How to Hand Wash Clothes for Homestead Living

Want to know how to hand wash clothes? If you want to add some homesteading skills you can use everyday, then find out how to wash clothes by hand. It’s a great way to conserve energy and also save money.

How to Hand Wash Clothes for Homestead Living

With all the modern technology around us I’m sure some of you may not know how to do some common household chores without help. That’s fine. It’s not your fault but if you don’t do anything about it that’s where you may have a problem.

Back in the olden days when washing machines don’t exist, people just wash their clothes by hand. If you want to save money and energy, then try to learn this homesteading skill. Believe me, it’s not difficult at all, even a kid can do it. So don’t be threatened, just follow this super easy tutorial on how to wash clothes by hand.

What you’ll need to hand wash clothes:

  • clean sink or laundry tub
  • water (the right temperature)
  • mild detergent
  • clean towels
  • hangers
  • outdoor clothesline (optional)

Step 1


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Clean the area you’ll be using to wash your clothes. This is essential to avoid getting any unwanted stains or dirt to your clothes.

Step 2


If you’re washing the clothes for the first time, check and follow the instructions on the label of your clothes. Make sure that you’re using the right water temperature.

TIP: If the label is unreadable, it would be safe to use lukewarm water. Also as a general rule, wash sweaters in cold water to avoid shrinking.

Having trouble reading the label?

Check out this Fabric Care Cheat Sheet to decode the label, and read more about washing & drying all different kinds of fabric. (Click Here to Read More!)

Check out How to Hand Wash Clothes for Homestead Living at out How to Hand Wash Clothes for Homestead Living at

This awesome infographic is from, click here for further details about each fabric.

Step 3


Separate the whites from the colored.


For colored garments you’ll be washing for the first time, wash it alone just to test if the dye will bleed.

Step 4


Add your detergent. If you’re using a laundry tub, you can let the clothes soak for about 30 minutes.

Step 5


Swish the clothes for a few minutes. If you’re washing a load in a laundry tub, you can spin the clothes by hand and gently squeeze it a bit too. Remember the parts of the clothing that are “dirtier” like the collars and arm pits.


TIP: If there’s a stain in your clothes, put a small amount of detergent directly and rub it gently with your fingers.

Step 6


Rinse thoroughly.

Step 7


Remove excess water from your clothes. You can roll and press it in a towel to avoid distorting its shape.

Step 8


If you have access to a clothesline, hang it to dry naturally. You can check out how to dry clothes with a clothesline or drying rack here.

Tips for Wool and Cashmere:


Only wash these kinds of fabrics with cold or lukewarm water. Since it has a high chance of shrinking, never wring or twist it to remove excess water. When drying, do not use a dryer or hang it to dry, just lay it out flat.

Tips for Silk:


Use warm water when washing clothing with silk fabric. Since this fabric won’t shrink, you can just hang them to dry. Get more tips on silk care here.

If you want to see how to wash clothes by hand, you can watch this video tutorial from Howcast:

What do you think about this tutorial on hand washing clothes? Are you into homestead living and a sustainable lifestyle? Let us know in the comments section what your thoughts are on washing clothes by hand. Do you think you’re going to give it a try?

Have any homesteading projects you’d like to share? Share it with us an we’ll give it a try. We’d love to know what you think!

Love this? You’ll also like:

How to Dry Laundry Using a Drying Rack or Clothesline

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Originally posted on June 16, 2015 @ 2:20 AM



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