These Wool Dryer Balls Have Nearly 35,000 Five-Star Reviews (and They’re Under $20!)

These wool drying balls saved my sensitive skin! Plus they're chemical-free and cut drying time in half... what's not to love?

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It all comes out in the wash

Laundry is one of those chores that never goes away. There’s always something that needs washing, something that needs folding, and a new stain remover, best-smelling laundry detergent, or fabric softener to buy. As an eco-conscious type, I’m always trying to reduce my burden on the planet by using less plastic and products made with fewer chemicals. This means I spend a lot of time seeking out products made with clean ingredients, or recycled materials. There’s nothing I love more than finding an environmentally friendly product: Bonus points if it saves me money! Extra bonus points if it’s not just better for me or the Earth, but is actually a more effective product than the alternative. The final hurdle? My super sensitive skin that reacts to many of the standard ingredients in laundry detergent, softeners, and dryer sheets. To do my laundry, I need something eco-friendly and gentle. Enter my new best household chore friend: Smart Sheep wool dryer balls. They tick every single box!

What are wool dryer balls?

The wool dryer balls work in two ways. The Smart Sheep dryer balls are made from premium New Zealand wool that absorbs some of the moisture of wet fabric. The movement of the dryer balls also helps to cut down on drying time, as the wool bounces between the wet clothes, separating them and allowing warm air to flow between the layers. The wool fluffs towels and comforters, and because there are no chemicals, the company promises no skin irritation. Even better: Of the many glowing reviews, several buyers noted that the wool dryer balls picked up lint and pet hair from their clothes, meaning their clothes were cleaner than before.

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But would they work for me?

When I came across these wool dryer balls on Amazon, I was wearing a shirt that was making me itch. I knew it was because of the dryer sheets I had recently started using to try and combat the static cling that had been gluing my clothes together when I took them out of the dryer. The Smart Sheep wool dryer balls promised to reduce that cling, chemical-free. They also promised to last for over 1,000 loads of laundry (more than two years’ worth!) and save me money by shortening the drying time. I read the reviews: enthusiastic. I checked out the price: $16.95 for six grapefruit-sized dryer balls. What’s not to love? I hit Buy Now.

That was six months ago, and ever since that first purchase I have enjoyed calm, non-irritated skin and clean, cling-free clothes that dry in half the time (as long as I don’t overload the dryer). Additionally, the wool dryer balls haven’t degraded at all; they look and work exactly the same as they did when I first bought them. They do make a bit of noise bouncing around in the dryer, but nothing too intrusive, and they’re no more difficult to untangle from a sheet than a traditional dryer sheet. In fact, they’re easier to find because I can just feel for the shape. Recently, I’ve experimented with adding a few drops of lavender essential oil to the dryer balls, which lasts for several washes and makes my clothes and linens smell delicious. I’m looking forward to buying them again in about two and a half years!

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There are zero reasons not to buy these wool dryer balls

Even if you don’t have sensitive skin like me, using a sustainable and chemical-free laundry solution like wool dryer balls is incredibly important for your long-term health. Fabric softeners and dryer sheets may accomplish the same thing, but many of the chemicals in these products are known to be toxic. Some are carcinogens that are known to cause cancer with sustained exposure (like a daily or weekly laundry load). Some of these harmful ingredients include chloroform (a neurotoxin and carcinogen), limonene (a carcinogen), benzyl acetate (linked to pancreatic cancer), benzyl alcohol (which irritates the respiratory tract), ethanol (linked to disorders of the central nervous system) and more.

The chemicals are released into the air and absorbed into your clothes when the sheets heat up in the dryer; they could be inhaled or absorbed through your skin, and pose risks to your respiratory and long-term health. Sounds scary, right?! Fortunately, using a sustainable product like the Smart Sheep wool dryer balls is an easy and affordable way to protect yourself and your family (and prevent that static cling) without sacrificing your clothes or bank balance.

Did we mention they’re under $20?!

These amazing wool dryer balls are available from Amazon for just $16.95, a true bargain when you weigh it against the fact that they last for two to four years! They come with six dryer balls, and the company recommends you use three or four for smaller loads, and five or six for those giant weekend laundry loads. Smart Sheep also notes that although they source their wool from New Zealand and inspect and package them in the United States, the balls themselves are felted in Nepal by women and minority groups paid a strong living wage. Sustainable product and responsible business practice? I might just be a customer for life, and I’m buying them as housewarming gifts for all my friends too.

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Wool Dryer Ballsvia

Best Smart Sheep wool dryer balls Amazon reviews:

I’m not the only dryer ball convert! Many other laundry-doing people found similar benefits, and several of them raved about the product on Amazon.

Danielle: “I did a load of towels comparison to test these. I have a high-capacity washer and when I fill it full of towels I have to run it through the dryer for 180 mins. When I checked them with the balls they were dryer at 40 minutes than they used to be at 90, so I put them in for another 40 minutes. For towels at least… it literally cut my drying time in a little less than HALF.”

C. Knighton: “An added and unexpected bonus is that these wool balls attract dog hair away from my clothing! On any given day, I have a minimum of four Samoyeds (very hairy white dogs) and two white-ish cats who are all dead set on depositing as much fur on my clothing as possible. So I know about hairy clothes! They don’t leave my laundry fur-free but there is a noticeable reduction since I started using them.”

Tamera: “These are amazing! I do about two to three loads of laundry a day. I love these! Back in 12/18, I bought a 6-pack of Smart Sheep Dryer Balls and a 6-pack of dryer balls from another brand. I wasn’t sure what to expect, and I’m amazed. They are all used together for drying my laundry. After eight months of use, I still have all six Smart Sheep Dryer balls (they are holding up, no unraveling like the other brand, smell pleasant, are keeping their shape, etc).”


Chloë Nannestad
Chloë Nannestad is a lifestyle writer covering crafts, holidays, beauty and amazing products for When she's not scouring the internet or reading product reviews, she's planning her next backpacking trip and thinking about getting a dog.