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A Lesson In Laundry 101

Whether you've got a big family, an empty nest, or you live alone, you have to get the laundry done and it can be a real hassle.

So The Saturday Early Show got some helpful hints from the "Healthy Housekeeper," Laura Dellutri, who has authored the book "White Couch, With Kids."

For starters, Laura says doing the laundry doesn't have to be an awful chore.

The layout and equipment in your laundry room can make a huge difference; Laura says a good addition to any laundry room is a folding table near the appliances.

If you don't have the space for a folding table, ironing board and two side-by-side appliances, Laura recommends stackable appliances, as well as a wire shelf that allows you to hang-dry clothes and store your laundry supplies above.

In recent years, more and more appliance makers have started selling front-loading washers and dryers in the U.S. One combo is the Frigidaire Afinity washer and dryer, which are high-efficiency appliances.

The machines are extra large and cost a little more but Laura says the price is worth it in the long run, since you will see savings on your water and electricity bills.

If you do get a high efficiency or "HE" machine, keep in mind that since they use 70 percent less water than conventional washers, you have to get special HE detergents, which are widely available in supermarkets. Use regular detergent, and chances are your clothes will be sudsy. Laura says it is okay to use regular fabric softener in the HE washers.

For the dryer, Laura says Bounce recently introduced a new type of dryer sheet that actually helps repel animal hair.

One of the more unpleasant tasks of doing the laundry is ironing but there is a new iron on the market that will prevent you from burning your clothes.

It's called the "Oliso" iron and has an auto-lift feature. Touch the iron and the surface lowers onto the fabric and your iron as you normally would. Let go and the iron lift up, so it's not in contact with the fabric.

An additional benefit is that, thanks to the auto-lift feature, the iron is tip proof, so there are fewer worries that your kids or pets will get burned by a falling iron.

Last but not least, if you really can't stand ironing, there's a new spray called "I Hate Ironing," which sells for about $5.

Related Links:

  • The Healthy Housekeeper
  • Frigidaire
  • Oliso Iron
  • I Hate Ironing