How Much Vinegar to Add to Laundry? Find Out Now!

If you’re looking for a way to make your clothes softer, brighter, and cleaner without resorting to chemical-laden products, vinegar might just be your new best friend. But how much vinegar should you add to your laundry for optimal results? That’s what we’re here to explore.

Why Vinegar is a Natural Laundry Wonder

Vinegar has been used for centuries as a natural cleaning agent, and it’s still one of the most versatile substances you can keep in your pantry. It’s cheap, readily available, and an environmentally-friendly alternative to many commercial cleaners, and it’s perfect for use in the laundry room. Here are just a few ways vinegar can help:

  • Softens clothes
  • Brightens colors
  • Eliminates odors
  • Refreshes fabric
  • Removes stains
  • Reduces static cling

But if you’re new to using vinegar in your laundry routine, it’s important to know how much to use.

How Much Vinegar to Add to Your Laundry

The amount of vinegar you should use in your laundry depends on a few factors, such as the size of your load and the type of washing machine you have. As a general rule, you can use anywhere from a teaspoon to a half cup of vinegar for each load of laundry.

Standard Washing Machines

If you have a standard washing machine, which typically holds around 12-16 pounds of laundry, you can use the following guidelines:

Laundry Load Size Amount of Vinegar
Small load 1/4 cup
Medium load 1/2 cup
Large load 3/4 cup

High-Efficiency Washing Machines

If you have a high-efficiency washing machine, which uses less water and detergent than a standard machine, you’ll need to adjust the amount of vinegar you use accordingly. Here are some general guidelines:

Laundry Load Size Amount of Vinegar
Small load 1 teaspoon
Medium load 2 teaspoons
Large load 1 tablespoon

Types of Vinegar for Laundry

Not all vinegar is created equal. While any type of vinegar will help clean and refresh your clothes, some are better suited to certain tasks than others.

White Vinegar

White vinegar is the most common type of vinegar used in the laundry room. It’s effective at removing stains, brightening colors, and eliminating odors, and it won’t leave any residue on your clothes. If you’re using vinegar for laundry for the first time, white vinegar is a good place to start.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a popular health tonic, but it’s also great for laundry. It’s particularly effective at removing mildew and mold from fabrics and can help freshen up your towels and bedding. Just be aware that apple cider vinegar can sometimes leave a faint smell on your clothes, so use it sparingly.

Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is another type of vinegar that can be used in laundry. However, it’s more expensive than white vinegar and typically used for culinary purposes.

Other Tips for Using Vinegar in Your Laundry

  • Don’t mix vinegar with chlorine bleach, as it can create toxic fumes.
  • If you’re concerned about the faint scent of vinegar on your clothes, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to the rinse cycle.
  • If you have particularly stubborn stains, you can pre-treat them with a mixture of vinegar and baking soda before washing as usual.
  • For an extra boost of softness, add a cup of white vinegar to the fabric softener dispenser of your washing machine.


If you’re looking for an easy, affordable, and eco-friendly way to improve your laundry routine, vinegar is an ideal choice. Whether you’re trying to freshen up stinky towels or remove stubborn stains, vinegar is a natural solution that really works. Just be sure to use the right amount, based on the size of your load and the type of washing machine you have, and experiment with different types of vinegar to find the one that works best for you.


Can I use too much vinegar in my laundry?

While vinegar is generally safe to use in the laundry, using too much can sometimes leave a vinegar smell on your clothes. Stick to the recommended amounts based on your load size and washing machine to avoid any issues.

Can I use vinegar and fabric softener together?

It’s generally not recommended to use both vinegar and fabric softener in the same load of laundry, as they can cancel each other out. Instead, use vinegar as a natural fabric softener and skip the commercial softeners altogether.

Can I use vinegar on all types of fabrics?

Vinegar is safe to use on most types of fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. However, it’s always best to test a small, inconspicuous area first to make sure there’s no adverse reaction.

Will vinegar bleach my clothes?

No, vinegar won’t bleach your clothes. While it’s acidic, it’s not strong enough to bleach the colors or whiteness of your clothes.

Can I use vinegar in a front-loading washing machine?

Yes, vinegar is safe to use in both front-loading and top-loading washing machines. Just be sure to follow the recommended amounts based on your machine type and load size.

What’s the best way to add vinegar to my laundry?

You can add vinegar to your laundry by pouring it directly into the washing machine during the rinse cycle, or by adding it to the fabric softener dispenser. Some people also recommend using vinegar in a pre-wash soak for heavily stained items.

What are the benefits of using vinegar in my laundry?

  • Softens clothes
  • Brightens colors
  • Eliminates odors
  • Refreshes fabric
  • Removes stains
  • Reduces static cling


1. “21 Surprising Uses for Vinegar – Country Living.” Country Living, 11 Mar. 2015,

2. “Using Vinegar as Fabric Softener – The Spruce.” The Spruce, 18 Feb. 2021,

3. “How to Use Vinegar in Laundry – Our Everyday Life.” Our Everyday Life, 27 Apr. 2018,

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