Dear Heloise: Last November, I bought luxurious Turkish cotton towels. I asked at the store if these towels would absorb water, and they assured me they would.
Here it is May, and they do not absorb water, and my old towels are much better than these. I've washed them over and over again in warm water. Can you suggest something to help me? Thanks. — Harriet in Houston
Harriet, I'm here to help. Wash the towels in the hottest water safe for fabric, along with 1 cup of household ammonia and NO detergent. It may take a couple of washings with the ammonia, but the absorbency should return.
Here are some other hints to care for towels:
▪ Use less detergent. Washers today clean more by agitation than by chemical means.
▪ Skip fabric softener. Fabric softeners coat the individual fibers and make them nonabsorbent!
▪ Don't throw wet towels in the hamper — bacteria can build up. Lay the towel over a towel rack to dry.
▪ Always read the care labels on your towels for washing and for drying. Your warm-water wash is a good idea, and a gentle detergent is best.
Stripes, no gripes
Dear Heloise: My friend is on the curvy side and always thought she would look bad in striped clothes. I challenged her to step out of her comfort zone and try a striped tunic.
She hesitated at first, but when she actually wore the stripes, she was pleasantly surprised! Stripes are always fresh and fun for spring, and she even saw herself in pictures and thought she looked great!
The hint is to try something new — you may be thrilled! — Julie M., Helotes, Texas
Dot key fobs
Dear Heloise: We have three vehicles, each with its own key fob. On those hurry-up mornings, we were sometimes grabbing the wrong fob.
I got nail polish matching each color of vehicle and daubed a small amount on the coordinating key fob.
This makes it easier to match the keyless-entry remote with the correct car! — Jennifer G., Orlando, Fla.
Dear Heloise: I get a lot of perfume samples in vials with orders I place online. I mix a few drops with a capful of baby oil and mix that into the bath. Warm, relaxing and fragrant. "Scent"-sational! — Mary T. in New York
Dear Heloise: To make ironing less of a chore, I iron the items I least like to iron first. Then the rest seems like a breeze! — A Reader in New Hampshire
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com. I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.