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How Often Is It Normal To Do Laundry? + What’s best for you

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Some household chores never end, and laundry tops that list! Whether you dislike laundry day or are obsessed with cleaning, knowing the ideal washing frequency can be beneficial in more ways than one. So, how often should you do laundry? 

It’s normal to do laundry at least once a week. For optimal hygiene, wash all underwear after each wear and everyday garments after about two to four times of wear. Wash towels, bedclothes, and pillowcases once a week or whatever timeline works for your family. 

The rest of this guide will help you figure out the most efficient way to do laundry. Luckily, it isn’t as often as many people think. So, I suggest you read up first before tackling your next load of laundry. 

How Often Should an Average Family Do Laundry?

Laundry day is different across households. However, the cleaning method determines how frequently people wash their clothes, sheets, and other household linens in most homes. 

Last fall I asked our community how often they do laundry.

For example, families who use washing machines and dryers are likely to do laundry less often. Instead, in many cases, they stick to cleaning their clothes about once a week. 

On the other hand, households that use hand-washing will likely do laundry more frequently—perhaps, even daily. 

The average family should do laundry as often as once a week. And while there are no strict rules with these kinds of chores, washing less frequently will save time, effort, and cost of detergent. Plus, it’ll reduce energy and water consumption. 

But there’s a catch. 

Not all clothing items and household linens are the same. 

For this reason, it’s best to do laundry based on how frequently you wear or use the item instead of how many hours you use them. 

You don’t want to wear undershirts or panties more than once before washing, right?

General Guidelines for Laundry Frequency

Here are some general guidelines you might want to adopt: 

  • Wash underwear after every use. Clothing items that have direct and frequent contact with your skin require more frequent cleaning. These include bras, undershirts, underpants, boxer shorts, and socks. 
  • Consider washing everyday clothes after about two to four times of wear. There’s no need to wash shorts, pants, shirts, and dresses too frequently. The exception is if you sweat a lot or the clothes are visibly dirty after a full day’s use. 
  • Wash towels once a week. Although towels have direct contact with your skin, you don’t want to wash them every day since they don’t have them on your body for more than a few minutes at a time. 
  • Clean your sheets and pillowcases once a week. You can wait until two weeks, though, especially if you don’t use them daily. However, washing bedclothes every three to four days is ideal if your pet sleeps in your bed. 
  • Consider washing blankets, duvet covers, and comforters once every two to three months. If you use washable pillows, you can wait until about four to six months before washing them. 
  • Clean other household linens as often as they become dirty. Tablecloths, hand towels, curtains, and aprons all fall into this category. 
  • Clean the blankets and other bedding materials at least once in two weeks if you have pets. It’s usually best to factor in your pet’s behavior when deciding how often to do the laundry. 

I wrote a guide on washing machine care that you should check out.

How To Make Laundry More Efficient

Are you feeling overwhelmed already? 

Don’t worry so much. 

Here are three ways to help you stay on top of this less-than-appealing household chore:

  • Incorporate other fun activities you enjoy into laundry day. For example, you can use the time to listen to your favorite podcast or stream an audiobook as you wash, iron, and neatly put the clothing items away. 
  • Provide a high-priority laundry basket for your family. Only put the most pressing laundry in this bin. This way, you can wash them first. 
  • Fold or roll clothes as soon as they’re out of the dryer. That way, a pile of clothes waiting for you later in the day won’t drive you nuts! 

How Often Should One Person Do Laundry?

Humans shed an alarming amount of skin cells per day. The Journal of Dermatological Science puts the figure at 500 million skin cells every day! 

That’s beside a couple of liters of sweat we produce each day, even without too much physical activity. 

Our clothes and sheets are at the receiving end, soaking up the sweat and dirt. If you don’t wash your clothes as often as you should, it can lead to body odor and other skin problems. 

Now, it’s easy to see why you should treat laundry more seriously, even if you loathe the chore! 

One person should do laundry as often as after two to four times of wear. This washing frequency is particularly applicable if you don’t work up a sweat and you’re only wearing the clothes for a few hours a day. Try to do laundry more frequently if you sweat a lot. 

The average person only does their own laundry once a week.

Hire Someone Else To Do Your Laundry if You’re Always Busy

If you’re single and always busy with work, perhaps you should consider getting someone else to help you with your laundry. Hiring a professional laundry service to clean your clothes regularly might be a good idea.

Although laundry pickup is a more expensive option than doing your laundry, it saves time and energy. 

Try To Do Laundry Once a Week if You’re a Student

Laundry frequently for a college student usually depends on how many clothes they have. 

Generally, you should do laundry at least once every other week. However, it’s okay to let laundry day wait longer if you have plenty of clothes to wear. 

How Many Loads of Laundry Does the Average Person Do a Month?

The average person does between 8 and 20 loads of laundry a month. This laundry frequency comes down to two to five loads per week. However, it’ll depend on the washing method, the individual’s schedule, the size of the load, and, of course, their level of hygiene. 

The type of washing machine can also determine the load size you can choose—large, medium, or small. 

Overloading your machine in a bid to finish laundry quickly isn’t a good idea. You’re overloading your washer if you’re pushing clothes down. 

Final Thoughts

How often you do laundry depends on whether you’re single or a family with kids and pets. Washing once a week is good, but cleaning your underwear every day is ideal. 

I wrote a detailed list of the 6 best laundry delivery services that may interest you.

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