It’s good to learn from our mistakes and the mistakes of others. Whether you’ve already branched out on your own and are used to regularly doing your own laundry, or you’re still new to this one inevitable fact of life, these hilarious laundry mishaps from five real life working women will have you laughing (and maybe reminiscing about your own laundry disasters) and getting some words of wisdom all in one. They’ve even been so kind as to tell us their favorite pro tips after living and learning their way through loads and loads of laundry!
Dina Helmy: Life Coach, mother of 3
Once I had to wash 2 bed covers and I owned this huge GE American style washing machine/dryer. It was so big to the point that I thought I can wash both bed covers together in the same cycle. This was when I learned to never overestimate anything. The load was so heavy that when it started spinning, I was sitting in the living room and all of a sudden it’s like I heard an explosion in the bathroom. It almost sounded like gun shots and the washing machine got unplugged from the wall it was bouncing and moving so fast. The sound and the moving washing machine almost gave me a heart attack!
Favorite Tip: Separate the laundry in different bins and never wash your towels with regular clothes. You might think you’re saving time, but it will eventually ruin your clothes a lot faster.
Nadine El Garhy, Marketing Manager at Expand Business Development, mother of 2
In the first few months after I got married, our bawab would come to the door daily with clothes that had flown from the laundry line while air drying. After a while, he picked up that this was a regular thing and would gather all the clothes and make it a weekly drop off instead.
Favorite Tip: First, the laundry octopus from Ikea is perfect for socks and underwear. Second, spray stains right away with Clorox Clothes or soak stained items before washing.
Dina Abdelal, Senior Content Producer at CBC, mother of 1
My main problem was that the laundry didn’t do its self. It kept on pilling up in the laundry bin and because I never did laundry before I was astonished, thinking “Why aren’t they washed”, as if I was still living at my mom’s house. I had to face the lovely pile, but it took me a week to realize and my husband, Tarek, to ask for his work shirts. Twice I made the mistake of forgetting the clean laundry in the washing machine for two days. I thought it was OK to leave it for that long as long as I will air dry it, but it stinks. So gross! Tarek didn’t let me hear the end of it after he wore a stinky sweatshirt.
Favorite Tip: Separate clothes as much as possible, like dark colors, whites, towels and bed sheets. And absolutely read the clothes label, which many people rarely do.
Heba Ali, Dentist, mother of 1
I didn’t know that colored clothes can ruin the whites, so one colored shirt was enough to ruin a whole cycle full of shirts! Plus, I also didn’t know that some clothes shouldn’t go in the dryer, so a lot of my things are now are owned by my daughter because they shrank like crazy.
Favorite Tip: You have to treat stains before inserting them in the machine. It’s best to do it immediately and it’s so simple. Begin by rubbing the stain with white vinegar. Rub the stained area with laundry soap and water – as hot as the fabric will allow. If the stain persists, soak overnight with detergent powder and warm water. After this, wash normally with regular detergent.
Sara El Refaie: Food blogger, mother of twins
I washed the clothes with very hot water to guarantee that they will be clean and left them in the machine hoping they would dry alone (I hate hanging clothes out). I took them out the next day, and they had shrunk like crazy and smelled horrible!
Favorite Tip: Do a load of laundry every single day. Never ever let the clothes pile up – never! Once I get in this nightmare, it will forever keep piling up.
Heba El Aasar, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Packwell Packaging Professionals, mother of two
One time I put loads of clothes I thought were too dirty and needed extra cleaning in the machine, and I over used the detergent. I came in to find the bathroom had turned into one big bubble bath.
Favorite Tip: Reading the instructions on any laundry product is quiet important; to know when to use it/them, and the right quantity, etc. But we often skip this step.