How do you pick your laundry hamper? You just pick one right off the shelf? Are you joking? That’s probably the reason you hate doing laundry so much that you put off doing it until the last minute. Buying a laundry hamper has evolved, darling. Get with the times! There is a science to buying laundry hampers now; maybe not Einstein science; but there are a few equations that need to be balanced before you purchase a hamper.
Equation one: a laundry hamper is no longer synonymous to “dirty, smelling, ugly box of stinking clothes”. The world of laundry has moved on from that. Now, laundry hampers are elegant pieces that make a strong statement of style even while doing the dirty work. Because they now come in an array of beautiful colors and designs, they can easily be placed anywhere in your house without causing you any embarrassment (still, keep it out of your living room, please, for goodness sake).
Equation two: one laundry hamper fits all, right? Wrong! One laundry hamper cannot fit all. There are different hampers for different spaces. For instance, if you have a room where you all keep your dirty laundry in your family; several mid-sized, labeled hampers with/without wheels placed close to your washing machine
will work better than one long hamper for everybody’s clothes.
Equation three: you think a hamper will mess up the colors of your clothes? Yeah, maybe in the 1920’s but not anymore. There are sectioned hampers which help you to separate your whites from your colored clothes, saving you the time, not to talk of the extra washing detergent
that would have been wasted in trying to get the colors straight—that is, if the color in question is merciful.
In the whole process of doing laundry: from sorting the dirty clothes to the actual washing, drying and ironing
, the laundry hamper has played a multi-faceted role, often being the object of choice for storing and moving clothes from one stage of laundry to the next. You really should have gotten one, like, yesterday.
Good news! There is something for everyone here just like a Santa Claus goody bag. From a housewife on a budget to the sophisticated business executive who can spare a few more bucks, everyone is entitled to a laundry hamper. So, if you want a hamper with all the bells and whistles, you should be looking at about $100 but if you just want a “good old” laundry hamper then with about $15, you’re covered. Please, don’t get us started on those cheap laundry hampers all over the place like viruses. Not only are they painfully ugly, they look wobbly, and not very useful. Don’t even think about trying them!
When shopping a great laundry hamper, you should look out for the following:
Let’s see how they affect the functioning of your laundry hamper.
Construction and Design
Essentially, laundry hampers can be made from canvas material, plastic, wood, wicker or rattan; plus, they usually come vented to keep the already bad smell from the dirty clothes from escalating. Of importance is the fact that lidless hampers do not guarantee enough ventilation to decrease odors because clothes at the bottom will still stink since they are not getting enough air. Wicker, rattan, porous canvas, and large-holed plastic hampers deliver best on a properly vented hamper material. Plastic, though, has a drawback: it is prone to damage by cracking, if not carefully placed.
When it comes to style and design; although plastic hampers are less expensive, easy to clean, and light; they are often dull and not as attractive as wicker or rattan. Wicker, on the other hand, comes in many stylish designs, even though compared to plastic; it is a little more expensive and a chore to clean.
The wooden hamper is still, by far, the most expensive of the hampers. On the plus side, though, it is quite elegant and will fit superbly with the wooden furniture and décor in your home. On the flip side, it won’t be the best shot for cases where the laundry going into it will be damp, e.g. wet towels.
Canvas or cloth material is affordable, breathable and the easiest to clean, after plastic—simply throw it into the washing machine together with the laundry any day it begins to annoy you. Although cloth hampers come in more designs than canvas, canvas is a teeny bit more expensive.
Do not forget that the size and weight of a hamper is a major deal. First, look at your space (where you want to put the hamper), that should give you a few ideas on the right size to pick. Also, you want to buy a lightweight hamper. You can’t afford to buy a hamper that is already back-breaking enough without the laundry in it, especially if you’re going to be moving it about. If you must buy the heavier one, then check for something with wheels for easier mobility.
In descending order, wood weighs heaviest, then wicker, canvas, and then cloth and plastic.
Performance and Ease of Use
In a situation where you need to separate different categories of clothes (especially those ones that tend to give out color), you should buy a sectioned hamper. It’s only marginally more expensive and totally worth the extra bucks if it saves your $200 dress from permanent damage.
Moving your hamper around shouldn’t pose a problem as some hampers come with wheels that you can lazily push around. Others come slightly curved (so you can place them conveniently on your hip), and most are lightweight (especially plastic, cloth and canvas). Refrain from buying a heavy hamper that does not come with wheels; you won’t be able to use it anyway if you sprain your back or find it difficult lifting heavy objects.
You absolutely must check for the capacity of a hamper and compare it to your laundry load before you purchase. That’s just common sense, isn’t it? For instance, damp clothes go into large vents, tiny clothes in smaller hampers, infant clothes in larger hampers than hampers for school-aged children. Wash once a week? Smaller hamper. Wash once a month? Bigger hamper. Wash once a year? You might want to reconsider your laundry habits, just saying. You see, it’s really just common sense.
Finally, how to maintain your hamper will be dictated to you by the material used to make your hamper. But basically, you want to keep wood away from moisture, plastic away from experimenting 7-year olds (or else it will break to pieces), and cloth away from a blade or scissor-carrying toddler. For any other specifics, simply play by ear, maintaining a laundry hamper should be a breeze not a chore.
You can wash your cloth or canvas hamper in the washing machine. Wicker, wood, and plastic, on the other hand, will have to make do with dusting, or cleaning with soap and water, depending upon the state they are in.
In selecting the right laundry basket for your use, you now know from the buying guide that there are quite a number of considerations you might want to explore: How big is it? What material is it made of (wood, plastic, or linen)? How easy is it to move around? So, keep these questions at the back of your mind while going through the following reviews in order to pick what’s best for you.
Now that you have gone through our reviews of top laundry hampers, we hope you are better informed and emboldened to make your purchase. Happy shopping!