/17/mini-martha-jolie-kerr-sells-housekeeping-guide-to-penguins-plume/) and how it looks like Jolie just got a book deal selling a Housekeeping Guide for Penguins?

mine de rien

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I would read that book. I will read Jolie's actual book as well, of course, probably weekly, but... sometimes you just really need to know How To Get Fish Guts Out Of Nearly Everything, and Pingu doesn't make a whole lot of sense, y'know?

Kim Weisberg@twitter

I have these towels that shed their little turquoise fuzz balls everywhere...but I think it's less from not washing enough and more from being $4.99 towels from Target?


Probably no one is still reading now, but when I was a candy striper (do girls still do that?) we were told to take some hand cream and pat it on our pantyhose in the skirt vicinity to stop our crazy polyester uniforms from sticking to them with static. I wouldn't rub hand cream on your clothes, but if it's a pantyhose situation, it will work. Or of course you can always use a dryer sheet and just rub it right on your clothes. That works too.


No idea if this thread is still active but anyways: I borrowed a gorgeous silk Marc Jacobs dress today and it was only after trying it on that I noticed a few stains, like dried gravy or sauce or something (?), right at the neckline. What's the best way to spot-clean silk? I kinda don't want to dry clean it, since I'm going to do it anyway before returning it, can I do it with a rag and mild detergent? Also, hanging it in the bathroom while I shower, much better/easier than pressing?


I have learned The Secret of Cotton Happiness and it is the long-stranded Egyptian cotton. When I replace my washed-down regular cotton towels, it will be for towels made of this. The sheets I own that are made of this feel divine, and they don't shed lint. When buying cotton it's not the thread count that's important, it's the length of the fibre. This is the cotton those Arab Sheiks are wearing, which has that gorgeous silky luster in photographs. Pima cotton is almost as good.


I always thought Jolie was a lesbian, for some reason? I guess I just wanted her on my team!


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