I am so, so, so tired of buying things that instantly fall apart. I'll absolutely pay higher prices to avoid that. The worst is when you opt for higher prices, and the damn thing still falls apart after only a few uses. Future landfill.
In my experience, socks are very prone to this syndrome. As holes started to appear in the last batch of socks I bought, I started looking online for a better alternative. The only thing we can buy locally is crap, and of course made in Bangladesh, Cambodia, or China. Crap made in China that needs constant replacing comes with a mighty big carbon footprint.
There are many places online to buy socks. Why did I choose the Great Canadian Sox Shop?
* They have a huge selection.
* Most of their products are made in Canada. Actually in Toronto!
* They are a family-run business. I don't know what their labour practices are, but they must treat their 40 employees better than the Asian sweatshops do.
* They have a loyalty program. (Not a deciding factor, but a plus.)
* They have an option to ship with minimal packaging.
* For woolen socks, they follow the Responsible Wool Standards.
* And most importantly, everything I've purchased from them has been very high quality. On their own brand, J. B. Fields, they actually have a no-risk guarantee, good for a full year.
My first purchase included an eye-catching postcard telling me I was supporting a small, family-run, Canadian business, plus a little "how to care for your socks" piece. It said, "Socks last longer if you don't put them in the dryer." I decided to try that. I purchased a second drying rack, and started hanging the socks to dry. And guess what? My electricity bill went down!
(This drying rack is stainless steel, comes already assembled, folds flat, and is both sturdy and lightweight. If you're into laundry, this may be your new favourite thing.)
The lasting longer if you don't put it in the dryer is extrapolable to all clothes, BTW.
I have some shirts that I do put in the dryer and other identical except for colour shirts that I don't put in the dryer for Reasons. I get about 2 years out of the dryer shirts and 10 years out of the non-dryer shirts.
If I had the space, I'd probably air-dry everything (except maybe towels - the few times I've air-dryed towels they became super stiff). I use a tree-style dryer rack so it has a small footprint, but even then I have to move it around depending on what I'm doing.
Oh yes, absolutely! I put shirts in the dryer for 5 minutes to help de-wrinkle, then hang to dry.
Jeans, towels, sheets, underwear, and socks I have always dried because of stiffness and space considerations. I never thought of excluding socks, but they took forever to dry, so this is a triple win.
Thanks for bringing us another good resource. I'm constantly buying socks for J so will likely give this a try.
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