How to Stop Losing Socks in the Dryer

It can’t just be my house, can it? I know it can’t. My house isn’t the only place where my dryer eats socks. Or should I say, “used to.”

Because I’ve learned how to stop losing socks in the dryer.

I swear, for years there was a monster in my dryer. I’d put my laundry in, and along the way I’d end up with only one sock in a matching pair. I was pretty convinced a dryer monster must be eating my socks.

Whatever was happening, I was sick of it. It was annoying trying to get my kids to put on matching socks only to not be able to find any.

And I don’t know about you, but have you seen the price of socks lately? How have those little pieces of fabric gotten so expensive? And when you have three kids it quickly adds up to constantly buy socks.

There had to be a better way than what we were doing.

Well, I can happily report that I discovered there are ways to minimize the stress of not being able to find matching socks for your child. I’ve figured out how to not lose socks in the washing machine or dryer.  And I’ve even figured out what to do with those mismatched lost socks that we had.

So, today you are going to learn the secrets of always having matching socks for your kids, or yourself. It’s life changing, I tell ya!  And then I’m going to give you some ideas of what to do with those extra old socks you have to repurpose them.


Assign a solid color of socks to each child

Okay, so full disclaimer – this tip won’t prevent actual socks from going missing, but this will fix the sock matching issue.

Buy each child only one color of the same socks. So one child can have all black socks, one child can have all dark grey, another child could have light grey or white.

When you lose one sock it doesn’t matter because ALL their socks match.

I know, I know. It’s a little sad and painful to get rid of the socks with fun designs. But I’m telling you, it’ll greatly reduce your stress in the sock department!

Pin socks together

Not really on board with the one color sock trick? That’s okay, there’s other ways.

Pin a pair of socks together with a safety pin, or these handy sock pins specifically made for this purpose before you put them in the wash.

Ideally, when the socks come off the feet is when you would pin the socks before they go into the laundry basket. This will prevent the socks from separating. The only way you can lose them is if you lose them both!

Use a mesh laundry bag

Another way to prevent yourself from losing socks is to use a mesh laundry bag. Instead of putting your socks into the same laundry basket as the rest of your dirty clothes, have a laundry bag hanging close by and put your socks in it.

Your socks will stay together and no longer become food for the sock monster in the washer or dryer.


You aren’t crazy. Your machine may actually be eating your socks. Many people have taken apart their washer or dryer to discover socks and other small clothing pieces jammed in behind places like the drum.

The socks sometimes get sucked in through holes or spaces in the machine. So you very well may have legitimately lost some socks to your hungry washer or dryer.

Only one sock came out of the dryer

So what do you do if only one sock comes out of the dryer and you don’t know where the match is?

Put a corkboard on the wall near your washing machine. When you only have one sock without its match, pin it to the corkboard.

When the match finally comes through, (provided the dryer didn’t actually eat the other one) you will know exactly where to find the other sock.

What to do with old, unmatched, lonely socks

But what do you do if you just can’t, for the life of you, find that other sock? Well, there’s plenty of ways you can repurpose a lonely, unmatched sock.

Make a hair donut

What’s a hair donut?  No, it’s not something you eat.  It’s a way to put your hair up into a pretty bun.  You can buy them, but you can also make them quite easily out of a sock.  My daughter has a few she’s made.  Here’s a tutorial on how to make one.

Protect your golf clubs 

Put a sock over your golf clubs to protect them from scratches.

Make a sock puppet

Do you have kids?  What about using an old sock for a craft?  Help your child make a sock puppet and then watch as they put on a puppet show!

Use them as old rags

Need some old rags for cleaning, or for working on your vehicle, or in the garage?  Old socks are great for this.

Make a draft door stopper

Is your house drafty?  Make a draft door stopper from socks and save money on your heating bill!  These come in handy especially in the winter time.

Make a heating pad

We love to use these in our house!  Fill a sock with a bunch of rice, tie the end in a knot, toss it in the microwave for a minute or two and you have a heating pad to use for those aches and pains, or just on a very good night.

Dryer balls 

Make a dryer ball to fluff up the rest of your clothes from a sock with these instructions on how to do it.  You can even add essential oils to the dryer ball to add a scent.

No Longer do you need to be Frustrated with Sock Laundry

So, as you can see there are plenty of reasons not to be upset when it comes to washing your socks.  First, there are a few ways to avoid losing your socks, but also, if you do lose one, there are also ways to repurpose the other one.

I know for ages people have talked about how there is a sock monster who eats your socks, and that it may be in ca-hoots with the Tupperware monster – you know, the the creature that eats all your plastic container lids. 

Well, it looks like we have found a way to beat the sock monster at his own game.  Now, if only we can figure out how to conquer the plastic lid monster (hmm, maybe a future post about that one.)

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