Laundry is a part of life, and therefore the process includes collecting the dirty clothes before washing, and then re-collecting them after they have been washed. Laundry hampers serve as an excellent way to organize the collection of dirty clothes, to transport clothes to the washing machine, and perhaps to carry them back to be put away.

Where to Place Laundry Hampers

Typically, hampers are found in bathrooms, or in a central hallway near bedrooms to deposit dirty clothes. Some homes have laundry shoots and a hamper to receive the dirty clothes near the washing machine. Using multiple hampers, strategically placed throughout one's home, is a great way for large families with lots of kids to make laundry preparation easier. Using an extra hamper for dry cleaning is also helpful. Folding clothes and putting them directly into the hamper(s) also helps organize the process of maintaining a household with clean clothes that are readily available to all family members.

Types of Laundry Hampers

Laundry hampers come in many styles, ranging from a simple plastic basket to designer wooden hampers. Some come with a lid that opens at the top and some with a pullout drawer or drawers for ease in sorting clothes. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes, colors, textures, and finishes. There are baskets defined as hip huggers, which are designed for ease of carrying heavy loads (by placing the weight on one's hip instead of the arms). Some of the styles include a cotton lining for the hamper that is held in place by Velcro for easy removal. In this case, the hamper doubles as a laundry bag. There are hampers that are simply metal or wooden frames with or without wheels to which laundry bags are attached, and some of them fold up for ease of storage. And then there are canvas bags, drawstring net bag, and duffle bags--all of which serve as portable hampers. Prices range from extremely cheap for a net bag, plastic, or rubber basket to somewhat more for a designer hamper.

Advantages Certain Types of Laundry Hampers Have Over Others

The advantage of plastic or rubber hampers is that they can handle wet clothes without having to be washed often. They can simply be wiped after use and cleaned periodically. Cloth bags need to be machine washed periodically due to the possibility of mildew. Wood and wicker hampers also need to be dried and wiped down periodically to prevent the formation of mildew. Many hampers come with air holes to deal with the issue of damp clothes.

Where to Find Laundry Hampers

The Internet offers a wide variety of outlets for looking at photos of the different styles of hampers, and comparing prices, as well as reading what customers have to say about the products and services. Of course, retail stores also offer a wide selection of laundry bags, baskets, and hampers as well.