Laundry 101 | How to Sort Clothes


Whether you're out on your own for the first time, heading off to college or just never learned how to sort clothes when doing laundry, this post is for you. Now, I am not a fan of doing laundry. I find the task tedious and time consuming. With that said, it is necessary if I don't want to be considered a complete grub walking around in dirty clothes. Because I'm not a fan of laundry, I have developed habits to make the task a little more manageable.


I used to wait until the last possible minute (read: out of underwear) to do my laundry, and I would never sort my clothes. Instead, I would pile as much laundry as I could into one load as possible in an attempt to get it over with. However, not taking the time to sort my clothes properly always back fired on me, for several reasons. 


  1. I never wanted to fold/put away all the clothes I washed because I didn't know how to sort clothes, and therefore, the loads were massive.

  2. My clothes didn't look their best because I didn't know how to sort clothes to keep them looking their best, longer.

  3. I ran through detergent because I didn't know how to sort clothes therefore allowing my detergent to work smarter, not harder.

  4. I ended up spending more money on clothes than was necessary because I would ultimately have to buy new clothes to replace the pieces that weren't standing up in the wash.


As I said earlier, I have never been, and don't think I ever will be, a fan of doing laundry. However, knowing how to sort clothes and what essentials you need to do laundry make the job far less time consuming and more manageable. If I've let my laundry pile up throughout the week, or over the course of several weeks, the first thing I do before even looking at the washing machine is sort clothes. 


I used to sort my clothes into darks and lights, the way most people sort their clothes, if they even sort them at all. I sorted my clothes this way because it's what I thought we were supposed to do. However, if I was in a rush I was likely to throw as much as I could in one load. However, now I sort my clothes a little differently, I learned this method for how to sort clothes from Jamie Page of FunCheaporFree (here is her video), and it has been a life saver! Since implementing this technique, I have resolved all of my laundry mishaps that I mentioned earlier. 


How to Sort Clothes


I continue to separate out whites, simply to keep them looking their brightest, longer. But, instead of sorting the rest of the clothes into light and dark, I now sort them by fabric weight. Huh? Oh yes, fabric weight. What do I mean? I thought you'd never ask!


Fabric weight refers to the thickness, or weight, of the fabric. Here is how I break up my loads:


  • Towels + Wash Cloths + Microfibers (depending on what they were used for)

  • Pants + Denim + Shorts + Sweat Pants

  • Athletic Wear + Anything Nylon

  • Cotton (Shirts, Polos, Light-weight Shorts, PJs, etc)

  • Whites



These are the 4 main categories I sort my clothes into when doing laundry. Miscellaneous thing like bedding get their own load simply because of the volume they take up in the wash, but this is my method for everything else.  Sorting my clothes this was saves me so much time, supplies and energy. It also makes laundry more manageable because my loads are broken down into more smaller sizes. (Interested in seeing our Laundry 101 | How to Sort Clothes video?) Our clothes are lasting longer, maintaining their quality and coming out more clean than before. All because sorting your clothes by fabric thickness/weight allows your detergent to actually work and get your clothes their cleanest. 



Now that I've started using this method I automatically sort our clothes like this throughout the week as laundry starts to accumulate. This way, once I have enough for a load I can start the load. I highly recommend you giving this method a go! Let us know what you think! 


If you're a real newbie, never done your own laundry and have no idea what to do next now that you know how to sort your clothes, stay tuned. Up next in the Laundry 101 series is  how to use a washing machine. We will be going over how to load your washing machine, what setting you should use and more.


If you have a particular question, drop it in the comments below. Did this post help you feel more comfortable about tackling your own laundry?