We've all been there. We buy the pretty-smelling detergents and fabric softeners, only to find that none of it lingers once our clothing has been run through the dryer. Adding more detergent and softener is bad for your wardrobe (and the environment), so what's a person to do?

As silly as it may seem, fresh-smelling laundry is one of the most comforting things ever (helllllo, clean sheets), and it can be kind of frustrating for fabrics to smell like nothing but, er, nothing when all is said and done. Luckily, the most effective options are also the most sustainable – for your wallet, your time and the environment. Here are a few tips and tricks:

More space

This trick isn't so much an ingredient as it is a technique – simply wash half (or three quarters) of the laundry you normally would when you run the machine. This makes sure your clothing gets totally saturated and wrung out. Many people don't know this, but washing too much laundry at once can yield a pretty ineffective cycle! 

Baking soda 

Next up: eliminating odor. This is an easy trick: Just add about a quarter cup of baking soda to the wash basin while it's filling up (or add it straight to the detergent slot if you have a front load). This will make your clothing softer and help remove any lingering odors in the process. 

Boosted detergent

One major tool when making your clothing smell great is essential oil. It comes in a ton of different scents and is very potent in just a few drops. The first place you can use it is in your detergent itself. It's important in this instance to use scent-free detergent (it sounds counterproductive, but trust us on this one). Essential oils will stick to your clothing for a lot longer and take up much less storage space in your utility cabinets! 

Linen spray 

You can purchase different linen sprays in stores, but the easiest way to do this is with your favorite essential oil (about a dozen drops), a little water and a glass spray bottle. Simply fill the bottle with mostly water, add those drops, and mix it up. Then spritz this linen spray on your clothing after it comes out of the dryer! 

DIY dryer sheets

Another great way to use those essential oils on your clothing is with a DIY dryer sheet. Add another dozen drops to an old wash cloth, and throw it in the dryer when your clothes have gone through a full cycle. The key to this? A quick, no-heat cycle after a normal one. 

See? It's easy! The great news about these methods is that they also allow for consistency. Your clothing will receiving the same scent during every phase of the process, meaning it will be that much more potent when it's hanging in your closet – or your body. 

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