Doing laundry is just one of those chores that we all have to get on with. While we can't make it disappear with the click of a finger, we can make it a bit easier - that's where dryer balls come in! An eco-friendly alternative to dryer sheets, dryer balls have become popular in recent years. But why should you buy this type of product and where do you even begin shopping for these magical balls?
After explaining the benefits of dryer balls and discussing the various materials that they can be made from, including organic wool, lightweight plastic, and durable rubber, we'll review our favourite products from Amazon and eBay. We'll compare the quality, effectiveness, and price of the different brands available online, to help you choose the best ones for your budget. Let's get started!
Dryer balls work just like disposable drying sheets, soaking up any excess moisture left in your clothes after washing and increasing the airflow inside the drum of a tumble dryer, which all helps to make your laundry dry more quickly. Minimising the time spent running your machine will reduce your energy bills too - it's a win-win situation!
Dryer balls also act like a natural fabric softener. As they bounce around inside your tumble dryer, they beat your clothes and reduce static. This means that you can cut out using a separate softening product altogether.
Overall, dryer balls are a great eco-friendly product - they minimise electricity use, only need replacing every 2-3 years, and can be used instead of chemical conditioners to smooth out your clothes.
In this section, we'll go through the different materials that dryer balls can be made from, as well as a few other important points to remember when shopping for this type of product.
So, what are dryer balls made from? Usually it's wool, but there are other options too such as plastic and rubber. We'll run through the pros and cons of each material here, to help you decide which one you'd prefer.
Wool is undoubtedly the most effective material when it comes to assisting drying, so it's the preferred material of most manufacturers. It's highly absorbent and will soak up lots of excess moisture from your clothes, cutting down drying time significantly.
You can also add a few drops of essential oil to this type of material if you want to make your laundry smell fragrant and fresh without the use of synthetic fabric softeners.
As woollen dryer balls are heavier than those made from other materials, they do unfortunately make a fair bit of noise when they're rolling around in your tumble dryer. Furthermore, they can sometimes leave lint on your clothes and they aren't suitable for use in vegan households.
One of the most common complaints about dryer balls is that they can be noisy as they bounce off the walls of your tumble dryer. This may cause issues if your machine is near your bedroom or if you live with people who work different shift patterns.
Enter the lightweight plastic dryer ball - these are much less dense than ones made from wool and create only a light thump as they bounce around the machine, rather than a heavy thud!
The downside to plastic is that it's unable to absorb excess moisture from your clothes like wool does. Still, balls made from this material will reduce static, separate your clothes nicely, and won't keep you up at night with incessant banging!
Dryer balls made from rubber may be a little noisier than plastic, but they don't leave any fibres remaining on your clothes like woollen balls do. This type of material is also particularly good at separating your clothes and increasing airflow around the drum.
While dryer balls made from rubber are generally designed to last longer than wool ones, in reality many split or break after repeated use and will need to be replaced.
If you or your children have particularly sensitive skin, or anyone in the house has any allergies, make sure you go for a hypoallergenic product.
Most woollen options are suitable for those with allergies and plastic tends to be fine too, but rubber can sometimes irritate sensitive skin. To give you peace of mind, we'll mention whether a product is hypoallergenic in the specification table below each review.
If you're trying to reduce your waste as well as do your laundry in a more eco-friendly way, woollen dryer balls are your best bet.
Plastic and rubber balls are usually packed with chemicals, whereas woollen ones are made from 100% natural ingredients with no added chemicals or synthetics. This means that they are usually biodegradable and will break down in around 6 months if placed in warm, damp soil.
When browsing dryer balls, remember to check the durability - not all brands will last for the same amount of time!
Good quality dryer balls should last for at least one year or around 1000 washes; anything less than that doesn't make sense economically or environmentally, especially if you're making the switch from single-use dryer sheets in order to reduce your carbon footprint.
The last thing to check before you hit that all-important buy button is the size of the pack. Some packs only contain 2 or 4 dryer balls, while others come with as many as 6!
Bear in mind that the number of balls that you need will correlate to the size of your laundry load. If you own a large dryer or tend to do one huge load at a time, you'll need around 4 or 5 standard-sized dryer balls. If the balls are extra large, you should only need a couple to get the job done.
Now that you know what to look for in pack of dryer balls, here are our recommendations for the best ones around. Whether you're after something organic, biodegradable, hypoallergenic - or perhaps all three of these qualities - we've got something for you!
|Durability||40 washes (then replace incense sticks)|
Flor De Lis
Natural Dryer Balls
Detergent Laundry Ball
Wool Dryer Balls
Eco Dryer Balls
Wool Dryer Balls
Wool Dryer Balls
Wool Dryer Balls
Merino Wool Dryer Balls
Our Top Choice for Eco-Friendly Drying
An Extremely Durable, Budget-Friendly Option
A Superb Product With Award-Winning Customer Service
Ethically Made and Extremely Efficient
Designed to Make Your Clothes Smell Divine
A Chemical-Free Option for Those With Sensitive Skin
Minimise Static With This Product's Unique Texture
Scented Balls That'll Soften Your Clothes
Cute Designs That Make Laundry More Fun
Affordable, Organic, and Biodegradable
|Material||Merino wool||Plastic||Wool||Wool||Wool||Wool||Rubber||Rubber||Wool||Merino wool|
|Durability||1000 washes||1400 washes||1000+ washes||1000+ washes||1000 washes||1 year||-||40 washes (then replace incense sticks)||1000 washes||1000 washes|
After all this talk of laundry, you might find yourself wanting to invest in a better machine so you can get the most out of your new dryer balls! Click on the links below to see our favourite tumble dryers and washer dryer combos.
After reading through our article, you'll be an expert when it comes to dryer balls. We've given you all the information you need to know and shown you the best ones on the market - now it's down to you to pick! Do you have a favourite yet?
Author: Roxy Pratley
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