No matter where you are, laundry is a necessity. Here at eChinacities, we want to help take care of this necessary evil with as little trouble as possible. So, let us break down the options available to us here in Beijing. From first to worst, here they are:
1) Professional Service
No, we’re not saying let your ayi take care of it. If you want your clothes really looking and smelling their best, hire a professional service. When you want to spend your weekend not doing errands/housework, you’ll be glad to have a service that picks up, delivers, irons, etc. Laundry Town, Fornet or your local laundry shop can do this.
Pros: Easy, quick, high quality
Cons: More expensive
If she is a good ayi, she’ll know how to do laundry properly, but she is still limited by the washing, drying and ironing equipment that you provide, as well as the detergents, softeners and other laundry products you have her buy. You may want to invest in a washer with temperature controls since washing with freezing cold water during the winter isn’t ideal for your clothes. If you hang dry your clothes, you’ll have to wait 1-3 days, depending on the time of the year, before you can have her iron out all the wrinkles. There are a ton of ayi agencies in Beijing, but it’s best to skip the middle man and find one directly on sites like 58.com or ganji.com.
Cons: have to pay ayi, can be slow
So you don’t have an ayi and you don’t want to shell out for a professional service? No problem, just do it yourself. Try to avoid the common top loading domestic washing machines and domestic dryers. These machines can quickly deteriorate the quality of your clothes and leave you needing to replace them sooner. If hang drying your clothes, make sure to take the time to iron them. Ironing is a hassle, but when you hang dry your clothes, it leaves deep wrinkles and weighs down the clothes. If you’re going to do it yourself, do it right. Fabric softener is a must, try not to let water sit in your clothes for more than a day (use a fan or heater) and iron. Gome and Suning are two of the better stores to shop for household appliances.
Cons: Time consuming, ironing can be arduous
4) DIY-Hand Wash
While not to practical for the busy professional you may be surprised by the number of people who still wash their clothes by hand. If you don’t mind doing the work, hand washing may be an option for you. This comes in handy if you have really delicate clothes or don’t want to spend money on any kind of professional laundry service, washing machine or drying machine. Same rules as above apply.
Cons: Most labor intensive, slowest
If you think we missed anything, please leave a comment below.
Laundry Town was started by an American in Beijing who was a little less than satisfied with the state of laundry affairs in the city. Laundry Town does pickups, drop-offs, and everything in between. For more information, visit www.laundrytown.com.
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