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How to Get White Clothes Whiter: Laundry Stripping Directions and Recipe

Updated: Jun 27

Keeping white clothing white has been a challenge in my household. In fact, I often avoid buying white clothes because I know it will be dingy soon. Emmaline doesn’t have that problem. She has a recipe that keeps new whites from ever becoming dingy and breathes new life into your old whites. This saves you money as your clothes will wear out before they ever become dingy.

The best place to soak the clothing is in the bathtub. (It could be done in a washing machine if it had a soak cycle and was not a high-efficiency machine.)


  • 1 cup borax

  • 1 cup washing soda

  • 1/4 cup citrus acid

  • 1 cup white vinegar

  • 1 cup hydrogen peroxide

  • 1/2 cup Dawn dish soap

First fill the tub with 3-4 inches of the hottest water that will come out of your tap.

Add 1 cup of borax, 1 cup of washing soda (This can be difficult to find but it is easy to make from baking soda.), 1/4 cup of citric acid, 1 cup of white vinegar, 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide and 1/2 cup of Dawn dish soap. Stir it all together. Add your whites.

Leave the whites in a minimum of 2 hours up to 8 hours or more. If the water looks excessively dirty you might want to go for a second round like I did. This works better for maintaining the whiteness of new clothes but the imbedded dirt of old dingy clothes will be greatly reduced as well.

After 1st Soaking

After 2nd Soaking

Wash with hot water in the washing machine and dry as you usually do.

Repeat this process once every 3 months. Emmaline uses the season change as a good reminder.

As a bonus, the solution does a great job of cleaning the bathtub and jets when the laundry is done.

Whiter Whites Before and After

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