You may have heard about the newest “trend” in laundry, laundry stripping, the practice of removing buildup from fabrics—typically towels—that accumulate from detergent residue, fabric softener, minerals from hard water, and more. But get a load of this—laundry stripping isn’t new. The practice has been around for years, but as of late, social media has served up some pretty impressive before, during, and afters, featuring footage of bathtubs filled with filthy water—the result of stripping towels and sometimes sheets. Naturally, this has led people to question whether their laundry is actually as clean as they think it is. (Plus, all that grime is oddly satisfying to look at at.)
The thing is, laundry stripping can be harsh on your fabrics, leading to damage over time, which is exactly what you don’t want. The sweet spot is to use the right products and methods that are effective, but still gentle on your fabrics. That’s why here at The Laundress, we refer to our method as pretreating instead of laundry stripping. Here’s how to do it.