How to Get Your Laundry Whites Even Whiter

Keeping your white clothes looking bright can seem hard, as they naturally become gray or yellow with time, and stains are more easily seen. If you want to make your whites look fresh and new, there are many simple methods you can use. You might need to try different approaches, but the results will be worth the effort.

Make your white clothes whiter.

Launder your clothes right when you notice a stain. Inspect garments when you take them off, and look for stains or fading in the crotch, underarm and neck, recommends "Womans Day" magazine. Wash clothes in the hottest cycle.

Pretreat whites, especially if you are not able to wash them right away. Soak them in water mixed with store-bought whitener or use a solution of water and lemon juice. Add 1 tsp. of lemon juice per cup of water. Follow the directions on the store-bought whitener for the correct amount to use.

Apply vinegar or lemon juice to tough stains, enough to cover the whole stain. Let the piece of clothing sit for five to 10 minutes before washing.

Add 1/2 cup of washing soda to your laundry load to whiten clothes and other white fabrics. Add oxygen bleach to the load also. Follow the directions on the bottle for the correct amount.

Hang clothes to dry under the sun to remove leftover stains. Use a drying rack.

Check your iron for dirty water or starch build-up that could be staining your white clothes. Run the iron over wax paper regularly to remove starch.

Things You Will Need

  • Washing machine
  • Whitener
  • Lemon
  • Vinegar
  • Washing soda
  • Oxygen bleach
  • Drying rack
  • Wax paper


  • Refer to your local dry cleaner to clean tough stains, as they might have more resources, such as better washing machines or stronger products.
  • Add salt to dark liquid spills right away to absorb moisture.


  • Avoid using bleach, as it can damage some fabrics.

About the Author

Lucia Mata has been writing since 2008, covering parenting and design topics. Her work has appeared in both English and Spanish publications. Mata has an Associate of Arts in interior design from Salt Lake Community College and a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Utah Valley University.

Photo Credits

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