Are Dryer Sheets Necessary For Laundry? Or Can I Skip Them?

Many people use fabric softener to retain fragrance on their clothes, while many use a dryer at the lowest heat setting to reduce static electricity. Others believe that not using a drying sheet helps remain the clothes’ durability and avoids skin irritation. All are correct.

In this article, we explain are dryer sheets necessary? Or can you completely ignore it? Continue to read this article and find your answer.

Are Dryer Sheets Necessary?

Purpose of a Dryer Sheet?

The dryer sheets are square fabrics made of thin polyester dipped in fabric softener, thus bearing the pleasant scent of rose, citrus, lavender, milk flowers, etc. Therefore, the dryer sheets are often used to retain the perfume on clothes. The dryer sheets also help reduce static build-up – a phenomenon that often occurs during the drying process.

Furthermore, the dryer sheets have a silicone oil-based fabric softener coating, making clothes or sheets flatter, effectively reducing wrinkles. 

As a result, the clothes are also much softer, giving a good feeling to the skin when worn. For these reasons, many believe that the dryer sheets are a necessity when drying clothes.

Image from Bounce

What If You Don’t Use Dryer Sheets?

If you don’t opt for dryer sheets during the tumble drying process, clothes will not retain fragrance, wrinkles, and softness. 

However, this might also be a good idea as the coating on the dryer sheets is not good for all fabrics such as fur, absorbent fabric, flame retardant fabric, etc.

Do You Have to Use Dryer Sheets?

As can be seen, dryer sheets have many benefits, but when the question emerges, are dryer sheets necessary? The answer is no! For more reasons, you can read further below.

Also read: Are Dryer Sheets Compostable or Recyclable? – Best Ways to Reuse Them!

Why Skip Dryer Sheets?

Dryer Sheets Can Reduce Absorbency

Dryer sheets used for towels cloth will make the towel slippery and greasy because of its oil-based coating. That is the reason the towel loses its original absorbency when combined with dryer sheets. That means you can no longer use them for their sole purpose, to wipe moisture from the desired places.

Dryer Sheets Reduce Wicking

As to how the dryer sheets reduce the water-resistance, they are also a bad influence on your sportswear. Surely you know, sportswear’s are produced particularly focusing on absorbing moisture. 

However, the grease on the dryer pads can reduce their ability to absorb moisture, leaving the wearer drowned in sweats while doing sports.

The Dryer Sheet Can Lose The Fire Resistance on Clothing

Usually, children’s sleepwear is fire-resistant, but the coating leftover is often prone to reducing this effectiveness. 

Likewise, fire retardant clothing cannot use dryer sheets.

Dryer Sheet Coating Can Cause Health-Related Problems

The dryer sheets from unreliable brands might be covered with harmful chemicals, and once used; they will cling to your clothes or escape into the environment. So, low-quality dryer sheets can have hurt personal health.  

And if you are environmentally conscious, dryer sheets might not be your best friend. Therefore, many people choose not to use dryer pads for their laundry. Especially people with respiratory problems or sensitive skin are not recommended to use this product.

Read: Winter Coat Care: Should I Dry Clean My Wool Coat?

Pros and Cons of Using Dryer Sheets

Here we will summarize the advantages and disadvantages of dryer sheets for you to consider.

Advantages of Using Dryer Sheets:

  • Reduces static electricity
  • Softens clothes
  • Flattens’ clothes
  • Reduces friction
  • Reduce the problem with lint
  • Retains scent on clothes

Disadvantages of Using Dryer Sheets:

  • Might contain toxic chemicals
  • Affects health
  • Is irritating to sensitive skin
  • Causes absorbency reduction
  • Causes water resistance reduction
  • Eliminates fire resistance
  • Lengthens clothes drying time.

Alternatives to Dryer Sheets

If you choose not to use dryer sheets, great news, here are some chemical-free suggestions.

The first alternative we suggest is a fabric softener that can be used for washing machines. Fabric softener has some similar effects to dryer sheets, such as softening clothes, retaining fragrances, but it is safer to use.

The wool dryer ball is another option that is good for your health and environmental protection. You can use it for more than a thousand cycles, completely free of chemicals.

Another way is to hand dry your clothes naturally. This way is completely safe but more time.

Some of the home-made creative ideas that some people use are vinegar, baking soda, tennis ball, or aluminum foil. Detail:

  • Vinegar: You can use an appropriate amount of vinegar for the size of your laundry. Typically, for a batch of laundry, you add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of vinegar directly to your washing machine; it will act as a fabric softener.
  • Baking soda: With baking soda, you can add about ¼ to your laundry during the rinsing process.
  • Tennis ball: You just need to prepare a piece of foil big enough to wrap around the ball and place it in the washing machine to dry with damp clothes.
  • Aluminum foil: You take a piece of aluminum foil, wrap it up. Finally, you put it in the dryer before the tumble drying process.

However, most if not all, the above methods will bring all other benefits but scenting your laundry. So, if you want fragrant clothes, you can add a couple of drops of essential oils before the final rinse cycle.

Read: Is Dryer Lint Recyclable? – Find out Answer as Desired

In Sum

This article has answered the question: “Are dryer sheets necessary?” Besides, you can find some reasons to completely get rid of them, maybe with some alternatives, we suggested. 

As you might have just read, the dryer sheets bring many benefits but also many harms. So, have the exact answer for yourself and decide on a suitable choice for your clothes. Thank you for reading the article!

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