How to Brighten White Sheets


After a while white sheets may become dingy and grayed from continual washing and wear. You can make your sheets look like new again with a few laundry tricks.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice will help brighten and freshen your sheets without any harsh chemicals. Apartment Therapy suggests adding a half a cup of lemon juice to the wash along with your regular detergent. You can also soak your whites in boiling water witha sliced lemon.

Soaking Solution

This soaking solution comes from One Good Thing. The author, Jillee, suggests mixing one cup of laundry detergent, one cup of powdered dishwasher detergent, one cup of bleach and half a cup of borax in enough extremely hot water to cover the white articles. Allow the white items to soak for a few hours and then wash them in a regular cycle. You can soak the sheets in large buckets, or right in the washing machine basin.

Removing Residue

Some items can lose their brilliance just from routine washing. If soap continues to build up without being thoroughly rinsed, it can make white items look gray and dingy. Try running these items through your wash several times with no soap. Tossing in some baking soda will also help remove residues.

Hydrogen Peroxide

TipNut suggests soaking your clothes in a hydrogen peroxide solution. Use ½ cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide for every quart of cold water. Soak your garments or linens overnight and then wash as normal. Alternatively, you can put hydrogen peroxide directly into the rinse cycle.


While drying clothes in the sun will cause your bright colored clothes to fade, it will also bleach out your whites. Hang your white sheets to dry in direct sunshine for a very natural whitener and brightener.


Add a ½ a cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle. The vinegar will help remove yellow dinginess from white sheets. Do not worry about the strong vinegar smell, it will dissipate quickly.

Natural body oils and general wear and tear will turn white sheets to yellow and gray over time. Use these helpful methods to help restore your well used sheets to their former brand new brilliance.

Do you have any tried and true laundry whitening tips to share?

Image: White Sheets by Mary Madigan


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