Washing and Looking After Your Clothes

By Angela Marshall, 29th Jan 2015

shutterstock_88080115Looking after your clothes and knowing how to wash them correctly is an important basic life skill. Before you load up the washing machine, you have to do some preparation work.

 What to consider:-

  1. Separate items by colour and texture – light from dark and wash white separately. Heavy and light delicate texture. Towels and jeans do not go with delicate fabrics and keep wool and cashmere for a separate wash or hand wash.
  2. Always check the care label.
  3. Choose the correct setting cycle on your washing machine.
  4. Choose the appropriate washing powder  – colour, for whites, biological or non biological.
  5. Wool and Cashmere – ensure you use appropriate liquid and machine cycle or wash by hand.
  6. Do you need fabric softener – avoid for cashmere.
  7. Do not over load – 2/3rds full maximum.

Fabric Piling

Fabric piling is the formation of small, fuzzy balls on the surface of a fabric.  It can make a garment look old and worn. Certain types of fibres e.g. angora and cashmere are more prone to fabric piling, but fabric piling can be prevented, to some extent, by the correct washing and care of clothes.  Wash your garments inside out and on a shorter gentle wash cycle (unless heavily stained) and ensure you remove them from the dryer, if it is appropriate to use, as soon as the cycle is complete.  To remove fabric piles it is best to use a knitwear comb, otherwise stretch the fabric over a curved surface  such as an ironing board and carefully pull off the piles .

Suggestions on How to Look after Various Fabrics

There are so many fabrics and mix of fabrics available, but here are some suggestions:

Cotton – this is relatively low maintenance and can be washed in warm water and tumble dried but 100% does need ironing to look smart and for a crisp look use starch spray.

Silk – depending on the type of silk it is best for the item to be dry cleaned. If the items are machine washable or you wish to risk it (e.g. after having had the item for some time), then I recommend washing it by hand and avoid wringing the garment, drip dry and use a very cold iron if needed.

Polyester – this is generally machine washable at a low temperature and use low heat in your dryer or hang out to dry. Avoid having the item in the dryer for too long. Generally the good thing is it doesn’t need ironing.

Cashmere – check out my blog – for information and tips on how to look after cashmere.

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Welcome to Angela Marshall's Blog. Angela Marshall
"I am in the third phase of my life and having been a successful image consultant for 18 years, I now enjoy the freedom of blogging about life in general, especially fashion, grooming, etiquette and manners." Angela Marshall
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