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In which we discuss how to do laundry, what preshrunk means, and recruit Where's Waldo and Neil DeGrasse Tyson to figure out HOW THE HECK YOU WASH SHIRTS WITH WHITE STRIPES.

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Shout Color-Catchers:

How to Fix a Striped-Shirt Tragedy:

What Laundry Tag Symbols Mean:

Hosted and co-written:
Emma Mills

Co-written, directed, and edited by:
T. Michael (Mike) Martin
(Mike is also a Young Adult novelist. His book, THE END GAMES, is available at all online booksellers, including Amazon:

Executive Producers:
Hank and John Green

Emma: Hey! So let's talk laundry! The bare essentials:
    1. laundry
    2. a washer and dryer, unless you want to hand wash, in which case more power to you.
    3. detergent, which can be liquid or powder, and
    4. optional, if you're interested, is bleach to wash things like all white shirts, or fabric softener if you want to reduce static cling and make your fabrics feel a little softer.
Personally, I don't use fabric softener because my dermatologist told me it irritates my skin, and that is a thing that can happen. That was probably a little bit personal, but I feel like you and I are on this level! I feel like we're in a really good place right now. I hope yo- I hope you feel the same way (laughs).

So the big question: Should you separate your laundry into whites and coloreds, this is actually kind of a controversial topic. Some people say "yes, always" some people say "there's not enough hours in the day." The idea behind separating your laundry is to prevent color transference. Basically, if you put some reds in with some whites, you might get a whole lot of unintentional pinks, which can lead to major frowny face emoji.

So do you want to make your life a little bit easier? You can separate these things out! In general, you're going to want to wash colors in cold water, and whites in hot water, but if you absolutely cannot separate your laundry, or refuse to with every fiber of your being, then you can going ahead and throw all that stuff in cold water and hope for the best.

What about shirts with white stripes? What about shirts with white stripes? Obviously, Waldo has been making it work for some time now, so there must be a solution to this problem. I think there are a few different options:

Number one: You could dry clean. If you care that much. Number two: You could hand wash. But number three, which is I think what most people, striped-shirt fanatics, opt for is to just go ahead and throw it in with the color wash. And if you're really worried, you could add something like a Shout color catcher - links in the description - that's supposed to help absorb some of the dyes if the dye were to run.

If you do experience a striped-shirt tragedy, there are ways to reverse that, I'm going to put a Link (Legend of Zelda character onscreen), another Link (from Rhett and Link, onscreen), in the description below.

Now, as you sort out your clothes, make sure you empty out your pockets - an ink pen busting open in the washing machine is not an ideal situation - and unless your criminal name is Heisenberg, you don't want to launder your money. That is apparently a Breaking Bad reference, which Mike said that I had to say, or he would not shoot this video.

Now, it's important to note, when it comes to washing, that some fabrics require different treatment than other fabrics. In general, check the tag! The tag is your friend, the tag will tell you what to do. There's all kinds of text, and also, some symbols, on the tag, that will tell you how you should wash that kind of fabric.

Okay, so you got your laundry ready to go, your washing machine might ask you to set how much water to be added to the machine based on how much laundry you put in there; in general, use your judgment - what do you think is small, medium, or large, etc. - but we would recommend not filling the laundry machine more than 80%.

Before your drop your clothes in, you could let a little water come into the machine, add in your detergent, let that mix together a little bit, and then put your clothes in. Set a timer so your know when your laundry is finished.

Part two: drying. Okay, so your laundry is washed, and now you need to dry it. Some clothes, especially those made of moisture-wicking fabrics, don't need to be dried, so you can just do ahead and put them up on a hanger, along with any clothes that you really don't want to have shrink in a dryer.

Side-note: pre-shrunk does not mean unshrinkable, it just means that in the process of manufacturing, the fabric was shrunk a little bit, but it doesn't mean that it's not capable of being shrunk more later on.

So in general, consult the tag - once more - about how the clothes should be dried, the tag is your friend, the tag will tell you what's right. To minimize shrinking, you can use the low-heat settings on your drier, this is things like delicate, tumble dry low, or just plain old tumble dry, which is the heat-free setting. My particular favorite is Tumblr dry, where I look at GIFs of Sherlock while my clothes are drying!

Check the lint trap before and after your clothes dry, it's kind of gross to pull someone else's fuzz out of the machine, but apparently, it's a fire hazard, so you're going to want to do that. And when your clothes are done, make sure you pull out your own fuzz! The next person who dries their stuff will shed a silent tear in thank you, and somewhere in the universe, a narwhal will get its wings.

Put items in the dryer a few at a time, otherwise they clump together, and that'll slow down drying, in general, I would recommend not filling the machine more than 75%. When your clothes are done drying, pull them out ASAP and either fold them or hang them up to prevent unnecessary wrinkling.

And that's the lowdown on laundry, if you have any laundry tips, tricks, questions, or elaborations, please leave them for us in the comments section below, in the meantime, catchphrase!


Emma: Um, so I got a shirt for Christmas from my parents, one year, several years back, that I thought was very cute. I threw it in the wash, I did not read the tag, and the shirt shrunk to like baby doll size. It shrunk so small, and of course I couldn't wear it, and it was a lesson to always read the tag, the tag is your friend, the tag will always tell you what is right!

Mike: When I was a freshman in college, I was dating this girl, and I said, "Oh, I've got to do laundry, I have like no clean socks", and she said, "Why don't you go ahead and do it?" and I said, "I don't know how! My mom's always done it!" And the girl said, "That is so sexist." And she broke up with me.

But then she had a maths test the next day, and she was like, "Bye, I'm out of here", and I was like, "give me my calculator back", and she said, "You're really going to be like this?" And I was like, "Take my calculator!"

Emma: (laughing) I'm sorry!