How To Make Natural Dryer Sheets

Natural dryer sheets are a simple, chemical-free, environmentally safe alternative to conventional dryer sheets. They make a great replacement for traditional, comercially produced fabric softeners and dryer sheets.

ingredients to make natural dryer sheets on a table

They help to keep your laundry soft and static free, they are very easy to make, and they are budget friendly as well.

When you make your own laundry products you can rest in confidence that you are significantly reducing your daily exposure to toxins.

Why You Should Use Natural Dryer Sheets

There are many compelling reasons to replace the traditional, comercially produced dryer sheets and fabric softeners in your laundry room with natural dryer sheets.

But, for me, there is no reason more compelling than the fact that conventional laundry products contain toxic chemicals. These chemicals are known carcinogens, and they have been linked to asthma, skin irritations, allergies, and endocrine system disruption.

You won’t see these ingredients listed on conventional laundry products, or any cleaning produt, for your review. Companies that produce these products are not required by law to disclose the ingredients contained in them.

Additionally, conventional dryer sheets are made from a non-biodegradable, single use material that contains microplastics.

In other words, used dryer sheets will remain in the earth’s environment forever.

For me, it seems silly to use a product that is harmful to both myself, and the gorgeous planet that I call home, when there is a simple, inexpensive, easy to make alternative readily available to me.

Ingredients And Supplies Needed For This Product

You can make natural dryer sheets with just 2 ingredients. It will take more ingredients if you choose to add essential oils to your blend.

ingredients to make a diy laundry product on a table

The cost to make a batch of homemade dryer sheets is just 3 cents a piece. That calculation does not include any added essential oils.

And it also does not calculate the cost of the material that you will use to make your dryer sheets. The material that you use will likely be t-shirts, or some other old clothing, that you are planning to dispose of anyway.

And it’s going to be used for a measure of time that is difficult to predict. Making it hard to figure it into the overall cost.

The point is … this diy cleaning product is very inexpensive to make.

Supplies Needed To Make This Product

  • QUART JAR – A quart size canning jar works well as a vessel to hold your handmade dryer sheets. Be sure that it has a plastic lid, as the vinegar used in the solution for this product will cause a metal lid to rust. However, you can use any non-metal container that has a secure lid to make this product.
  • CLOTH – I find that old t-shirts are the perfect choice for making these dryer sheets. But you can use any material you have, that you are about to dispose of, and would like to repurpose. You can also purchase some inexpensive washcloths to make this product. I don’t advise that route, as it seems counterproductive to the environmentally friendly aspect of making your own dryer sheets.

Ingredients Needed To Make This Product

  • VINEGAR – Plain white vinegar is used to make this product. The scent of the vinegar will dissipate in the dryer. It will not come through on your clean laundry.
  • WATER – You can boil water from your tap to make this product. Or you can buy distilled water. Obviously, it is more economical to use water from your tap.
  • ESSENTAIL OIL – 100% pure essential oil can be used to provide a bit of scent to your dryer sheets. However, the scent will not come through in your clean laundry. Therefore, it seems a wasteful addition, in my opinion.

How To Make Natural Dryer Sheets

Natural dryer sheets couldn’t be easier to make. The most time consuming part is cutting up the fabric you’re going to use for them.

stack of cut fabric with scissors on a table

But that is not done every time you make them. As a matter of fact, that is not done most times that you make them. So, it’s not really a consideration in the big scheme of how convenient they are to put together.

The first step to making your own batch of dryer sheets is cutting up the fabric. You can use any absorbent, ready to be repurposed material you have laying around the house to make them.

I prefer t-shirts to other materials, but old cloth napkins and towels work really well too.

Cut your material into a decent size square. At least 10″ x 10″, a little larger if you can.

Once your material is ready to go, you’ll pour the vinegar and water into the quart jar. If you are adding essential oil, now is the time to do it.

Then place the lid on the jar and shake the solution well. Next, remove the lid and submerge the material into the liquid. It works best to do this one piece of material at a time.

And that’s it folks … you’ve made yourself a batch of handmade dryer sheets!

How To Use Natural Dryer Sheets

When you’re ready to use your natural dryer sheets, you’ll simply remove them from the jar and wring any excess liquid from them.

handmade natural dryer sheets in a jar on a table

Then you’ll toss one or two of them in the dryer, with your wet laundry, and run the dryer cycle as you normally would.

If you pair your diy dryer sheets with wool dryer balls, it will exponentially contribute to the softness and freshness of your clean laundry. It will also double the ability of these handmade products to produce static-free clothing.

This Natural Cleaning Product Is Better For The Environment

Your handmade natural dryer sheets will last as long as the fabric you’ve made them from holds up. When the fabric starts to wear thin, it is time to replace it with new cloth.

ingredients for natural dryer sheets on a table

As discussed earlier in this post, this makes this diy cleaning product exponentially more environmentally friendly than conventional dryer sheets.

Combine that with the natural, chemical-free ingredients used to make them and you’ve got a real win, both for yourself and for the environment. 

Other Ways To Soften Your Laundry

There are additional steps you can take to soften your laundry naturally, if you feel like your natural dryer sheets are not producing the results you would like to have.

top view of a jar of handmade natural dryer sheets

Each of them is simple, inexpensive, and easy to do. Here’s a list of them for you …

  • Dry synthetic fabrics separate from natural fabrics. Synthetic fabric contributes to static cling in the dryer.
  • Line dry your clothes whenever you can, and you won’t have to worry about static cling at all.
  • Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of white vinegar to the fabric softener container in your washer.
  • Add 1/3 cup of table salt or baking soda to the wash cycle of your laundry. Or make your own simple diy laundry powder, which contains both of these ingredients.
pinnable image for natural dryer sheets

If you try this recipe and love it, please give it 5 stars! It supports my work more than you may realize, and I appreciate that a great deal!

You can also show your support by tagging me on Facebook @sustainableslowliving and/or Instagram @slowlivingbydianegail when you post a pic of your finished project.

ingredients to make natural dryer sheets on a table


Prep Time: 15 minutes
Active Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: .48

Natural dryer sheets are a simple, chemical-free, environmentally safe alternative to conventional dryer sheets. They make a great replacement for traditional, comercially produced fabric softeners and dryer sheets.


  • 1 1/2 c white vinegar
  • 1/2 c water, boiled or distilled
  • essential oil, 100% pure, (optional)


  • fabric, cut 10"-12" squares out of repurposeable t-shirts, cloth napkins, or towels
  • canning jar, quart size, plastic lid


  1. Pour vinegar, water, and essential oil (if using it) into the canning jar.
  2. Place the lid on the jar and shake the contents well.
  3. Remove the lid and submerge the fabric squares in the liquid one at a time, soaking them well.
  4. Place the lid back on the jar and store it by your dryer.
  5. Squeeze the excess liquid out of 1-2 fabric squares and place in the dryer before you start the dry cycle, just as you would a conventional dryer sheet.

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