Think about your washer and dryer: how many times have you used them to wash your clothes? Likely dozens if not hundreds of times. You want to keep your amazing wardrobe smelling nice and clean! But what if we told you that the traditional routine of sending your clothes through the washer and dryer is actually ruining them?
Shrinking. Fading. Loose stitches. These are all negative side effects of doing laundry. We’ve all experienced the gut wrenching disappointment when taking our favourite garment out of the wash only to notice it has shrunk, the pattern has faded, or is coming apart because some stitches got ripped out. The good news is that these horrors are 100% preventable. Let’s take a look at how you can extend the life of your clothing by washing them the right way.
Use Cold Water
We recommend using the cold water setting on your washing machine, as it will cause the least amount of damage to your clothing. Lower temperatures protect the dyes, and therefore the color of clothes, while also helping to preserve the fit of the clothes by preventing shrinkage, particularly along the seams.
As well, using cold water is environmentally friendly. About 90 percent of the energy consumed while running a load of laundry is used to heat the water so the average household that washes their clothes this way can eliminate as much as 350 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
To get clothes fully clean in cold water, look for detergent that's marked "cold water detergent." Not every detergent cleans clothes well in cold water, but those specially marked "cold water" do the job just right.
Something else to keep in mind is that a lot of regular-formula laundry detergents have chemicals additives like enzymes and bleach that degrade the quality of your garment. Mild detergents such as Woolite or Mountain Green have no chemical additives.
Avoid The Dryer Like The Plague
In one study presented to the American Chemical Society, researchers found that repeatedly drying cotton garments in the dryer led to cracks in the clothing, which reduced fabric strength by 25 percent or more and also caused pilling.
If you’re in a rush and absolutely have to use the dryer, use a delicate setting. Otherwise air drying is the way to go here.
Cold water soaks help dissolve many stains, from grass to tomato juice. If clothes with these stains get washed in warm water, the stains set into the fabric which makes it difficult to remove. A cold water soak, followed by cold water washing, is far likelier to restore stained garments to its original condition.
Fabric Care Guide: Wool
We love wool because it keeps us warm and snuggly on even the most chilliest of fall days. The problem is that when you put it in the washing machine, it loses its original shape and starts looking…well, weird. This is because it causes the fibers to cling very tightly together.
Here’s how we recommend washing wool:
- Fill up a sink with cold water.
- Put the garment in the sink and hand wash it using a mild shampoo or detergent (just like the old days).
- Flat dry it.
Happy washing Filthy Fam! If you have any questions feel free to shoot us a message.