Getting white clothes really clean : LUSENET : Country Families : One Thread

This tip was on an e-mail I received. Feel free to post your tips too.

Whiter Whites

One tip that I have found to be extremely cost saving is to use Baking Soda in with the white laundry. I had found that I was bleaching the whites once a week and the fabrics were wearing out constantly. I now use bleach only once per month and the baking soda every week. It really works great! Joan B.

-- Melissa in SE Ohio (, May 28, 2002


Thanks Melissa! With Dave being a chef, I have to use alot of bleach for his work clothes and it does wear out the fabric. Wonder how much baking soda to add to the wash water?

-- Annie (, May 29, 2002.

It did not say.. I have not personally tried this, just read it last night. If I try it, I will use about 1/4 to 1/2 a cup to start.

-- Melissa in SE Ohio (, May 29, 2002.

I am willing to try it. Socks are our worst. They don't last long at all. It would be great to find something to help them last a little longer.

-- Joanie (, May 29, 2002.

I hope I don't sound like a commercial, but I've stopped using bleach for our laundry, and started using a product called "oxy-clean". It seems to be much easier on the fabric and the whites just sparkle. Now, bear in mind, whewn it comes to socks, especially mens, it won't take all the stain out. For hard stains, I pre-treat with simple green...seems to work pretty good.

-- Toni (, May 29, 2002.

Toni, Can I ask, what is simple green? Where can I get it? Thanks

-- Joanie (, May 29, 2002.

I may have to try the baking soda. The bleach actually seems to yellow our t-shirts somewhat, and I didn't care for the oxi-clean. I must be too picky, nothing seems to work! I have soaked in "Biz" overnight and then washed, and that seemed to do the best, but biz is so expensive I don't do it very often.

-- Christine in OK (, May 29, 2002.

Joanie, simple green is in most grocery stores in the Northwest. You can look in the cleaners aisle, or also the sutomotive aisle. It is a very strong cleaner that can take out set up blood if the clothing is wet and soaked overnight. Good luck finding it, it shouldn't be too hard.

-- Toni (, May 29, 2002.

Thanks Toni, I will try to remember to look for it.

-- Joanie (, May 29, 2002.

Simple Green can also be found in hardware stores. I tried some of the Oxi-clean and really wasn't terribly impressed especially considering how expensive it is.

I think I'll try adding 1/2 cup of baking soda to my wash and see how it works.

Wishing you enough.

-- Trevilians (, May 30, 2002.

Does anyone still use "bluing" for their white clothes? I can remember my gramma using it instead of bleach. Is it still available ?

-- Charleen in WNY (, May 31, 2002.

Simple Green and Oxy-Clean can also be found in warehouse stores like Costco. I have sort of solved the whites problem by simply buying more colored clothes....:-)

Glad to see this forum back, Melissa!

-- GT (, May 31, 2002.

Charleen, I used bluing bec I had read about its miracles, but must not have dissolved it enough before adding it to the load and ended up with a big ol' blue spot on son's teeshirt! Slowly, so slowly the blue stain is coming out. Oxy Clean is too expensive for me to say its a miracle, but it is more impressive when allowed to totally dissolved in warm to hot water and allowed to soak with clothes in the machine overnight. Not quite efficient if you've got 10 loads already backed up! Clorox does such a number on anything elastic and in our red clay, its not much help either. I've tried everything except that old fashioned soap that of course I can't think of the name right now, but people here know it really well. Begins with a p or f I think and I just can't find it here, have to order it online, which I haven't done yet. I have been told vinegar works wonders but I really hate the stinky stuff. Don't want to go around smelling like a pickle all day, maybe the smell washes out. My mother in law uses peroxide, which makes sense to me, just haven't used it yet. Good luck everyone!

-- Catfish (, June 01, 2002.

Blueing certainly should be dissolved(?) or diluted before putting in the laundry rinse. I have never used it in an automatic washer but my mom always used it in the old ringer rinse tub. I can still see her mixing it in a quatrr fruit jar full of hot water. Blueing just gives the whites a very, very faint tinge of blue which makes whites seem much whiter. It really works! But, it is temporary (unless you have a big blue blob :-) ) You have to re-blue often. WHen I was married in the 1970's there was a detergent called LaFrance which has blueing built right in. It still may be manufactured. A tip for moms with babies is to put automatic dishwashint soap in the diaper pail to keep the diapers white. I think it doesn't cause the rot to the fabric bleach does. I not sure how much would be used- -I wouldn't think much...

-- Mary Strotkamp (, June 02, 2002.

I LOVE Lafrance....Winn Dixie stores used to carry it locally but stopped about 4 months ago...Its a blueing agent and stain remover and was an absolute miracle worker. The only other place I ever found it was when I lived in the midwest---a small grocery store in Baker, MT carried it. If anyone knows of a place online to get it, please email me!!

-- Hope Stephens (, July 02, 2002.

This site has some interesting stuff about blueing: MrsStuartsBluing

-- Earthmama (, July 02, 2002.

My mother got me hooked on LaFrance, but now we can't seem to find it anywhere. She has 1 box left and found a phone number to call. If anyone knows of where to get it......PLEASE let me know. Thanks!!!

-- Andrea Miller (, July 24, 2002.

Andrea and Hope, It is interesting that I just tried to call the Dial Company to see why I can't find La France in the store where I purchased two boxes months ago. At this hour there was no answer but I will call the 800 number on the box in the morning. I love LaFrance and will be sad if it is no longer being made. I plan to try the Simple Green. It works wonders on my Llyod Flanders wicker furniture. Marilyn, South Carolina

-- marilyn (, July 25, 2002.

we are looking for lafrance in texas, ohio and michigan if anyone knows where to got it please let me know . or if you have a 500 number we can call thanks

-- judi in texas (, August 13, 2002.

If someone have a 800 number for LaFrance please e-mail it to me. This product was the best. My mom used it when I was a child. Our whites remained white. I have been an RN almost 30 yrs and this product kept my uniforms looking store new. Piggly Wiggly stop carrying it about 3-4 months....Thanks

-- Linda Argrow (, August 14, 2002.

I have used LaFrance Bluing for 40 years. I will not wash white clothes without it. Everyone always comments on my white clothes, especially white tennis shoes. Will not use bleach on anything with elastic in it. About 3 months ago my grocery store stopped carrying it and I asked the manager to check on it. He could not find anything out about it and is not able to order it. If anyone finds out anything about LaFrance, please send the information to Glennis at Thank you.

-- (, August 15, 2002.

I'm one of those people desperatly seeking La France! Can't imagine doing whites or brights without it, but the stores here just stopped carrying it. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

-- BETH (LIZA_BW@YAHOO.COM), August 26, 2002.

Just got off the phone with theDial Corp. (1-800-457-8739). I just emptied my last box of LaFrance!! The company that made this product went out of business in November and Dial corp. said it happened so quickly they had no time to even stockpile extras. They are working on getting another factory to make it, but so far it's slow going. They sent me coupons for Borateem but I stillwant my LaFrance!!

-- Bianca B. McNulty (, August 28, 2002.

I have been trying to find LaFrance for my grandmother. If anyone hears that the stores are carrying it again, please e-mail me.

-- Mary (, September 06, 2002.

LaFrance is the best product for whites! If anyone knows where to get it please email me.

-- Chris Farrell (, September 11, 2002.

My mom is 87 and desperately seeking LaFrance too. She has tried the liquid stuff and hates it! I too am seeking any source at this point and hope that Dial gets it together real soon. It is so odd that companies spend millions trying to get someone to buy something new, and here is a product that is wanted and needed in powder form and noone else makes it!! Helloooo corporate America...wake up!!

-- Al in SE Michigan (, September 13, 2002.

I just emailed Dial to ask about LaFrance too. If enough people call or email maybe they'll get with the program. My roommate and I both love it. If anyone hears anything, email me too.


-- Rose Johnson (, September 14, 2002.

Try this

-- T. F. (, September 27, 2002.

I, too, have been desperately seeking La France. All stores are completely out in the 50 mile radius I have checked. Anyone finding its new whereabouts, please let us know. I have tried Mrs. Stewart's, however, it is really not the same. Oxy clean is o.k. but not as effective. So glad to hear others love it as much as I do. Thanks for all your postings.

-- Leafie Dempsey (, September 27, 2002.

I too have been an avid user of LaFrance for 30+ years and my mother has also. We have not been able to find it anywhere. I started to use washing soda by Arm and Hammar and it is okay, but not like the LaFrance product. So if anyone hears anything, please e-mail me. I will also e-mail the Dial Corp. regarding LaFrance.

-- Carol Bernath (, September 28, 2002.

I too am seaking LaFrance and have been unable to locate it. It is the best thing for football uniforms......if anyone hears when/if Dial is going to get it back in our stores please let me know.

-- Jenni Earle (, October 11, 2002.

I was searching for LaFrance for my mom (age 85) as it also disappeared off Kroger's & Walmart's shelves a short time ago in Ark.& the store manager told her they couldn't get it anymore. I always bought some when I visited her as it was almost impossibe to find in AL where I live. I plan to call/email Dial Corp. and if we make this a campaign, Corporate Dial just may get the gears going to find a replacement company to start LaFrance back to the store shelves!

-- maure lee (, October 11, 2002.

Thanks for the tip. Do you use approximately one half cup to a wash load? Shoud you find a product similar to LaFance please let me know. Thank you terri

-- terri stevens (, October 14, 2002.

I have been checking out for substitutes for LaFrance and have found nothing except the liquid Mrs. Stewarts which is harder to use.

Dial Corp who (was?) distributing LaFrance has no information about the product on their website now, & could not find any references to LaFrance in their site search engine or archives either. You can email Dial Corp or obtain toll-free numbers from their website: All LaFrance lovers need to contact this company & hopefully they will start remanufacturing the product.

-- maure lee (, October 19, 2002.

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