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Everyday Cheapskate: Problems, Mistakes and Mysteries -- and How to Solve Them

Mary Hunt on

Laundry challenges, it seems, come in every size, shape, and intensity. Rather than thinking there is no solution for that stain, shrunken item or another laundry disaster, consider the ways you can recover and renew situations gone bad.


Don't be too quick to toss out that favorite sweater that just got shrunk in the hot wash or went through the dryer accidentally set to hot. Chances are good you can unshrink it if you move quickly:

In a large container, make a solution with 1 gallon lukewarm water and 2 tablespoons baby shampoo. Soak the shrunken garment in the solution for about 10 minutes until totally saturated. Now, the important part: Don't rinse! Simply blot out all the excess water with a dry towel and very gently lay it flat on a fresh towel. Reshape slowly and carefully as you stretch it back to its original size. Dry away from direct sunlight or heat.

This technique will work provided the fibers have not become permanently damaged, or "felted."



You've washed and dried that item dozens of times and still the ugly grease or other annoying stain hangs on. Before you toss it out, try one more thing, Lestoil.

It's been around like forever, but so few people know about it. Lestoil, an all-purpose, heavy-duty oil and grease remover, has been manufactured right here in the USA for decades.

Lestoil can be used full-strength on stains, especially really difficult stains -- the kind of stains you just give up on like ink, toner, grease, oil, scuff marks, blood, lipstick, nail polish, paint, grass stains, coffee stains, crayon and marker stains on every surface you can imagine. Even the sticky stuff left behind by stickers and labels. While not only for laundry, Lestoil is a laundry room's best friend and has removed every old stain I'd given up on as well as every new stain I've acquired since the two of us met -- especially on clothing.



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