101 things to do with Soak | 037 The walking cast

Author: Ngoc

Our ankles have been having a bad summer here at the Soak office.


A few months ago, just as the weather was warming up, Chris showed up to work with a broken ankle. Since it is illegal to drive with a cast, Jacqueline graciously acted as Chris’s chauffeur, driving her to and from work, and on small errands for a good 2 months.

Chris was just absolutely ecstatic when the 2 months was up, and she could walk around in her walking cast without crutches, and drive herself wherever her heart desired. Jacqueline’s duties as a chauffeur were finally over. But as luck (or bad luck?) would have it, shortly after, Jacqueline limped into our office with a defeated look and tells us that she too has broken her ankle.

Crafty Jacqueline decided to spruce up her cast with racing stripes, and pretty fabric straps.

She had thought that when Chris said, “I owe you one for driving me” that her favor would be repaid in the form of a delicious meal. Never would she have guessed that her favor would be repaid in the form of a chauffeur. How ironic.

Now whenever we have visitors to the office and they hear our ankle stories, they always look at me and jokingly say “looks like your next”, where I then let out a very nervous laugh and quickly look around for some wood to knock on.

If you’ve ever worn one of these walking casts, then you will be familiar with that indescribable odor that builds up after wearing one of these. Imagine walking around all day with your leg wrapped in foam, in the middle of the summer. Needless to say, the cast is often drenched in sweat by the days end. Luckily for Jacqueline and Chris, (and for me too!), we work in an office where Soak is readily available.

How to: wash your walking cast.

The foam in the walking cast is hand-washable, and you can wipe down the hard exterior shell with a gentle detergent. It is best to do it in the evening before you go to bed so the cast has time to dry overnight.

  1. Remove the foam piece from the exterior.
  2. Fill a basin/sink with water and some Soak.
  3. Leave the foam in to Soak for about 15 mins. Give it a dunk every once in a while if it is floating.
  4. Gently squeeze out the excess water, then press between a towel to absorb the rest of the excess water.
  5. Hang to dry or lay flat on a drying rack.
  6. Take a soft cloth, dip it in some water and Soak and gently wipe the hard shell of the cast.

 

If you find yourself in the situation where you have to wear one of these, I wish you luck and hope that you recover quickly!


101 things to do with Soak | 036 Hand wraps and bag gloves

This week’s story is submitted by my friend Benson. He gets his weekly workout by sparring and working his punching bag.  


He uses hand wraps and training gloves that he has admitted to not having washed since he bought them over a year ago. They’re at the point where he’s about ready to retire them so he figured he might as well try washing them with Soak. The gloves were still in really good condition but your hand sweats in them during a work out, and after a year of sweating, they have developed quite a distinct odor.

Make sure you read the washing instructions to see if it is ok to wet your gloves before attempting to wash your gloves.

Fill your sink with warm water and add some Soak. Put in your hand wraps and gloves. The gloves will likely float so give them a dunk and swish them around every now and then.

Leave to soak for about 15 mins. Squeeze gently to remove most of the excess water. Benson chose to hang his to dry but you can also lay them flat on a hanging rack.

There was still a faint lingering scent left in the gloves, though it was a significant improvement. Keeping your gloves clean will help prevent the build up of bacteria and germs that can develop in warm moist material.

Thanks for the story and the photos Benson!

Do you have a unique use for Soak? Send me your fun stories along with some photos and we’ll feature it on our blog!


101 things to do with Soak | 035 Sand Socks

Author: Ngoc

One of my favourite locations in Toronto (and there are many!) is Ashbridges bay. The park is constantly filled with people jogging, biking, having bbqs, relaxing on the sand and playing beach volleyball.


Volleyball is the only sport that I am not completely terrible in. I’ve played court vball for years and I thought I’d try my hand at beach volleyball this year. I joined a random team for a tournament and quickly learned that although the concept was the same, my ability to move quickly and smoothly on sand needed a lot of work. I played for a team that was supporting Senhoa, a non-profit organization.

Senhoa supports victims of human trafficking by providing income-generating opportunities, social reintegration and programs for self-empowerment.  

Many of the friends I met wore sand socks when they played. I never understood why they were necessary until I found myself playing at noon, in the middle of the summer. The sand became so hot that it would leave you with little blisters on the bottom of your feet.

You can imagine after a day of running, jumping and just sweating due to the heat, that these socks would need a good cleaning after every use. Sand socks are made of a neoprene and lycra material (similar to the materials in a wetsuit) and cannot be thrown into the washing machine. I was a little grossed out when my friends told me that they couldn’t be bothered to hand wash their socks every time and that one of them actually hadn’t wshed their socks all summer. I took his word for it when he told me that they smelled really bad. Instead I gave him some mini-soaks and begged him to give Soak a try.

 The following photos were sent to me from my ecstatic male friend who washed his sand socks with great success, and is now searching around his house for other fun things that  he can soak.

Dirty sand socks.

Add one mini-soak packet.

Leave to soak for 15 mins.

Good as new and ready for the next game.


101 things to do with Soak | 034 Wool is wool.

Author: Jacqueline

We often get questions related to the effects of using Soak on less common textiles. These requests usually come in the form of ‘well, I’ll try, I’ve got nothing to lose and if it doesn’t work, it was ruined/ old/ garbage anyhow…’. Sometimes it’s ‘can I soak the veil from my grandmother’s wedding gown? It’s old and yellow, and if it doesn’t’ work, it’s garbage anyhow’. Fortunately, these letters are often followed by raving success stories of lovely weddings including gramma’s veil, or otherwise destitute fabrics getting a second life.


Dirty rug before SoakThis week, I had my very own ‘I might as well try Soak, or I throw it out anyhow’ moment with our spare room carpet. The artistically inclined teenager moved out and left a myriad of purple spotted stains on my favourite throw rug. I knew I was taking a risk leaving the rug in the room, but I neither had anywhere else to put it, nor wanted to move it from its destined home. Plus, she liked the rug, and it’s just a rug.

Luckily I had taken a bottle of Unleash from the ‘friends and family‘ shelf just the other day. So, I got down on my hands and knees, well, sort of, as I am still with a broken ankle and cast, so it was more of a sideways sit and started to scrub.  I put some Soak on a scotch brite pad, and off I went. To my shock and pleasure, the agitation caused by the scrubbing was just enough to gently open the fibers, squeeze in some Soak and release the ‘purple spots’, whatever they were, from the rug.  I used a damp cloth to blot the spot, gave it a quick rub to restore the threads and was off to the next spot. 
cleaning the rug with Soak
I didn’t rinse it out or work it for very long- just long enough to saturate the fibers in question and loosen the stain right on out. Who knew? Wool is wool after all, and Soak worked just as well on my carpet, as it does on my favourite sweaters. 

Yippee! My carpet looks newer than new.
clean rug after Soak

Send us your Soak ‘who knew it would work’ stories. We’ve got a favourite from a friend’s mom who Soaked her living room curtains new again.  Sadly she forgot to take the before and after photos, so don’t forget those when you send in your submissions! We look forwarding to sharing your stories too.


101 things to do with Soak | 033 Life jackets

Author: Ngoc

I had been searching for a place to volunteer when my friend suggested that I look into the Disabled Sailing Association of Ontario (DSAO). They are a great non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing people living with a disability the opportunity to learn about and enjoy sailing.


 

I had no idea when I walked into the small office at the beginning of the summer, that I would want to spend every single evening down at the Harbourfront volunteering for them. I volunteered as a sailing companion and was able to learn how to sail, spend my summer surrounded by water, and hang out with some of the best company I’ve ever had. I met more inspirational and positive people this summer than I have in my whole life. They showed me that you can overcome any obstacle with the right mind set. One particularly amazing person that I met was Joseph Chessari who had both of his legs severed last year in a work place accident while cleaning a machine. Visit his site www.walkingwithnewlegs.com and learn more about his story and his initiatives to support and encourage other amputees.

Sadly, the sailing season is coming to an end and the time has come to lift the boats out of the water and store all the equipment away until next summer. While putting away the life jackets, I noticed that they had become extremely dirty and had a slight musty smell to them. Of course the first thing that came to my mind was, “These could use a good wash in Soak.”

Washing your life jacket.

There are several types of life jackets out there so take a look at the care tag before washing. Make sure you do this early enough in the day that the life jackets will have enough time to dry completely.

  • We had a lot of life jackets to clean so we laid them out on the grass and hosed them all down.
  • I filled up a Carrie basin with some cool water and some Soak.
  • I used a soft cloth and dipped it in the Soak water and gave each life jacket a gentle rub down.
  • Hang them up to dry.
  • Make sure they are completely dry before storing.

There are many great activities in Toronto dedicated to providing activities for those living with a disability. If you have someone special in your life that has a disability, I would strongly encourage you to tell them about disabled sailing, or perhaps disabled skiing for the winter. If you or anyone you know has questions about disabled sailing, feel free to contact me at ngoc@soakwash.com and I’d be happy to help you in any way I can.

I am also looking for another interesting place to volunteer. Let me know if you know if any great organizations in need of helpers.


101 things to do with Soak | 032 Suitcases

Author: Esther 

I love everything that comes with travelling: exploring new places, trying new foods, experiencing new cultures, and meeting wonderful people. I have been lucky enough to travel to many different cities around the world for both missionary work and for pleasure. My trusty bright green suitcase has been the perfect companion during my trips to Seoul, Puket, Vancouver, Torreon, Monterrey, Tampico, Nava and most recently, New York City.


  

I’ve had this suitcase for years and the once bright vibrant green fabric is now decorated with stains and has dulled in color due to the thin layer or dirt and dust. Having a brightly colored suitcase makes it easily spottable when it circles the luggage conveyor belt. After returning from my latest vacation, I decided that my suitcase needed a good cleaning.

How I cleaned my suitcase:

Please remember to empty everything out of the pockets.

I put the suitcase into my bathtub and poured some Soak directly on the heaviest stains and used a slightly wet brush to gently scrub away the dirt. I gave the bag a quick rinse and was amazed at how dirty the water was. 

Open up all the pockets/compartments and leave it to air dry. 

I left it in the bathtub overnight to dry and when I went to check on it in the morning, it looked brand new. I forgot how bright and vibrant it used to be. My green suitcase is now clean, smells great and is ready for our next great adventure together. 


101 things to do with Soak | 031 Canning tomatoes.

Author: Jacqueline

Sometimes you just have too many tomatos.


While making our third batch of sauce we finally ran out of pots. Mini-Carrie came to the rescue storing chopped tomatos and basil pre-cooking. Yum. The Carries and Phils are non-toxic and food safe, so cook away!


101 things to do with Soak | 030 Phil in the garden

Author: Ngoc

Ted, our friendly office handyman/tech guy made a trip to Leamington, Ontario last week and brought us back some delicious Ontario grown tomatoes. Leamington is known as the tomato capital of Canada, and for good reason.


He said that you couldn’t drive 500 meters without seeing someone selling tomatoes on the side of the road. He pulled over and opened the trunk to look for a bag to hold the tomatoes and instead found a handy-dandy Phil which did the job perfectly! As I was biting into a perfectly ripe tomato, I thought about other ways that Phil and Carrie could help in the garden. Here’s what I came up with.

  • Watering buckets. They both hold a lot of water and their handles and bevelled edges make pouring a cinch.
  • Fill them up with soil or fertilizer. Just give them a rinse in water and leave upside-down to dry once you’re done.
  • Use them to hold your fruits and vegetables while harvesting.
  • Throw your weeds in them when weeding to make for an easier clean up.

Carrie and Phil (along with Jacqueline) will be at the KW knitter’s fair this Friday if you are in the area and would like to invite them to your home!


101 things to do with Soak | 029 University Essentials

Author: Ngoc

Orientation week. Frosh week. Welcome week. 


My little cousin Diana and her friends having a good time during Ryerson's Frosh week.

Summer has finally come to an end but for these students entering college/university for the first time, this week has been highly anticipated. If your son or daughter is heading off to post-secondary school this week, don’t forget to send them off with a bottle of Soak or a handful of mini-soaks.

In honour of all the students going back to school, I’d like to dedicate this week’s post to the lessons I learned during my time at university and how Soak can help.

The freshman 15 is very real. After being the same weight for 5 years, it only took 2 weeks with a prepaid meal plan for me to put an extra 10% on my body weight. Being able to have a full meal at 1 am is both glorious and awful. Whether you are enjoy yoga, swimming, intramural sports or lifting weights; exercising will help you stay healthy, combat the freshman 15, keep your mind alert, and is a great way to meet other students. Use Soak to keep your workout wear clean after every use. You can use it on your swimwear, yoga wear, jerseys, and even your gym shoes. Just soak for 15 mins and lay flat or hang to dry.

Your backpack will be used to carry more than just books. At least once during the school year, your bag will be soiled by either a drink explosion, a squished banana or a thousand chip crumbs. Not to worry, a good soaking in the sink with some Soak will clean that bag right up. Just flip your backpack inside out and shake over a garbage can. Make sure you empty all the pockets. Fill up the sink, add Soak and leave your bag in there for 15 mins. Squeeze out as much of the water as you can and hang to dry.

   

There is always a shortage of quarters. I would let my dirty laundry pile up until I didn’t have a single clean garment left. I’m embarrassed by the amount of times I’ve picked up a shirt from my dirty laundry basket, gave it a sniff and deemed it appropriate to wear. A mini-soak would have been just what I needed during moments. If you know that you will need an outfit for the evening but don’t have time to put in a load of laundry, don’t fret, just use Soak. Throw the outfit you want to wear in the sink with some Soak, leave for 15 mins, squeeze out the excess water and roll in a towel to absorb as much of the water as possible, and hang to dry. In the summer, hanging by an open window will help to speed up the drying process.

Other lessons
  • Even though you had 8am classes every day in high school, waking up for an 8am class in university is significantly harder.
  • 1 hour break between classes means you can take a good 45 min nap.
  • 500 dollars a course divided by 12 weeks of school means you are paying approximately 42 dollars a week per course. Go to them.
  • Text books are really expensive. Check to see if your school has a used book store, or use online classifieds to buy from other students. Often the older edition will suffice. Ask the prof.
  • University isn’t easy. It isn’t as hard as you first think it is either. You will survive.
  • Any food that is free is delicious.
  • You will look forward to visiting your parents, or having your parents visit you. There is always something home cooked involved.
  • Living in residence is fun, exciting, unpredictable, memorable, and also something that I couldn’t handle doing again. Good luck and enjoy.  

Do you have any other fun tips from your University days? I’d love to hear them.


101 things to do with Soak | 028 Silicone adhesives

Author: Ngoc

I adore the look of plunging back lines, and curve hugging silk dresses. I remember watching How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and falling in love (as I’m sure many girls did) with Kate Hudson’s bold yellow dress.


I’ve never been brave enough to try wearing one of these myself until I walked by a clearance rack and saw an amazing royal blue silk dress with an open back in my size for only $20 (down from $198!) because it was last years style, the strap was broken and it had a small stain. Nothing that a sewing machine and some  couldn’t fix. Appropriate undergarments are a must with this style of dress. This is where the backless strapless bra, and the strapless panties come in.

These are photos provided by Shibue of the same dress comparing the traditional panty vs the strapless panty.

The strapless panty is a new discovery I made earlier this year when Jacqueline came back from a tradeshow with a few pairs for us girls at the office. Made by Shibue, these panties are held in place by a strip of silicone gel adhesive across the front and back of the panty. Since they don’t have straps around your waist, you don’t have to worry about the slight indent caused by panty lines.

This is the same with backless bras, they are two cups that are held on to your body with a silicone adhesive. No shoulder straps or back straps to worry about.

These undergarments are reusable and with proper care can last for several uses. Jenny, the creator and designer of Shibue, recommends using  to properly care for your silicone adhesive undergarments.

1. Gently peel it from your body and wash with  to remove body oils and dirt. Once washed, the adhesive will regenerate itself.

2. Leave to air dry and then place back on the protective film that accompanies the panties and bras when you purchase them. This prevents lint, dust and other contaminants from sticking to the adhesive while in storage.


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