Wool Dryer Balls - What is the purpose?

I have been making wool dryer balls for a while now. Lots of people have questions about wool dryer balls, and I hope to answer some of them here!

What is the purpose of wool dryer balls?
Wool dryer balls are a 100% natural alternative to those plastic spiky dryer balls that you can buy. They are also an alternative to chemical-filled fabric softener or dryer sheets. Wool dryer balls shorten drying time by circulating air into your load of laundry and soaking up excess water. The more dryer balls that you use, the more time and energy you will save. They also reduce static although they may not completely eliminate it.

Do they REALLY work?
YES! I promise that they work. I have 9 in my dryer currently (I had 12, but they have a way of not making it back to the dryer when you have a 2 year old) and wouldn't keep them in there if they didn't work.The more dryer balls the better, but even 2 will make a small difference in your drying time and static.

Why do they cost so much?
I try to keep the price on mine as low as possible, but I have seen dryer balls sell for over $10 EACH. (Mine are 2/$10 or 4/$20)  The simple answer is that wool is expensive but it's very worth it if you factor in shortened drying time and money saved on dryer sheets or fabric softener.

How long will wool dryer balls last?
They will last a very long time. Many people use the same dryer balls for years. If they get dirty at all you can simply hand wash them and throw them back into the dryer, simple! Wool dryer balls will get pills on them, but you can shave them if you want. They don't "shed" onto your clothes however so unless the pilling really bothers you it is fine to just leave them. Mine have been felted 3 times and they will not fall apart even with daily use.

Are they safe for cloth diapers?
Yes, wool dryer balls are very commonly used among those who cloth diaper! Fabric softeners and dryer sheets are not safe for use with cloth diapers so wool dryer balls are a natural choice. Both Meagan and myself use these on our diapers. I line dry my covers and I usually line dry my pockets but I have found that inserts and anything hemp do much better in the dryer. Using dryer balls on diapers is not only safe but usually one of the best ways to save energy because diaper laundry (at least in our house) is typically a small load.

What about wool allergies?
I can't guarantee anything about wool allergies, but everything I have ever researched has said that those with wool allergies do fine using wool dryer balls. The wool never comes into direct contact with your skin so many people use wool dryer balls with no problem. I definitely recommend doing your own research.

Will the colors bleed? Can wool dryer balls be scented?
I have lots of different colors on my dryer balls and they do not bleed. No one who has ever used my dryer balls has reported this issue to me either. However if you are really concerned, I can use completely un-dyed wool. I do not recommend scenting dryer balls, particularly for diaper laundry. However if you prefer scenting I can use 100% natural essential oils to do so. Many people use scented dryer balls and they are completely safe, I just prefer no scent for myself. If you are switching from using dryer sheets it may be an easier transition to use scented dryer balls. However it is good to remember that the scent will not last forever!

I hope this answers any questions that anyone may have about wool dryer balls. If not, feel free to leave a comment or contact me on facebook! Once I have enough fans (I haven't decided on an exact number yet!) I will be having a giveaway on my facebook fanpage so be sure to check it out.


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