Why You Should Use Wool Dryer Balls Instead

Last Updated on March 30, 2023

If you aren’t using wool dryer balls when doing laundry, you’re missing out!

Composed of 100% natural wool yarn, these balls offer an easy, affordable, and power-saving alternative to dryer sheets. 

As these balls bounce around inside your dryer, they keep layers of fabric separated. This enables clothes and linens to dry more rapidly and thoroughly, often 30 to 40 percent faster than usual.

The woolen balls also absorb moisture as they bounce around the dryer, helping different materials dry evenly. They also absorb the static, so your laundry doesn’t cling together.

You will definitely appreciate the soft, fluffy feel of your freshly-dried laundry!


a set of wool dryer balls for laundry


Benefits of Drying Laundry with Wool Dryer Balls

Woolen dryer balls are durable and last as many as 1,000 loads of laundry.

You can easily determine when to replace them since at that point they will appear somewhat worn and shabby. Small pieces of fiber may begin to shed from the wool.

These helpful laundry drying balls are…


Wool Dryer Balls Are Cost-Efficient

One of the most valuable benefits of using woolen dryer balls when drying your laundry is their cost-effectiveness.

Since you can use each ball up to 1,000 times, it is unnecessary to replace them frequently. In contrast, your supply of fabric softener liquids or sheets depletes rapidly with regular weekly laundry loads.


wool dryer balls in a laundry basket


Wool Dryer Balls Are Eco-Friendly

By using woolen dryer balls when doing your laundry, you can reduce your carbon footprint. Your household expense budget and the planet will both benefit.

These balls composed of natural fibers are completely biodegradable and environmentally safe.

In comparison, fabric softener sheets and most plastic containers for liquid fabric softeners are serious contributors to harmful ocean waste.

Your plants can also benefit from the water-retention properties of wool. Include the worn-out balls when composting in your home garden!


Wool Dryer Balls Are Health-Protective

The sustainable properties of these dryer balls made of wool make them a healthy alternative to fabric softener dryer sheets.

These sheets typically have a surface coating of potentially harmful chemical substances. Such chemicals, including benzyl acetate, have been shown to cause respiratory irritations.

The chloroform in some dryer sheets, is a neurotoxin that is also a harmful carcinogen. Also, some synthetic fragrances contained in these sheets are not healthy for the skin.

When using woolen dryer balls, you can add a drop of your favorite essential oils for a pure, safe scent.


a box of dryer sheets by the drying machine



Disadvantages of Using Wool Dryer Balls

Some inconveniences or disadvantages to using woolen dryer balls when doing your laundry include the following:


• Woolen dryer balls are not as effective in full-capacity loads.

• If your laundry room is near a bedroom, office, or study area, the use of woolen dryer balls can be distracting. Be prepared for the noise that they make while bouncing around inside your dryer.

• As your dryer balls begin to show wear, they often shed small chunks of wool inside your dryer.

These wool remnants sometimes lodge in the dryer’s lint drawer. And then you have to manually remove them. Otherwise, your dried laundry may have excess lint accumulations on fabric surfaces.


an image showing a dryer ball being torn apart


• If you like adding your favorite essential oil to your woolen dryer balls, be sure to add just one drop.

Otherwise, an excess of oil can cause a fire inside the dryer. To be safe, you should add only one drop of oil after your laundry is dry and has cooled somewhat.

Then you can safely add the oil and run the dryer on a cooler cycle for 5 to 10 minutes to give the fabrics an attractive scent.



Advantages of Regular Types of Fabric Softener

Some people will still prefer using regular fabric softener liquids or dryer sheets when washing and drying laundry. These products soften fabrics and prevent the annoying static cling on dried laundry.

They are easy to use, and many brands offer both scented and fragrance-free products. Additional advantages of using these items include the following:

  • Effective for laundry loads of all sizes.
  • Scented fabric softener sheets can also be used to keep stored clothing and linens smelling fresh.
  • Dryer sheets can also be used for scrubbing pots and pans, and other household cleanings.


using dryer sheets to soften fabrics in the drying machine


Disadvantages of Regular Fabric Softener

Disadvantages and annoyances of using fabric softener liquids in your wash or dryer sheets when drying laundry include the following:

  • They contain harsh and toxic chemicals. Some may cause skin or respiratory irritations.
  • Fabric softeners in liquid or sheet form can be harmful pollutants.
  • They form a residue on the inner walls of your dryer. This residue accumulation can be a fire hazard.
  • The residue can cause stains on some fabrics. It can also reduce the absorbency of most towels.


Fabric Softener vs Dryer Balls for Laundry

Our comparison of conventional fabric softeners and dryer balls boils down to these insights:


Overall laundry time

Woolen dryer balls reduce drying time, making laundry chores faster while saving energy and money. Dryer sheets are just as easy to use, but you’ll still need to run the dryer longer.


an image showing the size of a wool dryer ball


Cost-efficiency vs convenience

Dryer balls can be used up to 1,000 times each, making them a cost-effective choice. Yet they are not sold as widely as fabric softeners.

Fabric softener and drying sheets can become depleted quickly when you run frequent loads of laundry.

But, they are also available in every market and are easy to store in your laundry room.


Natural vs Unnatural

Wool dryer balls are made of pure, natural wool and are free of chemicals, toxins, and irritants.

Fabric softer liquids and sheets can leave a chemical coating on your clothing and linens. This can cause eczema or other skin irritations and some respiratory problems.


a wool dryer ball cut in half, showing what it is made of


Woolen dryer balls are not scented, but you can add a drop of fragrant natural oils to gently scent laundry if you like.

Fabric softeners are often sold in scented and fragrance-free choices. However, your local stores may not stock both consistently.



Dryer balls can fluff up your towels and down blankets or jackets in the dryer while eliminating static cling.

Fabric softeners can eliminate static cling from fabrics, but they do not fluff up clothing or linens.

You can always throw a few tennis balls for the same effect, but tennis balls don’t eliminate the negative aspects of using fabric softeners or dryer sheets.



Woolen dryer balls are green products and completely eco-friendly.

Most fabric softener liquids and strips are not environmentally friendly and can add to landfill pollution.

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