10 tips on how to take care of your clothes (and keep them for longer)
Clothes are meant to be worn- they’re meant to be enjoyed, accessorised with exuberance and worn without fear of getting ruined. Nevertheless, there are things you can do to make sure your clothes endure the test of time. Here are our top 10 secrets for sustainably caring for your clothes so that you can wear them for longer.
- Get to know your fabrics. Understanding what you are wearing means your better equipped to wash your fabrics properly. Check your garments care label- they will tell you what they’re made of and will also point out how to best wash them
- Wash your clothes less. While it’s been taught to us that we have to wash our clothes after every wear, it’s not necessary. In fact, excessive washing will wear out your clothes quicker and create more damage. Opt for airing them out first by placing them inside out on a hanger.
- Wash with low heat or, preferably, in cold water. High temperatures tend to shrink, fade and wrinkle some fabrics. Lower temperature washes are actually better for delicate fabrics (silk and lace) and even dark, colourful garments. Also, colder washes are more energy saving. If your laundry needs to be done in a warm wash, aim for a 30-60oC wash.
- Wash your clothes inside out! This helps preserve colour and shape. Also, it doesn’t hurt if you chuck it in an intimates bag.
- Try eco-labelled washing laundry detergents- they’re free of harsh chemicals, like chlorine, bleach and phosphates, AKA nasty things that damages your clothes and not great for the environment
- Need a stain removed? Try baking soda! Works a treat (also, sprinkle a bit in your whites wash to make the whites extra white)
- Air dry your laundry when possible. Tumble dryers aren’t efficient and over time, thy can distort the shape of your garments (eek!). When you do air dry your clothes, hang inside out and out of direct sunlight. Hang up structured pieces, like shirts or pants. For delicates and knits, lie flat
- Avoid excessive ironing. Some fabrics are more sensitive to heat then others, so they might get damaged easily. Cotton and Linen on the other hand can withstand high amounts of heat. Just make sure your iron is damp.
- Store your clothes in cool, dark and dry places
- Avoid deodorants and sunscreens with aluminium and it will stain your clothes a little yellow. Go with items that are made of natural ingredients.