Can this ice cube dryer trick really replace ironing?

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When it comes to doing laundry, I’m pretty quick to toss a load in the washing machine. Remembering to transfer it to the dryer when the wash is done is also no biggie. But finding the motivation to fold and put the laundry away afterward? That’s a different story.

Oftentimes, I’ll start the dryer cycle and then become distracted by something else, causing hours to pass before I take the clothes out of the machine and put them away. This results in clean but wrinkled clothes that need to be ironed, a chore I loathe.

While newer dryers often have steam settings, there’s a laundry hack you can try even if you don’t have the latest and greatest dryer. If all goes well, you won’t ever have to iron clothes again. The hack only requires ice.

How The Ice Cube Hack Works

The idea behind the hack is that by simply tossing several ice cubes into the dryer with wrinkled laundry, you’ll end up with wrinkle-free, ready-to-wear clothes. Supposedly, the heat of the dryer paired with the ice will steam the creases right out, making it ideal for those times when you’re in a rush to get out the door. So does this actually work? I decided to find out.

According to laundry experts, this hack works best on a few items of cotton clothes. Jeans and heavy fabrics reportedly won’t work. And a full load of laundry is too much for the ice cube hack to handle.

The Result?

So to test it out, I loaded a few wrinkled but clean pieces of clothing from my last load of laundry and put them in the dryer on high, along with three ice cubes. After eight minutes, my dryer automatically turned off due to the dryness sensor. I checked on my clothes. There were wet spots in addition to the wrinkling. Not ideal.

I set the dryer again. After 10 more minutes, I took the clothes out. This time, there were no wet spots and the clothes were less wrinkled, although not in the meticulous way they would look if they had been ironed.

This striped shirt went from super-wrinkled to far less wrinkled:

Margeaux Klein

These thicker sweatpants were slightly improved:

Margeaux Klein

I also tried the ice cube trick on a pillowcase because there’s nothing more annoying than ironing linens. But the results were ever so slight:

Margeaux Klein

Overall, my clothing and pillowcase did come out somewhat less wrinkled after drying them for about 20 minutes on high with ice cubes. Considering I didn’t have to expend any effort, I’d say that this hack was a win.

Granted, I won’t be throwing out my iron any time soon because de-wrinkling an entire load of laundry this way would take all day, and it yields far from a perfect result. But for occasions when I’m in a hurry and need to de-wrinkle a cotton shirt fast, this hack could come in handy.

Alternatives To The Ice Cube Hack

No ice? Alternatively, you could mist your clothes with a water bottle and put them back in the dryer, or even put a damp washcloth in with your clothes to create the same steam effect.

Do you avoid ironing your clothes, too?

Cleaning & Organization, Home
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About the Author
Margeaux Baulch Klein
Margeaux Baulch Klein is a freelance writer and digital strategist based in Los Angeles. She has written for publications like the Huffington Post, New York Daily News, Bustle, and HelloGiggles, among others.

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