It’s That Time Of Year Again!
Thanksgiving is over. You’ve survived the marathon cooking, inevitable turkey coma, overeating of pies, and Black Friday shopping. You’re now ready to face the season head-on with the confidence built from past years’ successes, and you’ve stockpiled tape and wrapping paper. You’ve dusted off your favorite holiday sweaters and have your playlists broken in. Thanksgiving break is over and you are ready for the few weeks until Christmas. You tackle Monday morning with eagerness, fortified with at least three cups of coffee. As you pull on your favorite holiday dress you realize there was something you forgot to plan for: static cling.
It is never inspiring to have to ground yourself with a lightning rod while getting dressed in the winter. The dry air not only wreaks havoc with your skin but also with your clothes. So much static electricity that could power up all the Christmas decorations in Whoville. Instead, it has found residence in your garments. It may have been fun as a child to rub your hair so it stuck up like a troll’s hairdo, but for the office? I don’t rock that look. And it scares away my students.
If you have found yourself hosting a static cling poltergeist, here are some tips on how to deal with the season’s gremlin. And don’t worry, you won’t need a lightning rod and grounding wire.
1. Hang Your Clothes To Dry.
Take your clothes from the dryer while they are still damp. Heck, why not just skip the dryer and save some money and hang them right from the washer? Tumbling around in the dryer will make the static cling worse.
2. Use Fabric Softener.
There are so many options for this. You can use the liquid that goes in the washer. You can use store-bought dryer sheets. You can even make your own. I have done all three in my lifetime. I didn’t mind making my own, but my family claimed I used too much vinegar so now I am using store-bought until I can perfect the recipe for the homemade version. I would like to have a clever reason as to why I don’t use the liquid fabric softener that you add to the wash but the truth is, I always forget when it is time to put it in.
3. Pickle It.
Well, maybe not make pickles, but do use vinegar. Simply add about a cup of white vinegar to your rinse cycle. Again, this is not effective if you forget to add it in at the proper time. Not that I would ever do that. Nope.
4. Just Add Water.
Use a humidifier in your home. It is good for so many reasons. One of them is to help control the static electricity in your environment. The dryer the air, the more static you will have. Just don’t overdo it by having indoor water fights in the name of fighting static cling. Again, not that I would ever do that. Nope.
5.“Baaaaaa—ll” It Up.
Wool balls are a great way to combat static cling. If you don’t have wool hanging around because your sheep need shearing and you haven’t had time because you’ve been too busy masquerading as a lightning rod, then try tennis balls. If the balls by themselves don’t do the trick, add a little vinegar in with them. The combination of the two will likely do the trick.
6. Set It Then Forget It
Here is a tip that might make you think I’ve been inhaling too much vinegar fumes. On rayon or sheer material, try using makeup setting spray. I recently tried this when a bout of horrible static cling threatened the cute outfit I was wearing. Of course, I had no static guard spray and didn’t have time to try any of the above treatments. I didn’t even have time to change my outfit. And wouldn’t you know that I was out of hairspray? So I grabbed my make up setting spray and used it on the skirt of my garment. No, I didn’t try a cute little sample to make sure it didn’t stain or damage the material. This was war. All-out war. I sprayed my skirt liberally (liberally meaning I doused the snot out of the static cling). It worked! I brought the bottle with me to work, but I never needed to reapply. Who knew?
Don’t be mocked by static cling. It is that time of year where we are overrun with holiday greetings, shopping, yet more eating of goodies, and feeling like you harness enough natural power to light up the aurora borealis. Don’t let static cling restrain your movements. Free your legs, your arms, your hair—whatever is being held captive by static. And for goodness sake, put that lightning rod back where you found it. You won’t be needing it anymore.