Inspired by this thread on shirt underarms, I’ve decided to create a thread to ask about the other laundry quagmire that’s been dogging me for years: stiff washcloths. I don’t remember this happening when I was growing up, but it’s possible my mother simply turned old washcloths into rags before they became stiff, or it’s possible she washed them more frequently than I wash mine and that makes the difference. Regardless, my wash cloths become hard and stiff over time, and laundering them, even with fabric softener, makes no difference.
Just as with the hard shirt underarms, I’ve tried every remedy out there on the internet, to no avail. I would think the stiffness is caused by soap scum and/or hard water deposits, so it should come out with an acidic cleaner, like vinegar, right? But I have given these wash cloths the deluxe treatment–we’re talking boiling in a mixture of vinegar and distilled water, then soaking in CLR, then washing with Borax added to the washing machine–and they come out of the dryer maybe slightly softened, but once they’ve air-dried after literally the first shower, they’re back to being rocks. What gives?