A clothes drying rack is an essential tool for any home. I have had several, and they have each had their benefits and drawbacks. I do have a gas clothes dryer, but a clothes drying rack is still an essential companion.
In this article, I want to talk about how to find the best clothes drying rack for your needs. Still not convinced you need one? Read on to find out why I swear by my clothes drying rack.
Why Air Dry Clothes?
If you have a dryer, you may be wondering “Why air dry clothes, anyway?” I’m sure you have been burned (see what I did there?) by your clothes dryer before in a number of ways. I have shrunken nice sweaters, damaged delicate materials, and stretched out clothes because of the ways I have washed them in the past.
All of these problems could have been solved by a clothes drying rack. Let’s take a look at the pitfalls of the modern clothes dryer.
The Shrunken Sweater
If your sweater managed to survive the wash cycle, it may perish in the drying cycle. Wool sweaters and wool sweater blends are notorious for both stretching in the wash and shrinking in the dryer.
By avoiding the dryer all together for your sweaters, you have the opportunity to fix some of these common issues.
Tip: If you have a misshapen sweater, don’t put it in the dryer! Stretch and bend it back into shape, then lay it flat to air dry on a clothes drying rack.
Some fabrics, such as delicate lace (think underwear!) and fabrics with plastic appliqués in them will be damaged by the dryer even on your lowest setting.
While we are talking about underwear, Ladies, did you know according to Soma, one of the leading bra and underwear retailers you shouldn’t put your bras in the dryer?
Yet another great reason to have a clothes drying rack!
Avoid Stretched Out Clothes
I’ve noticed that sometimes clothing with elastic in it stretches out over time, or something gets knotted up in the dryer and stretches out.
Air drying clothes avoids both of these common pitfalls.
Air Dry Baby Clothes
Baby clothes are a necessary evil. Your baby has to wear something! Unfortunately, many baby clothes shrink and you get even less use out of them than you originally intended.
If you air dry baby clothes, you will get a couple more wears out of them before your baby outgrows them! This is especially true of baby PJs.
Air Drying Clothes Benefits
There are other benefits to air drying your clothes, besides avoiding clothing damage.
- Less energy usage. Whether you have a gas or electric clothes dryer, running your dryer uses energy and increases your utility bills.
- You won’t heat up your home. While a dryer can provide some toasty warmth in the winter, it is a pain in the summer! My laundry room has a door, but still feels like a sauna in the summer. I didn’t have a door in my previous house, and the whole second floor heated up when I used the dryer!
Air drying your clothes is both more cost effective and environmentally friendly, and you won’t ruin your clothes!
Other Uses for Clothes Drying Racks
Besides air drying the clothes you have washed, here are some other great practical uses for clothes drying racks.
- Hang bathing suits and towels to dry. Where else are you going to put them after running through the sprinkler.
- Hang clothes to air them out. Many stores these days are pumping their clothes full of perfumes and scents. If an article of clothing smells too much to wear it, simply air it out on a clothes drying rack for a couple of days.
- Hang other wet clothes. Giving fido or the baby a bath? Chances are you are going to be wearing the bath water! Hanging your clothes on a clothes drying rack is a much better solution than letting them collect mold in a ball forgotten someplace.
Picking the Best Clothes Drying Rack
Here are some things to think about when trying to find the best clothes drying rack:
- Where are you going to use your clothes drying rack? Do you have a dedicated space for it such as a laundry room, or will it be in your living room?
- Where will you store the rack when you are not using it? Does it need to be folded and put away? Or can you leave it out someplace?
- Who will be using the clothes drying rack? Pay special attention to how much it weighs.
These are all important considerations when picking a clothes drying rack. If it is going to be in a living area, we will want to make sure it is aesthetically pleasing and blends in with our decor.
If you are going to be putting a clothes drying rack in your main living space, there are lots of ways to be creative.
My personal favorite is using a coat rack as a clothes drying rack or coat hooks. It blends in with your surroundings if you pick the right one. I use my coat rack and hooks for drying things like hoodies.