It constantly surprises me how a simple rethink of an everyday product could have an effect on the environment. There are newly redesigned clothes hangers on the scene that hold specialized charcoal to air out clothes that may only need a freshen-up rather than a full wash. Even if in small amounts, this saves on water, power and soap.
The "Bye Bye Laundry" is a loop-shaped hanger with a filtered glass chamber at the top. Inside are special charcoal pellets processed with oxygen. This acts as an extremely powerful and effective odor eliminator for the clothes on the hanger.
The truth is this hanger is never going to remove stains from clothing or give them an overall deep clean that clothes might need after several times being worn. The hanger is designed for clothes that might have absorbed smells — cigarette smoke being an obvious example. It could also perhaps air out work-related attire, like a blazer or jacket.
The "Bye Bye Laundry" hangers are by British designer Lisa Marie Bengtsson, who saw a need for an alternative to simply washing everything out of habit or lack of any other way to freshen items up. She described her thought process to Treehugger's Kimberley Mok:
"There is a moment between clean and unclean clothes that has got very little attention. Sometimes we throw half-dirty clothes in the laundry basket too often because we don't know where else to put them."
There is something about that reasoning that makes sense; sometimes it's just habit that has us throwing clothes into washing machines. Of course, these hangers will never eliminate washing altogether, and shouldn't in order to keep well worn items sanitary and clean, but if by holding back on a few items each week helps save even a little bit of water and power, that could add up, and every little bit helps.