Homemade Wool Dryer Balls

Gold Post Medal for All Time! 555 Posts
September 1, 2015

balls and essential oilsHomemade wool dryer balls help dry laundry much faster, replace dryer sheets to soften and scent and help fluff clothes.

Using them saves money since the dryer is one of the biggest users of electricity and they shorten the time. Plus they are fun to make and even give as gifts. See how easy they are to make!



  • wool yarn (Fisherman's Wool is great since you want it to shrink!)
  • old knee high nylon stocking
  • optional- essential oils of your choice
  • optional wrapping- an old orange net bag if you want to 'gift them' to someone


I found a skein of wool yarn by keeping my eyes open at yard sales. One skein makes about 5 balls.

  1. Start by wrapping the yarn around your hand about 20 times.
  2. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
  3. Then continue wrapping the yarn around the center about 20 more times.
  4. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
  5. Fold in half and continue wrapping it into a ball shape. The ball will shrink to about 3/4 the size it is when done wrapping, so keep that in mind. I made two different sizes...just experimenting!
  6. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
    Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
    Homemade Wool Dryer Balls

  7. Finish by sticking the end of the yarn as deeply into the center of the ball as possible.
  8. Slip the balls into an old knee high nylon and tie them in between each one so they don't fall out of the stocking. This will help them hold together and help form them when they shrink down.
  9. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
  10. Drop them into a hot wash of laundry. Or if you don't use hot water for your laundry, like me, I just dropped them into boiling water on my stove. This starts the shrinking process.
  11. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
  12. They should go into a warm/hot dryer after they cool down.
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  14. I let mine cool, stepped on them gently to squeeze the excess water out of them and added my dryer balls to a load of clothes I was going to dry.
  15. I'd say to do this wet and dry for two washes to maximize the balls' shrinkage.
  16. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
  17. Now your dryer balls are ready to be thrown in the dryer each time!
  18. I added a few drops of essential oils. I love lavender and peppermint. There are tons of great scents! You could even designate certain balls for certain scents/people!
    Even Kmart and Walmart now sell the oils (in their health and beauty section).
  19. I am going to make some for my family members and add a bottle of essential oil to it (as shown) as little gifts! Just drop them into one of those netted bags that come with some produce or make a little cloth bag and slip them in with a ribbon!
  20. Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
    Homemade Wool Dryer Balls

I've seen these dryer balls is specialty stores for quite a bit of money and they didn't include the essential oil idea!

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

July 27, 2017

Everyone is talking about using tennis balls or purchased rubber dryer balls to use in the dryer, but has anyone purchased wool dryer balls or made wool dryer balls? If so how do these compare to tennis balls or rubber dryer balls?

I am also concerned about the chemicals in both the tennis balls and rubber balls so I made wool dryer balls to use in my dryer.

Using Dryer Balls - wool dryer balls


Diamond Post Medal for All Time! 1,246 Posts
July 27, 20170 found this helpful

I think the wool ones are better overall. They cut drying time and don't have chemicals in them like tennis balls do.

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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
July 28, 20170 found this helpful

They are supposed to be good. I Heard the white ones leave lint on dark clothes, so the black is better

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
July 28, 20170 found this helpful

I have used tennis balls and some type of hard ball and I did not notice any chemical smell but I do not ever use hot heat in my dryer, in fact I dry a lot of clothes outside and finish on no heat in my dryer. I would be afraid to use hot heat with tennis balls.


My daughter uses homemade wool dryer balls and loves them but she only uses dark wool so I think you will be happy with your wool balls and no chemical problem.

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 228 Posts
September 15, 2008

Make your own dryer balls! I ran across this cool how-to for all my DIY chums. This is so easy!

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