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3 Things You Thought You Couldn’t Clean, But You Can

1.    Backpacks When you really think about it, backpacks can get pretty disgusting. They are carried nearly every day, slung on the floor next to a desk, thrown on the floor of the bus, spilled lunch, but don’t toss that nasty pack, save money buying a new one and wash the one you have. To wash a backpack first check the label in the pack. If the material says it can not be submerged in water a spot clean with a gentle cleaning solution should work. (Personal note:  As a mom of a boy, I always spritz it with some disinfectant for good measure!) If you can wash it in water, first check the pack for any stains and try to scrub them out or pre-treat with stain remover allowing it to sit for about 30 minutes. Turn the pack inside out, to keep the zippers and straps from getting caught in the machine or damaging the washer. Launder using a gentle detergent and a cold-water cycle. Air dry the pack; tumble drying could damage the backpack. Hang it upside down, outside if you can. When it’s completely dry it’s ready to go.

2.    Baseball Caps Baseball caps can get pretty gross with sweat and dirt.  If your cap is looking a little gross, you can wash it and give it new life. If the cap is just a bit dirty, a spot clean and a quick soak in cool water will get it clean. But if it is really dirty and filled with sweat stains, fill a sink with cool water and add a color safe oxygen bleach, scrub out specific stains and then let the hat soak in the water for around an hour.  Rinse the hat with cool, clean water and air dry the hat. Note:  If the baseball cap has a cardboard brim (not plastic) you will not want to submerge the hat in water as it will damage the cardboard. Spot clean only.

3.    Linen As always, check the label of the item you need to launder. Most linen items can be washed in cold water on a gentle cycle. If the item has grass stains or underarm residue, spot clean the area with a damp cotton cloth, for underarm residue turn the item inside out, dampen it and sprinkle oxygen whiter onto the spot and then let it sit for about 15 minutes. Linen can be dried in the dryer, however, do not let it dry for a full cycle. Toss it in the dryer for about 10 minutes on low and then remove and hang the garment to allow it to dry completely.

Get New Life Out of Your Stuff Skip the expense of buying a new bag or taking that linen dress to the dry cleaners and keep your favorite hat with these simple steps. You can wash these items and keep them looking as good as new. Additionally, keeping these items clean and in good shape will ensure they are around for longer.

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