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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello. My mother sent us a lovely gift of 4 sets of sheets that she used a few times before deciding she wanted different sheets. We really could use them, as we only have 1 set of sheets, and I'm pregnant!<br><br>
Anyway, DD and I are very chemically sensitve, and the smell of the fabric softener just bowled me over when we opened up the boxes from the mail. (DH can barely smell it.) So I immediately washed them w/ vinegar and 7th Generation Laundry Detergent and hot water. I did that twice.<br><br>
Then I moved on to the "sanitary cycle" which nearly cooks the load of laundry for 20 minutes. The whole cycle is 2 hours long.<br><br>
Next, I did a baking soda & vinegar soak with an Oxy-Clean wash.<br><br>
Finally, I did a Bac-Out soak with a 7th Generation wash again.<br><br>
Do you know those sheets are still totally smelly with the fabric softener scent??? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
I would love to hang them outside, but here in the Pacific NW, it will rain until summer w/ maybe a tad of sun here & there.<br><br>
If anybody has any ideas, I would *love* to hear them!!! I really don't want to have to buy sheets when I have some perfectly lovely ones right here.<br><br>
Thanks!!
 

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It is a bummer you can't hang them outside! I think that would do the trick. Hopefully someone else can chime in with another suggestion.
 

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<a href="http://www.charliesoap.com" target="_blank">Charlies</a>
 

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Here are the things I try:<br>
dry milk soak<br>
borax soak<br>
baking soda soak<br>
hot wash<br>
sun<br><br>
And when all else fails (vinegar, enzymes, etc), I go for Calgon water softener laundry treatments. And that usually works. But then I have to wash out the Calgon smell.<br><br>
Hanging them outside may help. UV rays still penetrate the cloud cover. And the rain may help, too!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the suggestions! I emailed the Charlie company and asked specifically if their product would do the trick. I'll also try the Borax soak and some water softener. I'll report back if I have any success.
 

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wow. that's some strooong fabric softener!!<br><br>
I dont have any ideas, as I am known to run the dryer sheets right on the clothes i am wearing and obsessively sniff myself all day.<br><br>
but im shocked at the work you put into it, only to still have a scent! there's gotta be a commercial in that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Stinkerbell</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9907143"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">wow. that's some strooong fabric softener!!<br><br>
I dont have any ideas, as I am known to run the dryer sheets right on the clothes i am wearing and obsessively sniff myself all day.<br><br>
but im shocked at the work you put into it, only to still have a scent! there's gotta be a commercial in that.</div>
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no kidding! Ya want me to ask my mom what she used? You might save yourself some dryer sheets. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> But also, I have a supersonic nose because I am sensitive to scents, plus I'm pregnant. So what is knocking me out may not be so strong to others.<br><br>
I don't want to have to tell my mom we can't use her sheets. She'll be coming up after the baby is born. I hope she'll understand - she seems pretty understanding about all of our sensitivities.
 

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Couldn't you still hang them outside even though it's cold and wet out? I mean, so what if you have to wash them again after hanging them outside?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Ruthla</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9907365"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Couldn't you still hang them outside even though it's cold and wet out? I mean, so what if you have to wash them again after hanging them outside?</div>
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Yes I certainly could. I just thought that strong sunlight was the "key" to this problem. But I can sure try it! I wonder if there's something I should soak it in first (like Borax, vinegar, baking soda...) and hang it outside with that "in" the sheets. I'll wait a day or two -we're having very unusual gusty winds at the moment. But it couldn't hurt to try!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I emailed the Charlie Soap Company, and they said it would "take it right out." So I ordered some. I'll report back.
 

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I had this same issue with a baby blanket that my mil knit for my son while I was still pregnant with him. I am highly alergic to fabric softener and this blanket was SLIMY with it. bleh!<br><br>
I ended up getting it off (after several of the attempts you outlined) by using my natural dish detergent (I use Mountain Green). It worked like a charm!<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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Gma hit ALL the garage sales this summer. We were given some very nice clothes for the boys but 8-10 washes later they still smell like other peoples fabric softener. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">: I am convinced this is part of the secret nuclear waste disposal program. Just bottle it and sell it with a cute bear on the package. BLECH!<br><br>
Fabric softener is wax coating. My suggestion would be Dawn dish soap and hot water, maybe vinegar to soften thing up. Then hang in garage, or covered outdoor place (PNWer here too, no sun till june <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> ) and let it air out for a while.<br><br>
Hoping the Charlie's does the trick for you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for that! I've been meaning to come back and post an update. So, I got the Charlie's soap, and I washed the sheets 4 times (each with a pre-wash, so that was 8 "doses" of Charlie's.) The sheets *still* smelled perfumey, so that's when I decided to stick my nose in the Charlie's soap. I never would have guessed it, but that darn stuff is scented!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
So then the sheets smelled like Charlie's, so perhaps the Charlie's did get out the fabric softener scent. I washed the sheets 3 more times in vinegar and my usual unscented 7th Generation stuff. I think the scent was finally beginning to come out.<br><br>
So I finally got them to where I thought they would be okay. I put them on the bed, and noticed that the room still smelled scented. I should have just ripped them right off the bed again, but I didn't have any more clean sheets (see, we really need these sheets!), and I was just going to trust the "natural-ness" of the Charlie's.<br><br>
Well, DD woke up that very night with a deep chest cough that developed into a full-blown asthma attack the next day. Her immune system got compromised from that, and now she has a bad cold (and I think I'm getting it now - perfect timing.) <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/angry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="angry"><br><br>
I washed the sheets several more times, and then finally gave up. I decided that even if I got all of the scent out of there, I could never put them back on the bed again and risk doing that to DD again. I do think that the scent would have eventually come out if I had kept on washing them, so all in all, I guess the Charlie's did get out the fabric softener.<br><br>
DH went to Costco last night and bought new sheets. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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charlies is uncented
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yeah - I posted about it in the diaper forum. So apparantly Charlie's doesn't have a scent *added* to it, but there's no doubt a scent there.
 

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Pilgrim, I am so like you with the uber-sensitive nose and chemical sensitivity! I like to buy most of our clothes from consignment and thrift shops, but I swear some of those places spray Febreeze all over things in addition to people's leftover fabric softener scents. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
I didn't have any luck with Charlie's either. I tried it for cloth diapers, but it did not remove stink from fleece.<br><br>
I've had some luck with lots of vinegar. The fabric softener might be coating your washer (especially if front loader) and dryer. Run an empty load in your washer with like a quart to gallon of vinegar, then rinse until you're not getting any suds. Spray and wipe the inside of your dryer with vinegar.<br><br>
I hope your DD is feeling better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for that! That's a good idea to run an empty load w/ a gallon of vinegar and to wipe the washer & dryer with the vinegar! Because it does smell perfumey in there. The bag of Charlie's says that it washes your washer for you (and instructs you to wash a load with double the dose of Charlie's and some old rags as a way to clean softener residues from the machine.) But my machine just smells like Charlie's now. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
DD is doing better now. She was acute over the weekend (asthma), and now is settling into what looks like a regular cold. I think her homeopathy is bringing her quickly out of it. Thanks for asking!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well I must say - I was quite pleasantly surprised today. Taylor from Charlie's actually PMd me here and offered to help me troubleshoot. In this day and age, it was just very nice to have such great customer service! I still don't know if I can make it work, but at least I have some things to try. And, he refunded my money and is sending me the liquid to try. It was just very nice to be treated more than fairly here. And today my DH came home with our pictures from Sears, and told me the lady was actually yelling at him! what a contrast!<br><br>
I'll be sure to come back here and post again when I have more results.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> AWESOME to hear kudos for customer service, even for a product that didn't work for <i>you.</i><br><br>
I hope you get this all worked out, and are able to save the sheets.<br><br>
ATM, I have ONE set for our bed that has not pilled to the point I cannot stand to touch them, or does not keep popping off of DH's side of the mattress in the middle of the night <i>(how does he <b>do</b> that anyway?!?!)</i>
 
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